I attended the Joyful! Noise Sings Broadway concert recently at the historic First Baptist Church in Seattle. Kirkland’s own Melissa and Jeff Thirloway are part of the wonderful choral group that arranged and performed this thoroughly enjoyable musical concert.
The program featured songs from Broadway musicals, some very familiar and some undiscovered gems. The selection was a perfect combination of upbeat, inspirational, soulful, sad, mournful, joyful and energetic. Start with the depth and variety of the program, add the 22-member chorus that sang these songs in a manner that showed them off at their best, and you have a memorable evening that inspired a variety of emotions. The Joyful! Noise Choir sounds more like 52 people, with a range and volume so large they filled the sanctuary with music.
The program included songs from Godspell, Guys and Dolls, Oliver!, Les Miserables, Fiddler on the Roof, The Fantasticks, West Side Story, and many more. Particular favorites of mine were “Comedy Tonight” from A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum; “Good Morning Baltimore” from Hairspray; “The Impossible Dream” from Man of La Mancha; “Don’t Stop Believin’ ” from Rock of Ages; and the Hawaiian arrangement of “Somewhere over the Rainbow” from The Wizard of Oz.
There were solos, including violin and vocal solos by Ballard High School students, duets, and songs sung by the entire chorus. It was a tremendous experience that made the audience feel as if we had actually been to a Broadway musical. So many emotions were inspired: joy, excitement, sadness, appreciation for love and loss, humor. The chorus captured and overpowered us with their songs.
Jeff Thirloway directed the chorus and arranged the songs. He was full of enthusiasm and obviously a great director with the ability to keep the chorus energized. The highlight of the show was Melissa Thirloway, with a voice of incredible range and emotion.
Melissa stole the show with her commanding, soothing, and powerful singing talent. She brought down the house with her emotional solo of “How Could I Know” from The Secret Garden. If you have an opportunity to experience the musical talent of Melissa and Jeff, take it!
The only negative thing I can say about the concert is that we were confined to our seats. The music made you want to jump up and dance around the room! We look forward to hearing more from this amazing chorus.
Jessica Greenway, Kirkland