This week I want to shine a spotlight on one of our extraordinary musicians, Dr. Cina Crisara. Cina (CHEE-na) is a cherished member of the Conspirare family who sings frequently with the professional Company of Voices, most recently as a member of the ensemble that toured the Midwest in early March. She also serves as a section leader for the Conspirare Symphonic Choir and occasionally assists with conducting duties.
We are incredibly fortunate to have Cina in our midst. As a beautifully artful singer, gifted pianist, and superb conductor, she steps into many roles within our organization. We all love Cina not only for her many talents but for the generous spirit and inspiration she brings to our music-making.
Very recently, the Conspirare Symphonic Choir was invited to sing for the Andrea Bocelli concert at the Frank Erwin Center in February. Clearly, this was an exciting invitation to which we wanted to say yes, but I had a schedule conflict with the event, as did Conspirare associate conductor Richard Gabrillo.
It occurred to me that Cina might be the ideal person to prepare the choir for this concert. She is experienced in conducting many styles; while director of choral activities at the University of Nebraska at Omaha, a post she held for sixteen years, she was also chorus master for the Omaha Symphony and Opera Omaha. Her vast experience with the operatic repertoire and the strength of her musicianship and leadership were ideally suited for the Bocelli collaboration. So I asked her, and she said yes!
Cina and the choir were splendid; she prepared the singers expertly, in only a few rehearsals, to perform all the planned music. Additionally, as is often the case with new situations and collaborators, this event held some last minute surprises. She adapted quickly and brilliantly and made the chorus feel ready for anything that might possibly happen. The singers sounded terrific and I am so grateful to Cina for her great work with them. It is very special to have this level of talent, experience, and insight in our wonderful family of musicians. Cina is one of the many reasons it is really fun to come to work at Conspirare. I respect and love her and I just wanted to tell you about her!