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Home > Main > Lo & Flo present: A Transatlantic A Cappella Q&A

Lo & Flo present: A Transatlantic A Cappella Q&A

by Lo Barreiro & Florian Städtler

This article is the result of a real 21st century relationship, a transatlantic encounter of the digital kind, a musical conversation across the pond. It features a woman and a man from different countries, continents and cultures who have decided to get to know each other’s world a bit better by simply asking each other 10 questions.

Lo Barreiro & Christopher M. Diaz (Mouthoff Show)

Lauren “Lo” Barreiro – according to – is “a recent Boston transplant from Tallahassee, Florida”, who started studying voice at the age of eleven and fell in love with a cappella during college. At Florida State University, she studied voice performance and recreation management and directed the FSU’s first and only all-female a cappella group, the AcaBelles. Today she’s a CASA ambassador in Boston and has led workshops, panels, and masterclasses at SoJam 2010, became a team member of The Vocal Company as a consultant, producer, and arranger, and founded the all-female professional sextet Musae (@MusaeVocal). Not to forget, Lo writes about her teaching and singing experience on her own blog Acalosophy.

Clare Wheeler (The Swingle Singers) & Florian Städtler

Florian Städtler lives and works out of Freiburg, Germany. After studies of jazz & pop guitar and working as a band leader, arranger and composer for several years, he slowly but surely moved from the microphone to the telephone. When he decided to found his company SpielPlanVier in 2003, he had worked for the pioneering Jazzchor Freiburg for more than ten years, organizing tours to Japan, South Korea, Russia and all over Europe. Today Florian has established his agency as one of the leading artist management companies for vocal music, working with groups like The Swingle Singers, The Real Group, Rockapella, VOCES8 and The Boxettes. In 2009 he started blogging about vocal and a cappella music via Vocal Blog and one year later started the process of founding the European Voices Association (EVA).

What started with some tweets between @loloalexandra and @vocalblog (or was it some Facebook comments?) led to a mutual wish to learn more about perspectives on vocal music on both sides of the Atlantic. It’s basically a Q&A (question & answer) dialogue that’s going on…we actually don’t know for how long, the original idea was ten questions and ten answers by Lo & Flo. We’ll see what’ll happen.  These posts will be short and will be uploaded about twice a week on one or both of the blogs. So here we go, let the Lo & Flo A Cappella Q&A start, as a humble step to make a cappella people in the US and the EU aware of each other.

Lo’s question #1: “Why do you, or really, do you think the American and European vocal music aesthetics are so different?”
Flo’s answer #1: “That’s a big question. Firstly, yes: vocal music aesthetics as well as aesthetics in general are different. That’s simply because music on both continents is based on very different cultures. From an non-US point of view, the States – although based on a history of immigration – are much more ONE region than the (still very young) European Union. The European diversity is reflected by various completely different cultures ranging from Icelandish avantgarde pop to Spanish hard rock or the classical tradition from Mozart, Beethoven, Chopin, Wagner, Shostakovitch, Stockhausen etc. The history of dozens of completely different mini-states in Europe resulted in different languages, different currencies, different school systems, different media, and – of course – different music. That’s why in my opinion the differences between two vocal groups from Finland and Portugal are most probably much stronger than between two vocal groups from Maryland and Texas.

Another interesting aspect: Europe’s vocal music education and organisation is exactly twenty years behind the development in the USA. The first real jazz choir in Germany was founded in 1990. The first a (small) cappella group in 1981. And every new group over here will have to ask themselves one big question regarding their style: “What’s the ratio between the incredibly powerful influence of the Anglo-American culture of popular entertainment and the cultural roots of the country we come from?”

Now it’s your turn: Tell us your opinion, give us your answer and let us know what makes US a cappella so different from European vocal music. We would love you to join the conversation, thanks for your comments!

If you want to get in touch with 800+ a cappella activists worldwide, join the Vocal Blog Facebook group or follow Vocal Blog on Twitter.

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  1. Yolmer Hurtado Ramírez
    6. Juli 2011, 17:11 | #1

    Please receive a warm greeting from Colombia in the name of the members of Legatto 7.

    Legatto 7 is an sextet conformed of female and male voices acapella, using the results of its work to leave 14 years of big effort in its second album that now is your hands. The rhythms go from pop, rock, to American Seaside regional music. Songs of the Latin repertoire mixed with songs composed by the members of Legatto 7, on which they take advantage of the vocal possibilities of one mezzo soprano, one contralto, two tenors, one baritone and one bass, transcending and going from the basic of vocal trough the music as a band. Always with the certain that music of Legatto 7 is made for young people and may be heard for all the people, in order to help the musical development of our country with the aim of project it to the world.

    We are searching make agreements or projects with institutions and groups that help us to take our work to their countries in order to show it trough a group of concerts to promote our second album. We know already that this is a good possibility to build relations and also to exchange information. We want to know about your management services, search support and help in order to make true our objective.

    I extend you in this time our video clip and the interview offered in CM& news program, releasing our second album, we’d love to make our concerts launch of our second album as part of their festivals, concerts and cultural activities.

    Legatto 7 offers a performance that transcends the basic choir scene to the scenic elements that make a big show come true. And i think that your institution is a excelent option for share it.

    We would like you to help us with your support and knowledge so that your institution let us show our job and second production (album) in the world.

    Likewise I’ll thank you if you provide me with some information about organizations that might be interest in this propose (names, email, web pages, etc.).

    Our Promotional Video Clip “Cantinesco Divertimento. ”

    Interview offered in CM &

    “Legatto 7 cantando por Haití”:

    “La Vida es un Carnaval” Por Legatto 7:

    Further information can be found by mailing us. We will be more than happy to assist you.


    Yolmer Hurtado Ramírez ♪
    Representante y Barítono Legatto7
    Cel. (57) 300 2835710
    Director Coral / Licenciado en Música
    Profesional en Mercadeo Nacional e Internacional
    Especialista en Gerencia y Gestión Cultural

    Colombia – Sur América

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