In the autumn of 2014, Claire and Christina reached out to us again with good news — they had received funding to launch a second, longer video after the huge success of their teaser video from the spring before.
Claire said that she loved the first “teaser” because when people asked her “So, what is choral theatre exactly?” she could whip out her phone, pull up the video, and say “This!” — instead of facing the daunting task of explaining all that Xara is and means to her.
But now it was time to build the next piece of the Xara story. Christina and Claire tried gallantly to verbalize the communal, transformative, driving force behind Xara’s high-calibre performances. It is grounded in a sisterly affection that belies something much more powerful: their profound passion for choral performance has bonded them, and their journey to perfection has kindled their outward kindness.
In the end, it was a personal note that a singer had written to the two leaders that crystallized what they were trying to express to us: A singer who was leaving the group had written to Claire and Christina to express her gratitude for transformation she had undergone during her time in the ensemble. The singer had begun a nervous, introverted girl, and emerged a more confident woman.
The more they thought about it, Christina and Claire realized that the song “Here on These Branches” (also the title of their first CD) is allegorical of the Xara experience: being embraced, and emerging transfigured. It’s no coincidence that the Xara logo is a butterfly.