Cantus, a men’s vocal ensemble based in Minneapolis-St. Paul, brought its dynamic, distinctive vocal music to Norfolk Academy on Tuesday through the school’s partnership with the Virginia Arts Festival.
The a cappella group, which created extraordinary rhythms and harmonies through vocal inflection (and some occasional snapping, clapping, and heel tapping), sang a range of numbers, many of which had a contemporary resonance. “Twitter Song” by Ingrid Michaelson is part of the group’s Alone Together tour, which “explores what it means to connect in a modern world where our ability to communicate has never been easier or more advanced, but where the rifts between nations, among communities, and in individual relationships only seem to widen.” The group also performed songs from Broadway shows, including Matilda and Dear Evan Hansen.
The performances for Middle and Upper School students were designated as the Lyons performance, an annual arts event that honors Mr. and Mrs. Tom and Joan Lyons. Before introducing Cantus, Mr. Manning spoke about the instrumental role that the couple played in the construction of the Tucker Arts Center and their longstanding dedication to the school.
Cantus, which has received three prestigious Chorus America awards and performs more than 60 concerts a year, will do a public performance in the Johnson Theater as part of the Arts Festival this evening (April 30) at 7:30 p.m.