Press Release Sept. 24, 2011

The Rockridge Chorale from Oakland California under musical director, Devi de Sam Lazaro-Jameson will be travelling to the city of Bangalore India early next year. They will be joining the Minsteracres Rubato Singers from Newcastle England to form Choruses Without Borders, and in turn will be joined by an Orphan Boys choir (ages 7-14) and orchestral players from Bangalore. 

For the past eight years, the Rockridge Chorale, under the direction of Devi has brought choral music to the East Bay. Whether in small recitals at assisted living facilities or major fundraising concerts for victims of disasters, (Darfur and Haiti) the singers focus on the power of music to lift the human spirit and build community

Their aim is to raise awareness of the needs of children and adults with severe mobility problems arising from cerebral palsy, chronic arthritis and other crippling illnesses. Solving these problems requires mobility aids like wheel chairs and expensive drug treatments. Rehabilitation, help with education and training for employment is also critical. Above all, many sufferers need orthopaedic surgery and physiotherapy they cannot afford.

The Arthritis Foundation and the Hosmat hospital group based in Bangalore are driving charity based projects to provide for a huge need which is little recognised and has virtually no priority in state provided services which are naturally focussed on wider endemic conditions and preventative programmes.

The purpose of the Bangalore concert is to bring the plight of many thousands of people with unresolved but eminently treatable problems to the attention of potential long-term benefactors.

A concert is being held at Our Lady of Lourdes Church, 2808 Lakeshore Ave. on October 1 at 2:00 p.m. to raise the funds the singers require to undertake this trip and to carry school supplies to the Orphan Boys choir group.

Acclaimed by the Boston Globe for his ability to “continually impress with his beautiful voice and acting,” baritone Nikolas Nackley is equally regarded for his work on concert and operatic stages throughout the West Coast, New England, and abroad.  He has performed numerous roles with companies including Opera Boston, Boston Modern Orchestra Project, Boston Lyric Opera, Emmanuel Music, Providence Opera, Festival Opera, Berkley Opera and Granite State Opera.    Most recently he was heard as Harry Easter in Oakland East Bay Symphony’s “Street Scene”, Baron Douphol in Festival Opera’s “La Traviata” and Gregorio in Livermore Valley Opera’s “Romeo et Juliette.”  Oratorio credits include solo performances with the Handel and Haydn Society, the Orchestra of Emmanuel Music, the Oakland East Bay Symphony, the Berkeley Symphony Orchestra, Boulder Bach Festival and Carmel Bach Festival performing, among others, Brahms, Mozart, and Fauré’s Requiems, Bach’s B Minor Mass, St. Matthew and St. John Passions, Beethoven’s 9th Symphony and Mass in C Major, and Handel’s Messiah.  He was a 2007 Virginia Best Adams Fellow at the Carmel Bach festival and received his B.M. and M.M. degrees from the New England Conservatory of Music.  A native of the Bay Area, Mr. Nackley recently moved back to California after having lived in Boston for thirteen years. 

Anny Cheng, an active pianist, has collaborated numerous concerts with singers, instrumentalists and choirs in the major cities in the US and in Taiwan. She was invited as a guest artist with Arizona MusicFest and joined the faculty of the Tanglewood Institute’s Young Artist Vocal Program as a principal Vocal Coach and Musical Director working with artists Sharon Daniels, Phyllis Hoffman, Penelope Bitzas, Simon Estes and the legendary soprano Phyllis Curtin. She also joined the staff pianist at Viola Workout in Crested Butte, Colorado. She collaborated with Robert Horton, the president of Texas Choral Director Association and served as a coach and staff pianist at Cy-Fair College in Houston. In the past two years, she has collaborated with Rockridge Chorale, Masterworks Chorale, Crystal Children Choir, West Bay Opera, South Valley Voice Studio with Allen Cathcart, founder of Peninsula Teen Opera and Stanford University. Anny completed her Doctoral degree in Collaborative Piano at Arizona State University, Graduate Performance Diploma in Collaborative Piano at Longy School of Music and Master of Music in Piano Accompanying and Coaching at Westminster Choir College. Anny will travel with the Rockridge Chorale to Bangalore India to accompany Chorus without Borders Singers and to collaborate with the instrumentalists.   

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