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By recording these classic folk songs our goal is to give life to these musical stories and treasures and to offer them to the world.
By recording these classic folk songs our goal is to give life to these musical stories and treasures and to offer them to the world.
139 backers pledged $17,177 to help bring this project to life.

About

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$17,177

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So, who doesn't love a good story?

St. Charles Singers is a 34-voice professional choir (located in St. Charles, IL) now in our 32nd year of performing, preserving, and promoting great choral music. Jeffrey Hunt is the founder and continues as our musical director.

We believe that overlooked treasures in the world of choral music should be unlocked for everyone to hear and enjoy. We want to preserve these treasures in an audio CD format that will endure for a lifetime. Recording Bushes & Briars will bring together one of the flag-bearers of British folk music (Ralph Vaughn Williams) along with 12 other composers who have crafted a collection which creates in us a nostalgia for an earlier time.

Composers such as Ralph Vaughan Williams, Percy Grainger, Gustav Holst, John Byrt, Sir David Wilcocks, John Rutter, and others have written these messages about love, relationships, nature, and places. Our goal is give life to these musical stories and treasures and offer them to the world.

Oxford Folk Songs for Choirs Books 1&2
Oxford Folk Songs for Choirs Books 1&2

Classic folk music of this kind goes beyond the beautiful sound that is created and takes us deeper into the lives, traditions, customs, and beliefs of a particular people. By presenting and recording this music, our goal is to touch the lives of many, bringing them closer to the thoughts and stories of people from long ago…people who are a lot like us. We hope that you and many new listeners will find this music uplifting and fun to listen to. 

You may find yourself humming these tunes throughout your day.

Sample some selections from other recordings by St. Charles Singers:

"Prelude" Ola Gjeilo

 "When Rooks Fly Homeward" Arthur Baynon

"Missa Brevis in C Major, Credo K259" W.A. Mozart

"Lamento d'Arianna"  Claude Monteverdi

Our title, Bushes & Briars, is a metaphor for the lives described in many folk songs. That is, some days we may nestle in the bushes, taking comfort in our surroundings and our relationships. Other times, life can be difficult. It feels like we’ve stumbled into a prickly briar patch and we just need to get out of it. These songs are conversations about life, sometimes whimsical, and other times quite direct in their message. That is what makes them so charming!

We invite you to become a backer to help us achieve our Kickstarter goal of raising $10,000.  That's what it will take to make this recording a reality (actually the total cost is closer to $25,000).  If we exceed our goal, even more people will benefit.  Extra funds will be used to help complete the recording project earlier than anticipated, to support the ongoing operations of the choir, and to expand SING!, our summer outreach to high school students. SING! is an all-day choral workshop providing students with individual vocal and ensemble singing training from Chicago-area music teachers and professionals.

Thanks for supporting Bushes & Briars!

Here are the songs from Book 1 of Oxford Folk-Songs for Choirs we will record:

  • Among the Leaves So Green, O, arr. John Byrt
  • Bushes and Briars, arr. Donald James
  • Black Sheep, arr. John Rutter
  • Bobby Shaftoe, arr. David Willcocks
  • Dashing Away with the Smoothing Iron, arr. John Rutter
  • Early one Morning, arr. David Willcocks
  • Greensleeves, arr. R. Vaughan Williams
  • Londonderry Air, arr. Percy Grainger
  • My Sweetheart’s Like Venus, arr. Gustav Holst
  • O Waly Waly, arr. John Rutter
  • She’s like the Swallow, arr. Edward Chapman
  • Sourwood Mountain, arr. John Rutter
  • and from Book 2:
  • Afton Water, arr. David Willcocks
  • Briggs Fair, arr. Percy Grainger
  • Ca’the Yowes, arr. R.Vaughan Williams
  • Faithful Johnny, arr. John Byrt
  • I love My Love, arr. Gustav Holst
  • Strawberry Fair, arr. Donald James
  • Swansea Town, arr. Gustav Holst
  • The Keel Row, arr. John Byrt
  • The Oak and the Ash, arr. Edward Bairstow
  • The Three Ravens, arr. Edward Chapman
  • The Sailor and Young Nancy, arr. E.J.Moeran
  • The Turtle Dove, arr. R.Vaughan Williams
  • Yarmouth Fair, arr. Peter Warlock , as adapted by Armstrong Gibbs

stcharlessingers.com

Risks and challenges

We're working with Hudson Fair, a world-reknown producer/recordist, so we're expecting a great product. Challenges St. Charles Singers face include ongoing funding (a common challenge for choirs). Many state and local grant organizations have cut back funding to the arts. So we are reaching out to those who savor the treasure of folk songs through this Kickstarter campaign. Fans of St. Charles Singers come from all walks of life. Some love the way we sing Mozart, some the way we sing chant or early 20th century choral songs. Others are amazed at how we perform newly commissioned works.

Our spectrum is wide and now we hope to draw in new listeners of beautiful songs. Bushes & Briars will stretch us by focusing exclusively, with this project, in the folk song genre. (We LOVE new challenges--For example we are just past the middle of The Mozart Journey, a multi-year project in which we are performing all of the known sacred choral music of W.A Mozart).

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    Get a digital download of BOTH "Greensleeves" and "Londonderry Air" track from Bushes & Briars new CD.

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    Pledge $15 or more About $15

    Travel in style with St. Charles Singers flexible luggage tags (set of 2) with plastic insert for your business card or label PLUS a digital download of "Greensleeves" and "Londonderry Air".

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    Get the digital download recording of the 25 Folks Songs for Choirs from Books 1&2 as recorded on Bushes & Briars by St. Charles Singers. Includes digital copy of the album insert featuring lyrics and photos.

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    Pledge $40 or more About $40

    Enjoy the Bushes & Briars CD PLUS the digital download of the album.

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    Pledge $60 or more About $60

    Enjoy our beautifully designed, side saddle-stitched Libretto featuring all of the lyrics from the 25 Bushes & Briars folk songs PLUS the Bushes & Briars CD, PLUS the digital download of the album.

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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    Look sharp in your black long-sleeved high quality cotton T-shirt sporting the St. Charles Singers logo. Choose from sizes XS,S,M,L,XL,2X. PLUS the Bushes & Briars CD PLUS the digital download of the album. (Need an extra T-shirt or two? Order 2 additional for $45, 3 for $65.)

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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    Experience the memories of the Bushes & Briars concert and recording project with this custom-made 8x10 hardbound coffee table photo album, featuring lyrics from the program, photos, and song dedications. Give as a gift to a singer or a loved one/friend to cherish PLUS the Bushes & Briars CD PLUS a digital download of the album.

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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    St. Charles Singers CD bundle. Enjoy the Bushes & Briars CD along with the following CDs produced by SCS: Christmas in St. Charles, I Know Where I'm Going, From Out of a Wood, and Copeland Songs with the Elgin Symphony. PLUS the Bushes & Briars Libretto of all of the folk songs. Makes a great gift package.

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    Pledge $150 or more About $150

    St. Charles Singers isn't just about folk music. Get 2 tickets to Mozart & More (the choir and Metropolis Chamber Orchestra), on Friday, September 11, 2015 in Elgin, IL at 7:30pm. PLUS enjoy the Bushes & Briars CD PLUS the digital download of the album. PLUS our custom Libretto with all of the song lyrics

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    Pledge $150 or more About $150

    St. Charles Singers isn't just about folk music. Get 2 tickets to our Spring concert featuring Herbert Howels' Requiem, on Saturday, April 16, 2016 at Grace Lutheran Church in River Forest, IL at 7:30pm. PLUS enjoy the Bushes & Briars CD PLUS the digital download of the album. PLUS enjoy our beautifully designed, side saddle-stitched Libretto

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    Pledge $175 or more About $175

    Local Illinois artist Greg Chapman will be painting music-inspired scenes with water color during the performance on June 13, 2015 of Book 1 from the Oxford Book of Folk Songs for Choirs. You can get a Limited Edition 8x10 canvas print of this unique art piece ready to hang in your home.

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    Pledge $175 or more About $175

    Local Illinois artist Robert Pennington will be painting music-inspired scenes with oil during the performance on June 14, 2015 of Book 2 from the Oxford Book of Folk Songs for Choirs. You can get a Limited Edition 8x10 canvas print of this unique art piece ready to hang in your home.

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    Pledge $300 or more About $300

    Become a sponsor or dedicate one of the 25 songs on the recording of Bushes & Briars. Name yourself or someone you care about and we'll include your name or their name in the CD album insert, post your dedication on our social media pages and on our website. PLUS you'll receive the Bushes & Briars CD PLUS the digital download of the album. PLUS you will be sent the lovely Libretto with all of the lyrics. PLUS a custom certificate of dedication/sponsorship which lists the song you have chosen and the person to whom it is dedicated or sponsored by (suitable for framing). (We'll contact you about which song you have chosen.)

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    Pledge $400 or more About $400

    Famed British composer and conductor John Rutter arranged four pieces which appear in the Oxford Book of Folk Songs for Choirs and which appear in the Bushes & Briars recording. John Rutter will personally autograph and sign a dedication copy of Book 1 & Book 2 for you or someone you wish to remember. PLUS you'll receive the Bushes & Briars CD PLUS the digital download of the album. PLUS the beautiful Libretto PLUS the coffee table book with comments from John Rutter.

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    Adopt a Singer! All 32 of our singers, plus our director Jeffery Hunt, can be "adopted" with a sponsorship for the 2015-2016 concert season. Ticket revenue provides less than 25% of the funds needed to operate the choir. Your name will be featured in each printed program, on our website and social media pages. PLUS you'll receive the Bushes & Briars CD PLUS the digital download of the album. PLUS enjoy our beautifully designed, side saddle-stitched Libretto. PLUS look sharp in your black long-sleeved high quality cotton T-shirt with our St. Charles Singers logo. PLUS travel in style with St. Charles Singers flexible luggage tags (set of 2) with plastic insert for your business card or label.

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    Pledge $750 or more About $750

    We'll bring the music to you! Enjoy 4-5 songs from the Bushes & Briar CD performed by a quartet from St. Charles Singers in your home or at your garden party this summer or early fall (local Chicago area only). PLUS you'll receive 4 copies of the Bushes & Briars CD PLUS the digital download of the album. PLUS enjoy 4 copies the Libretto.

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    Pledge $1,500 or more About $1,500

    As the baton in your hand moves, hear the choir sing as you conduct the St. Charles Singers in a song to be featured in concert at Baker Memorial Methodist Church in St. Charles, IL on Sunday, April 17, 2016.

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    Pledge $2,500 or more About $2,500

    Enjoy dinner for 4 along with St. Charles Singers' music director Jeffrey Hunt and his bride Cheri (6 total) with a 4-course dinner and wines prepared by a culinary school trained chef (local Chicago area only) in your home or at a mutually agreed upon location. Hear from Jeff the stories behind the songs, the recording experience and about the bright future of classical choral music. PLUS you'll receive (4) copies of the Bushes & Briars CD PLUS the digital download of the album featuring all 25 Folks Songs for Choirs from Books 1&2 as recorded by St. Charles Singers. Includes digital copy of the album insert featuring lyrics and photos, PLUS enjoy (4) copies of our beautifully designed, side saddle-stitched libretto featuring all of the lyrics from the 25 Bushes & Briars folk songs. Sing along with the Singers. Offered between July - October 2015

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  19. Select this reward

    Pledge $3,800 or more About $3,800

    Final 24 hours Special Reward! Secure a pair of LIFETIME season tickets to all future St. Charles Singers concerts! Now you and another special person don’t ever have to never miss a performance because they were sold out! PLUS you'll receive (4) copies of the Bushes & Briars CD, PLUS the digital download of the album, PLUS the lovely libretto, PLUS the coffee table book! (Note: St. Charles Singers typically 3-4 concerts per year-adult ticket are normally $30-$40 each.)

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Funding period

- (28 days)