Strongsville High School, Hilliard Bradley High School and Gahanna Lincoln High School were invited to UA to participate in the annual Vocal-Choral Festival on Friday, Jan. 23.
Students of these schools’ choir and cantorum programs spent the day at UA from 8 a.m. until 3 p.m. Their schedule included attending multiple rehearsals, having lunch at Robertson Dining Hall and performing in the Student Union Ballroom.
Each high school had a chance to showcase their vocal talents with a diverse set of songs.
Grace Hargis, a Hilliard Bradley student, received an enthusiastic applause for her rendition of O del mio dolce ardor, written by Christoph Willibald von Gluck.
The participating high schools and UA’s Concert Choir collaborated to perform the final three songs. They were able to blend their sounds with one another even though they had just one day to prepare.
Dr. Ann Usher, director for the UA School of Music, said the importance of this invitational is for recruitment.
“It emphasizes that singing doesn’t stop after high school. That is the beauty of singing,” Usher said.
Usher also said that this invitational lets the high school students hear other choirs, sing in a massive choir and see what life is like at a college campus.
When asked about how it felt to perform with the different high schools, Jeff Boggs, a student in UA’s Concert Choir, said, “It was challenging to sing with someone you’ve never sung with before. It’s cool how we all came together.”
The schools that participate vary every year and only the ones with well-known programs are invited. Since its beginning in 2005, the program has grown from 40 participants to 229 participants.