Thursday, June 19, 2014

It's a Musical! It's a Play! It's ENCORE!

Recall the last time you experienced something amazing! It might have been a great meal…or an incredible vacation…or the miracle of childbirth…or an awe-inspiring sighting of a UFO! Bottom line, these experiences had a “wow” factor that made them memorable. Each is a unique and unforgettable experience in its own special way.

An unforgettable experience is the creative force behind each of Encore Vocal Ensemble’s performances. We carefully craft everything we do, from the song selections, to the script development, to the costume creation, in order to bring to the stage an unparalleled performance.

But the true question is what makes Encore performances so unique, so unforgettable, and so fabulous?!

Encore has developed a special “formula” that leverages a special blend of creative ingenuity that may remind you of other theater experiences. We are part musical, part theatrical play, and all passion!  Our approach to performance is based on our passion for music. We seek to display a variety of music from both stage and screen that visually tells a story. We weave these song selections into an original Encore script that takes the performance from a mere choral performance into the realms of theatrical storytelling that incorporates the best of musical and play performance. Our satirical undertones and locally-grown talent blend together into a rich, dynamic show that no other group in the nation has yet to replicate. We rely on the contributions of our talented singers, playwrights, musical directors and costume designers to deliver a show that fosters community spirit and a passion for the arts. 

Check out our next performance, Out of Time, at The Garfield Theatre on June 21st and 22nd. Tickets can be purchased online at or at the door. The mere show description alone highlights our unique nature and creativity:

A Futuristic, Post-Apocalyptic, Time-Traveling, Steam Punk, Dystopian,
Wormhole-Filled Musical Journey through the Ages.  

Also, be sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and right here on our blog series, where future shows and events will be announced. Don’t forget to check out our past performances on YouTube.

Monday, June 2, 2014

Costume Creation - How To from the Encore Creators

Our imaginations can be our greatest asset! They provide fuel for everything from creating the perfect meal, to planning the fun vacation, to impressing your boss with your latest idea! But sometimes we all need a little creative inspiration. Encore Vocal Ensemble shares a peek into our costume creative madness below so that next time you need to play dress up, you will be prepared to unleash the full fury of your creative genius!

Kacey Wehr, Costume Director for Encore, provides some insight into the process we use to create an eclectic and unique costume montage for each of our shows.

Kacey provides Encore performers with a simple starting point of thinking of the genre you want to portray. For instance, you may be thinking cowboy western, Italian mafia, or creepy ghost. This will enable you to then list out key words and images that come to mind. Let’s say you want to go for a cowboy (or cowgirl) look. Some key words that come to mind are: west, gold, guns, saloon, cowboy hat, boots, spurs, whiskey. Additionally, think of image categories that come to mind such as Gold Rush, John Wayne, Ghost Town, etc.

Now that you’ve created a list of words and images, hit the keyboard and search for images that inspire. Google Images is a great place to start, but be sure to use the Advance option to narrow down your search. Pinterest is another excellent source. You can search by keyword and explore various Pin boards of users. Many times there are Pin boards dedicated to a certain topics -- such as Western Costumes -- that make your search that much easier.

Next, Kacey advises that you search your closet to see what you may already have. Also, don’t be shy to ask your friends and family what they may have…you may be surprised to find out they have past outfits that could suit you perfectly! Keep in mind that even though you may have started with one costume concept, you may uncover some items that lead you from cowboy to astronaut. Don’t be afraid to keep options open or consider mixed-genre options such as a Space Cowboy or the first Ghost President. The options are limitless!

Once you have explored options (and dug out all the closets you can gain access to), it may be time to hit streets and e-Shops for further options. Kacey recommends checking out your local Thrift shops and Goodwill stores. You’d be surprised what may be lurking on their hangers! Also, if the season is right, you may consider exploring Halloween shops or year-round costume stores. Though they be a little pricier, if you are dedicated to a fabulous idea, then the investment might be worth it. Finally, the wealth of items available online is incredible. It may take time to hunt down some items (especially if unique), but may be worth the effort if you find a perfect match and the perfect price! For instance, you may be looking for a rhinestone-studded pink cowboy hat. Although you could create one from an existing cowboy hat (think Michael’s craft shop), a quick online search may result in a real find! In fact, I just Googled pink cowboy hat and immediately found options that were less than $10!

The final step in any costume endeavor is to run it by some other people (family, friends, colleagues) to see if they could provide any further ideas or recommendations. This may be an important step, especially if you are dressing for a work party and are unsure if the costume is “appropriate”, or if you are, let’s say, in a show (i.e. Encore Vocal Ensemble performance) in which you need to receive approval from the costume coordinator. Once you receive thumbs up, start building your new costume! 

Below are some online resources you may find useful in your creative process. In the meantime, check out our upcoming show Out of Time on June 21st and 22nd, 2014. CLICK HERE to buy tickets and view details.



Friday, May 16, 2014

Time Travel – Tale or Truth?

The fascination with time travel has captivated the minds of people for generations. A simple Google search on time travel theory serves up over 193 million results alone! Why the fascination? Why the multitude of theories? Why the curiosity of visiting the past or seeing the future? Well, many would chalk it up to simple human curiosity. Others may have a more ambitious angle.gains of fortune, gathering of political power, altering the present by changing the pastthe list is numerous.

To put it in simply, time travel is moving between different points in time. Sounds simple, but conceiving of the quantum mechanics and reality of such travel has astounded scientist, and sci-fi artists, for decades.

Terms such as special relativity or general relativity, wormholes, cosmic strings, and paradoxes are profoundly apparent in various theories of time travel. From Albert Einsteins theories to Star Treks multitude of storylines to Marty McFlys adventures in Back to the Future, time travel holds the fascination of possibility; curiosity of understanding the past, and hope for a prosperous future. These may seem idealistic uses of time travel, but considering the dangers of time travel our intentions will dictate the results of our actions.

You may be wondering why Encore Vocal Ensemble is blogging about time travel? Well, we consider ourselves a ragtag group of singers/performers that embrace songs from all eras of time. Our passion for music, for lyrics, inspires us to explore all dimensions of time within music. In fact, we are so fascinated by it we have hired our very own time traveling Professor of History to help us traverse the barriers of time and space in our pursuit of musical bliss!

Now, we leave the question of whether time travel is actually possible up to you, and have provided a variety of scientific and entertainment resources on time travel below for you to peruse. In the meantime, come see our future showcase of past musical hits in our upcoming show Out of Time on June 21st and 22nd, 2014. CLICK HERE to buy tickets and view details.



Sunday, February 16, 2014

Letter from the President & Founder

Welcome to OnStage with Encore Vocal Ensemble, a new blog series from Encore Vocal Ensemble (Encore), dedicated to informing our supporters and the community about our diverse organization, performers, events, and other culturally enlightening topics and theatrical news that will surely engage your passion for the arts!

Encore is the result of a passion and vision of our founder and three year Encore Board President, David Badillo. Below is a recent letter to supporters and the community that was released in January of 2014.

It sure has been an exciting 2013 for Encore Vocal Ensemble of San Diego! We’ve produced two of our most successful shows to date in addition to nearly doubling our membership and branching out by performing at cabarets and other special events.

2013 was a very creative year for us. Under the direction of our incredible Music Director, Tim McKnight, our unique brand of cleverly themed productions blended with Encore’s special flavor of satire, yielded our spring production, ShowToons: Encore Gets Animated. This show revisited favorites from animated movie musicals and included some special performances from guest artist, Joey Landwehr.

In the fall we produced This is Halloween II: A Cabin in the Woods. This spooky comedy poked fun at popular horror films and included a wide variety of music from well-known musicals like Wicked to off-beat hits like Evil Dead the Musical. Encore is one of the few music groups where Halloween is the holiday concert of choice!

Encore found more exciting ways for audiences to hear us live. In 2013 we began producing cabaret shows at Martini’s Above Fourth, one San Diego’s most popular new venues. Here, audiences could enjoy our sound in an intimate setting while sipping their favorite cocktails in a more casual setting.

As we continued to expand our performance opportunities, Encore sang our first December Night’s program in Balboa Park to a group of very dedicated fans who braved some unusually inclement weather just to hear us perform. 

Encore has filled an important niche in the arts community by bringing the best in musical theatre and film to audiences at an affordable cost, packaged in a fun, dynamic, and surprising way. Our outstanding choral numbers are joined by small group numbers, duets, and amazing soloists wrapped up in a review style format with hilarious sketch comedy you won’t see anywhere else.

We look forward to continuing this trend in 2014 and would like to thank all of our supporters and donors for our amazing success. We hope that you will join us for our Time Travel concert on June 21st and 22nd and our Rock Broadway concert on November 22nd and 23rd. Both of these shows will include all the incredible music and hysterical comedy that our audiences have grown to love.

Have an amazing 2014!

David Badillo
Encore Board President