Cabarrus

All-County Chorus will include 130 students

Rebecca Buchan, front, chorus teacher at Hickory Ridge High School, plays the keyboard as she helps the singers warm up during the practice for the Cabarrus High School All-County Chorus.
Rebecca Buchan, front, chorus teacher at Hickory Ridge High School, plays the keyboard as she helps the singers warm up during the practice for the Cabarrus High School All-County Chorus. Marty Price

For 15 straight years, the chorus teachers from six local public schools have -picked their most talented singers to perform as part of the Cabarrus High School All-County Chorus.

On Nov. 4, Rebecca Buchan from Hickory Ridge, Jennifer Cook from Cox Mill, Drew Howard from Northwest Cabarrus, Vivian Howard from Jay M. Robinson, Rachel Juliano from Concord and Ethan Price from Central Cabarrus were taking turns directing the students as they practiced their parts.

This was the only two-hour practice the group would have before working with guest conductor . Marc Foster, chairman of the Department of Music and director of Choral Activities at High Point University, on Nov. 13 and 14. Foster is a native of Concord and will bring the High Point University Chorus to perform Nov. 14 along with the students.

Trying to get the group of 130 students to form a polished unit, the teachers separated the tenors from the altos and the baritones from the sopranos, working with each section on their pitch for crucial parts of the music they were rehearsing. At one point, Vivian Howard was scolding the students, “don’t slide between notes,” she said. “I liked slides as a child, but I hate them now.”

When Drew Howard was directing the chorus, he stopped the singing at one point and said to the baritones, “if you don’t enjoy that B flat a little more, I am coming over there,” which caused everyone in the band room at Hickory Ridge High School to laugh.

Cody Bigby, 16, a tenor from Central Cabarrus, said he feels that the group will come together for an outstanding performance. “I like being with a group that has so much talent and we all know how to control our voices better, so it should be a good show,” he said.

Northwest Cabarrus sophomore Brittany Chery, 15, has been singing since she was 4. “I absolutely love it; I get to see the other singers and learn from them,” she said.

The chorus will perform “Hallelujah, Amen” by G.F. Handel, “Give Me Your Tired, Your Poor” by Irving Berlin, “Sing Praise to the Lord” by Sandra Ford, “Stopping By Woods On a Snowy Evening” by Randall Thompson, “A Celtic Blessing of Light” by Eleanor Daley and “True Light” by Keith Hampton.

Marty Price is a freelance writer: martyprice53@gmail.com

Want to go?

The Cabarrus High School All-County Chorus free performance will be held 4 p.m. Nov. 14 at Jay M. Robinson High School, 300 Pitts School Road S.W., Concord. www.cabarrus.k12.nc.us/Domain/42.

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