Sep 112015

Tenor Bill Horst has sung with Cantabile for five years. He began singing in church choirs in grade school and went on to be part of a high school barbershop quartet called “The Clef Dwellers” that performed for many local events and appeared in a state-wide televised program, Illinois Sings. The quartet did a professional recording at Universal Recording Studios and was filmed at the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago. Bill continued to sing with the Illinois State University Men’s Glee Club, the Hewlett-Packard corporate choir, and the now-disbanded Boulder Jewish choir, Shir-Halev.

Born and raised in the Christian faith, Bill now considers himself “almost Jewish (all but formal conversion) having married a ‘Nice Jewish Girl’ and raising our kids in the Reformed Jewish tradition.”

Bill holds a Bachelor of Science degree in mathematics with an emphasis in computer science, and his professional career has been in computer software with the longest stretch being 21 years at Hewlett-Packard in Silicon Valley. Bill is a Clan Dunbar descendant, and in honor of the Clan he sometimes wears a Scottish tam to Cantabile rehearsals. He earned the rank of Eagle Scout in 1966 and was later inducted into the “Order of the Arrow”.

Bill’s favorite choral piece is Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony which he sang in a community chorus, in German, about 40 years ago. “The fourth movement, with words from Schiller’s ‘Ode to Joy’ (Freude! Freude!) is perhaps the most moving music I have ever heard or sung. To quote from the movie A Clockwork Orange:

Oh bliss! Bliss and heaven! Oh, it was gorgeousness and gorgeousity made flesh. It was like a bird of rarest-spun heaven metal or like silvery wine flowing in a spaceship, gravity all nonsense now. As I slooshied*, I knew such lovely pictures!

– Alex DeLarge, listening to Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony.”

Bill loves puns and his favorite comes from Groucho Marx: “Time flies like an arrow. Fruit flies like a banana.”

Given a week with no other commitments, Bill would “practice all my Cantabile music really, really well!”

*According to the Urban Dictionary, “slooshied” means “listened”.