Choir! Choir! Choir! has come a long way since its inception as a weekly drop-in, a no-commitment singing event, back in February, 2011. Founded by Daveed Goldman and Nobu Adilman, the group caught international attention last winter when it performed Space Oddity at the AGO in tribute to David Bowie – skyrocketing to the top of various social media trending lists and winning it a concert at New York’s Carnegie Hall alongside Debbie Harry, Cyndi Lauper, Michael Stipe, and The Flaming Lips.. C!C!C! brings its inimitable style to Art Toronto’s Opening Night Preview on October 27, so we caught up with Nobu for a quick chat.
AGO: Can you describe the Choir! Choir! Choir! experience for someone who has never been?
Nobu: You show up (at Clinton’s Tavern’s backroom), get a lyric sheet, Daveed and I teach you an original arrangement of a hit tune, and we sing. There are no auditions but we will tell you when you’re messing up! By the end of it, you probably feel more energized, have made some new friends, had a couple drinks, and will be singing that song for rest of the week, or until you come back for more.
AGO: What makes Choir! Choir! Choir! different from other singing groups or choirs?
Nobu: I’ve never been in a choir outside of C!C!C! so it’s hard for me to say, but from what I’ve seen it’s probably that we’re not interested in behaving “properly.” We mess with the original songs to fit our vibe. We like when people in the crowd engage with us. We want every night to be an amazing party.
AGO: How do you pick the songs for events like Art Toronto?
Nobu: We outsource those decisions to a company on Baffin Island. Or we choose the tunes we think will really get our singers and the crowd most engaged. You choose the answer you most want to believe.
AGO: Will you be engaging Art Toronto’s guests in singing?
Nobu: We always do!