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Umbrian Serenades: participants' perspectives
by Jill and Bob von Trebra for Vocal Area Network
Posted April 11, 2009

Umbrian Serenades at the DuomoUmbrian Serenades was an awesome experience! We -- Jill and Bob von Trebra -- joined the group during the summer of 2008, and we loved it!

Jill went to sing.  She is a professional music educator, and has had the pleasure during her career of performing with some outstanding groups in some beautiful locations: The Westminster Choir, the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Lyric Opera of Chicago, to name a few. But this was truly something different -- a group of some professional, but mostly amateur musicians who sing purely for enjoyment. And this was an enjoyable experience. Paulo Faustini and Pam Simpson (replacing Holly Phares, who was unable to participate that year) did an amazing job of blending the voices of these people, many of who met for the first time in the Rome airport at the start of the trip, into a truly beautiful ensemble.

After rehearsing in Spoleto for about a week, we performed four times. The first was an impromptu performance in the "sacred woods" on the mountain