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d e b u t a l b u m r e l e a s e — f a l l 2 0 1 3
Welcome to the new official website for Four Corners. Please take a look around! There are exciting new photos and previews for our new album in the gallery. Be sure to check out the schedule and stay up-to-date on all of our upcoming performances in order to catch us live. There are many new merchandise items including the pre-order of our debut album available in our new online store! Also, Four Corners is available for clinics and workshop sessions at local schools! for more information about our mission to enhance and create opportunity for vocal jazz education, click on "outreach". Want to book us for a performance or vocal jazz workshop? Don't hesitate to click "contact". Also find us on facebook, twitter, instagram, and read our wordpress blog. We'll see you around.  THE SINGERS
Praised for her diversity as a musician, Chelsea has garnered acclaim for her performance as a jazz singer as well as an operatic soloist. In the last year, Chelsea has been invited to study and perform operatic repertoire in Graz, Austria with the American Institute of Musical Studies and has traveled with WMU's Gold Company to perform in Vaison-la-Romaine, France, for the International Choralies Festival. In Opera Grand Rapids’ 2013 Collegiate Vocal Competition, Chelsea was awarded first place. She also took first place this year in the Great Lakes Regional and Michigan State NATS competitions, for the second year in a row, and has twice been awarded the annual Jessye Norman Scholarship of Promise from Great Lakes Regional NATS. Chelsea has recently performed in Opera Grand Rapids' "Samson and Delilah" (chorus) and with the Western Michigan University Opera Studio as Laurie in "The Tender Land" and Werther's Sophie (cameo) in "Die Fledermaus."
Brooke Lauritzen is a two-time Downbeat Award-winning vocalist known for her versatility and emotive performance style. In October 2009 she was named Sennheiser’s Artist of the Month after working closely with the GRAMMY award-winning vocal jazz quartet New York Voices just before beginning her undergraduate studies in jazz voice at Western Michigan University. There she refined her voice as a solo artist as well as an accomplished part-singer in the internationally renowned vocal jazz ensemble, Gold Company, under the direction of Dr. Stephen Zegree and Professor Duane Shields-Davis. During her time at WMU she had the opportunity to work with such artists as Kurt Elling, Edward Simon, Janis Siegel, Paquito D’Rivera, Roger Treece, Fred Hersch, and many more. Whether Brooke is performing for one person or thousands, her music is always honest, intimate, and soulful.
A lifelong pursuit of music started for Nich at the age of 8. His passion began at the piano with composing and arranging classics in the style of ragtime, blues, and jazz. Vocal jazz had taken hold of Nich's musical pursuits while attending Western Michigan University, during which he studied under or interacted with great jazz musicians and esteemed educators including Billy Hart, David Baker, Fred Hersch, Ed Simon, Darmon Meader, and Peter Eldridge, as well as the highly esteemed faculty at WMU. Throughout his career, he has been privileged enough to have performed alongside greats such as Donny McCaslin, Bob Mintzer, Kurt Elling, Roger Treece, Matt Hughes, and Phil Palombi; as well to have performed in venues and festivals such as Carnegie Hall, the Allen Room in Jazz at Lincoln Center, the Gilmore International Keyboard Festival, and Jazz Educators Network. In April 2011, Nich released his debut album All in a Day, which won a Downbeat Student Music Award.
Jack Shales grew up in Chicagoland, a hot bed of vocal jazz education, and studied at Western Michigan University where he completed his B.M. in Jazz Studies. At WMU, Jack attained two downbeat awards for performing with the internationally renowned Gold Company as well as with the Gold Company Sextet and rubbed elbows with jazz industry greats as a solo and ensemble singer. Highlights include recording “Blue Rondo a la Turk” with arranger and engineer Roger Treece, the mastermind behind Bobby McFerrin’s Grammy-nominated album, Vocabularies, as well as sharing the stage with Kurt Elling, Paquito D’Rivera, and the New York Voices. Jack is an accomplished arranger with experience in writing for vocal groups, instrumental combos, big bands, and his own solo music. This summer his arrangement of “Slip Slidin’ Away” was featured in a Paul Simon songbook of choral arrangements sung at the massive Choralies 2013 festival in Vaison-La-Romaine, France.
Against the backdrop of Kalamazoo, Michigan, Chelsea Helm, Brooke Lauritzen, Nich Mueller, and Jack Shales formed the vocal jazz quartet Four Corners in October 2009 as students at Western Michigan University and have since been actively making music across the Midwest and beyond. Now approaching their four-year anniversary and the end of a successful Kickstarter campaign, the "Corners" are set to release their highly anticipated debut album featuring inventive arrangements, dynamic vocal harmony, and a virtuosic band including Jeremy Siskind–piano, Christian Euman–drums, Jordan Richards–bass, Andrew Rathbun–tenor saxophone, and Jon Ailabouni–trumpet. Pre-order the upcoming album today!
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