February 7-9 was a weekend to remember for 2013 Colorado All-State Choir participants. The All-State Choir event was held at the Denver Convention Center, culminating in a performance of all three choirs, Women’s, Men’s and Mixed, at BellcoTheatre on Sunday. The concert was excellent, from start to finish, displaying the talents of more than 500 high school choral singers from around the state, each performer a tribute to their director.
Colorado All-State Choir has been in existence for over fifty years. For any high school choral singer in their junior and senior years, it is the “super bowl” of achievements. The audition is challenging and the competition stiff. For 2012-13, nearly 1,800 students auditioned; only 525 were on the final roster.
Once accepted, each member is responsible for learning and memorizing music; in fact, they are tested for their knowledge when they arrive at the first rehearsal. They then rehearse and perform under the baton of a nationally known conductor, usually currently teaching at the college level. This year’s guest conductors were Dr. Daniel Bara, Director of Choral Activities and Professor of Music at the Hugh Hodgson School of Music at the University of Georgia; Dr. Christopher Aspaas, Associate Professor of Choral/Vocal Music at St. Olaf College; and Dr. Pearl Shangkuan, professor of Music at Calvin College and chorusmaster of the Grand Rapids Symphony.
The Colorado Children’s Chorale is very proud to have many alumni accepted into All-State Choir every year, and this year was no exception. There were 19 alumni Chorale alumni in the ranks and four Chorale alumni choral directors who prepared students for this prestigious honor.
When asked about the experience, Erin Reynolds summed it up best, “All State Honor Choir was outstanding for me. Being with a group of such talented and dedicated singers is amazing. The sound that we all produce is fantastic. Everyone knows their part, and the conductors are fun to work with. The rehearsals are worth it, and they help you grow as a singer. All State was a magnificent experience.”
All-State Women’s Choir
Jamie Bredahl, Legend
Erin Reynolds, Denver School of the Arts
Tulley Shofner, Denver East
Julia Wirth, Denver School of the Arts
All-State Men’s Choir
Timothy Baird, Denver School of the Arts
Ari Kononov, Cherry Creek High School
Samuel Makikalli, Rock Canyon High School
Zach Nelson, Chatfield High School
Ben Pilcher, Pomona High School
Logan Schafer, Rock Canyon High School
Benjamin Tooke, Cherry Creek High School
All State Mixed Choir
Mackenzie Cohen, Cherry Creek High School
Derek Driggs, Lakewood High School
Anna Griggs, Cherokee Trail High School
Marissa Howard, Denver School of the Arts
Slide Kelly, Colorado Academy
Becca Long, Green Mountain High School
Madison Shoemaker, Cherry Creek High School
Hannah York, Overland High School
Music Educators/Choral Directors
Garlyn (Saddler) Bello, Englewood High School
Janay (Hagen) Bird, Erie High School
Teresa (Argotsinger) Newman, Liberty High School
Stephen Ross, Skyline High School
Many of the Chorale members mentioned above are also performing in their high school’s spring musicals. For a list of Chorale alumni performing this spring, click here. Support your local high school and Chorale alumni at the same time!