Choirs Share Sounds of the Season

Junior High Choirs Share Sounds of the Season
Posted on 12/20/2019
This is the image for the news article titled Junior High Choirs Share Sounds of the Seasonchoir collage from junior highs

The sounds of the season can be heard throughout our community, thanks, in part, to Lakota’s four junior school choirs.

While all four programs perform holiday concerts at their schools, the choir directors all agree that it is important to give back to the community. One way they accomplish this is by performing at community events and nursing homes, as well as caroling at Lakota’s early childhood and elementary schools.

Hopewell Junior School choir teacher
Jennifer Akers knows there are many benefits to community performances. “First, it’s a concrete way to build relationships with our residents (who) help support music education and performing arts in our Lakota schools,” she said. “I also believe it’s valuable for our community members to see the great work our talented student musicians are doing and how their tax dollars are being put to good use furthering our students’ music education. And, it’s also important for our students to witness how valuable it is to volunteer their time and skills within their community.”

And it’s not just the teachers who feel this way.
Sophie Subit, a seventh-grader at Ridge Junior School said, “I choose to perform in the community because singing for people makes me happy, and the fulfilling feeling of knowing that you have entertained someone is amazing. I like the idea of sharing talents with the community, so we can all enjoy what everyone has to offer.”

Both Hopewell and Liberty junior schools kicked off the holiday season at West Chester’s annual Christmas Walk. Ridge students entertained members of the West Chester/Liberty Chamber Alliance at its monthly luncheon. “I am very proud of the community service our Lakota Ridge Choir department does during the school year, especially during December,” said Ridge choir teacher
Jennifer Dietsch.  

A favorite part of December involves a trip down memory lane for most of the singers as they visit their elementary and early childhood schools. An added bonus is the opportunity to give younger students a taste of the opportunities they will have when they reach seventh grade. “My students love getting the chance to serve as role models for the little ones,” said Plains teacher
Abbie Miller. “They love sharing their talents and interacting with the younger students.”

In addition to touring the community, each choir also performs an in-school holiday concert for their fellow students. At Liberty Junior, the choir used more than just their voices as instruments. “These performances included choir chimes (a bell choir) and a violin/guitar/ukulele rendition of
Silent Night,” said teacher Nicole Fink. “The eighth grade performance will also include a joint number between the choir and band.”

Akers plans to continue performing at community events - both around the holidays and beyond. “Vocal music combines two art forms - poetry and music - in a way no other art form does.  Because of this, live performances evoke emotions and a shared experience between the performers and audience in a moment in time that no other activity on this planet can,” she said. “I am so thankful we have the opportunity to bring our community together by singing, especially during the holidays.”