As we prepare for the opening of our “American Songbook” program on Saturday, April 22, we asked soprano Katelyn Lee to share with us her experience working to prepare the music.
First off, why Chicago a cappella? Why did you start singing with CAC?
Chicago a cappella is special to me for many reasons. It allows me to sing in a variety of different styles with a world-class group of singers that I also count as friends. Being part of this group enables each of us to shine as soloists while maintaining an ensemble sound unlike any other that I have been a part of. It is truly magical!
What has been the most memorable aspect of working on the Songbook program with CAC?
I count myself extremely grateful to work with our music director, Paul Langford. He knows this repertoire inside and out, and his ability to highlight the best artistic qualities in all of us is astounding. Paul’s musical ideas are thoughtful, exciting, and specific. He also values our input and has great respect for each one of us as people and artists. The feeling is mutual. We are incredibly lucky to have him.
Do you have a personal connection with any of the pieces on the program?
I am particularly fond of the ballads on this concert. Get ready to feel all the feels on songs such as “Embraceable You,” “Summertime,” and “The Very Thought of You.” But really, I love every piece on this program. It is very special. There are more than a few musical moments that give me goosebumps!
What have you found to be the most appealing aspect of the music on this program?
I have always loved the music of this time period, and frankly, I don’t know anyone who doesn’t. This repertoire is universally adored. I think we all have that one particular piece in the Great American Songbook that evokes a special memory. For me, it is “Someone to Watch Over Me.” It makes me think of my own love story, and I will never get tired of singing or hearing it.
What would you tell someone that may not be as familiar with this music to get them to want to come to a show?
I promise you will smile from ear to ear throughout this program. You’ll laugh, you might cry from the beauty, and most of all, you’ll have a ball! After the show, you will come out humming your favorite tune. There is truly something for everyone on this program. Trust me, you don’t want to miss out!