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MCHS Choirs Earn Clean Sweep at International Music Festival Competition


This news story was published on April 23, 2012.
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The Mason City High School Concert Choir earned a clean sweep of all trophies at the Chicago Worldstrides Heritage International Music Festival Competition. The students received a Gold Award for both the Concert Choir and Chamber Choir. Additionally, those ensembles earned the “Adjudicators Award” as the highest scoring choir in both of their categories. They also were recognized with the “Maestro Award” in two categories for outstanding soloists in Johannes Brahms “Zigeunerlieder” for the Chamber Choir and in Ben Allaway’s “Freedom Come” for the Concert Choir. The Chamber Choir was recognized with the “Outstanding Choral Program” trophy from a score of 99 and two perfect ratings of 100 given by a panel of three judges. This represents the highest score at an International competition by a choir from MCHS in school history. The MCHS Vocal Music Department was also named as the festival’s Grand Champion with the “Sweepstakes Award” that represents the highest overall average score of a music program in the competition.

The diverse panel of judges included renowned composer Paul Carey, professional opera singer Bruce Hall, and Dr. Benjamin Ayling, Director of Choral Activities at Ohio Northern University. Other participating schools in the International competition included Saint Thomas More from Hamilton Ontario; Senior Ecole Secondaire Mont Saint Sacrament from St. Gabriel Quebec; Valley Center High School from Valley Center Kansas; Hastings High School from Hastings Michigan, the Ladue Chamber Singers from St. Louis, Mo; Grace Christian Academy from Knoxville Tennessee; Park Hill High School from Kansas City Mo; and Richmond High School from Richmond Mo.

The MCHS Concert Choir also performed on the tour in clinic sessions with Dr. Lee Nelson at Wartburg College in Waverly and Professor Karen Brunssen at Northwestern University in Evanston, Il. The students saw the Broadway production “Hairspray,” the multicultural ensemble “Stomp,” and the show “Blue Man Group.” The 88 member ensemble also enjoyed a Renaissance evening at Medieval Times, visited The Hard Rock Cafe, and toured the Chicago Skydeck observatory formerly known as the Sears Tower. All of the students raised their own funds for the trip.

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2 Responses to MCHS Choirs Earn Clean Sweep at International Music Festival Competition

  1. 4ever49 Reply Report comment

    April 23, 2012 at 1:32 pm

    Great to see very positive news involving young people of Mason City.

    Kudos all around!!!

    • Watcher Reply Report comment

      April 23, 2012 at 2:49 pm

      I concur, I saw this earlier along with the little league article and was happy to read a couple positive nature articles.

      The NIT average seems approximately 5 negative, 4 neutral, to 1 positive story.