By Patti Vyzralek
Special to The PREVIEW
A unique opportunity for girls who love to sing and want to further their music education is once again being offered by the Pagosa Springs Girls Choir.
This community choir of girls is open to young ladies who will be in grades five through eight during the 2015-2016 school year, whether they are enrolled in public school, are home-schooled or are in online educational programs. Members are selected through an audition process.
Auditions for the choir will be held in the Pagosa Springs Middle School band room on Friday, May 8, from 4 to 6 p.m. and Saturday, May 9, from 9 a.m. to noon.
“Specific audition times are not assigned,” Linda Parker, director of the Pagosa Springs Girls Choir, said. “Instead, those interested in auditioning should come to the band room during the scheduled audition times.”
She added that those planning to audition will need to obtain audition packets. Packets for girls who are currently fourth-graders were sent home through the elementary school. For girls in grades five through seven, packets are available at the Pagosa Springs Middle School administrative office. Any girls who are home-schooled can obtain audition packets by calling Parker at 264-1434. A packet is also available on the Pagosa Springs Girls Choir Facebook page.
“There is an audition form in the packet that will be collected — along with a $10 audition fee — at the time of the audition,” Parker said. “The $10 audition fee will be applied to the required $200 annual tuition if the audition participant ultimately is chosen for membership in the choir.”
Parker explained that also in the packet is a scholarship application. Scholarships are available to help pay tuition costs, as are payment plans to help with individual financial situations throughout the year.
“No girl will be excluded because of financial reasons,” Parker said.
To help girls prepare for the auditions for the 2015-2016 season, two coaching classes will be held, on Tuesday, May 5, and Wednesday, May 6. Both classes will be held at 7 p.m. in the Pagosa Springs Middle School band room. The cost for each coaching class is $5. The classes will be led by Parker and are designed to assist the girls with vocal techniques and to help them become familiar with the music for the audition. While the girls may attend either of the classes, Parker recommends that those planning to audition attend both classes so that they will be prepared and can do their best during the audition.
“While the auditions are meant to be nonthreatening, most everyone experiences some nervousness when auditioning,” Parker said. “The classes will help the girls know exactly what is expected during their audition and give them confidence during the process.”
She said that any girl planning to audition should prepare to sing the song “America” (“My Country ‘tis of Thee”) by memory without accompaniment. Pitch-matching and echo-clapping will also be part of the audition, but no preparation is necessary for that part of the audition.
“Being part of the Pagosa Springs Girls Choir is a wonderful opportunity for girls to learn about vocal and choral techniques and to perform in a select choral group. Members learn and perform high-quality choral music in a variety of styles, including pop, folk and country. Some of the music training for choir members also includes choreography and props,” Parker said. “In addition, members are provided opportunities to participate in summer educational trips. In the summer of 2014, the choir traveled to Santa Fe, N.M., to learn about opera and art, and this summer in June, the choir will spend eight days in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area learning about professional musical theater and the history and art of the region.”
Those accepted into the choir will be expected to attend rehearsals held weekly on Mondays from 4 to 5 p.m. in the Pagosa Springs Middle School band room beginning the first Monday after the new school year starts. For additional information, call 264-1434 or email email@example.com.