EVANSTON – The Evanston High School Choir traveled to San Diego March 28-31 to perform at the San Diego Heritage Music Festival, where the group received a Silver Note for Class 2A Concert Choir.
EHS director of vocal music Heather Blackwell said the trip gave the students the opportunity to perform at a nationally-quality festival, with schools across the western United States. “Our students performed at the same level as most of the top California schools,” said Blackwell, “and I’m proud of the way our EHS students have portrayed themselves.”
In addition to the silver note, the EHS choir received the prestigious Spirit of San Diego award, which recognizes one school among all those who have performed at the festival that demonstrates good citizenship, sportsmanship and attitudes. positive. Blackwell said staff were impressed with the way the Evanston students presented themselves both on and off the stage.
Four Evanston students received the Maestro Award for their outstanding solo performances with the Choir, including Marquel Hawkins, Aidan McGuire, Linzy Sharp and Gracie Walk. The four were featured soloists on “In Dat Great Gittin ‘Up Mornin”, an African-American spiritual selection.
The students performed three other selections at the festival, including traditional Hebrew “Ose Shalom”, a traditional camp reunion song called “No Time” and “Have I Told You Lately” by Van Morrison.
Blackwell said there were heritage music festivals held in various locations across the country, including Seattle, San Francisco, Atlanta, New Orleans, New York, Chicago and Washington, DC She chose to visit San Diego to give students a profitable opportunity to play at the national level.
“I wanted to challenge our students with a higher level performance opportunity and bring renewed energy to the vocal music program at EHS. Our vocal jazz choirs have performed at top jazz festivals for years, and now our advanced concert choir students enjoy a similar experience, ”said Blackwell.
In addition to performing, the group was also able to visit many area attractions including Sea World, USS Midway, Old Town, Seaport Village, Belmont Park and Balboa Park. The students have raised money for the trip through several different fundraisers since the start of the school year.
In addition to recognized soloists Hawkins, McGuire, Sharp and Walk, other members of the EHS choir are Anamaria Aponte-Malpica, Jonathan Baxter, Gage Beachler, McKye Carver, Alexis Chandler, Rosa Echevarria, Shyann Gottfried, Casedi Jensen, Sky Jensen, Lily Johnson, Sophie Kallas, Araka Lebaron, Skyler LeMarr, Kirsten Maisey, Karen Medrano Mora, Riley Ovard, Madison Sepos, Cloie Shupe, George Stephen and Monica Voss.