Jan. 20-21, 11 chorus students traveled to Stetson University’s School of Music in Deland for a choral festival. They learned five songs in which they performed with the other schools in attendance at a concert held on Saturday night.
The rehearsed songs were: “America the Beautiful,” “Make Me An Instrument of Thy Peace,” “Verleih ‘uns Frieden,” and “Fanfare for a Festival.” The men sang “We’ll Shout and Give Him Glory,” while the women sang “River.”
Thirty schools in total attended the clinic, including Lake Mary, Seminole and Lake Brantley.
Stetson’s School of Music professors selected three students to perform solos during the final concert; two of them were senior Stephen Pitters, who sang “Caro Mio Ben,” and senior Courtney Dzieiwior, who sang “Sebben Crudele.” The three students independently rehearsed the songs they picked with one of the school’s professors.
“Having so many people cheer me on was overwhelming and shocking, but I couldn’t have asked for a better experience,” Pitters said.
Chorus teacher Victoria Rathbun, currently on maternity leave, was unable to attend the clinic. In her place four chorus moms stepped in as chaperones.
The chorus department goes to this festival every year, but because of Hurricane Matthew, the date changed from Sept.to Jan. causing some people to drop out due to scheduling issues.
Regardless of these setbacks, students still said they enjoyed the experience.
“I would recommend it to other choir members because it is a really cool experience,” junior Elizabeth Bailey said. “If any of them are thinking of going to Stetson to pursue music, then they should come because you get to see what Stetson’s choir is like.”