Registration is open at www.mcmastersingers.org for all young singers in grades 4-12. Rehearsals will begin on Monday 9/17 for four distinct Mastersingers Youth (MY) choirs: Boys’ Choir, Girls’ Choir, Young Men’s Choir, and Young Women’s Choir. The expansion into multiple youth choir groups was inspired by the success that Directors JoLyn Glenn and Kurtis McFadden have seen in four years leading the Mid-Columbia Boys’ Choir. Many singers in this group have begun to develop their adult voices, dropping many voices from sopranos to tenors and even basses in a short time period. The Young Men’s Choir will provide a platform for the Directors to help develop these changing voices and focus on the unique needs of this group. The expansion also includes the introduction of a long-sought-after Girls’ Choir, providing the same extracurricular choral opportunities for girls and young women that boys have been enjoying for these last four years.
Participants will have the opportunity to perform in a wide array of venues, sing a variety of musical styles, and share the stage often with the seasoned musicians of the Mid-Columbia Mastersingers adult choirs as well as other local groups like the Mid-Columbia Symphony and Mid-Columbia Ballet. Students who sing in choir outperform non-arts peers on the SATs and show a 20 percent increase in test scores in both language and math. By singing in choir, students learn to analyze problems, and to solve them in collaboration with colleagues to achieve a common goal.
Mastersingers Youth Directors JoLyn Glenn and Kurtis McFadden are both choir teachers for Pasco School District, at Chiawana High School and McLoughlin Middle School respectively. Glenn will lead the Young Women’s Choir for girls in grades 8-12, while McFadden leads the Young Men’s Choir for boys in grades 7-12 whose voices have begun to change. Two newly hired Associate Conductors will lead the younger groups; Scott Wagnon, choir teacher at Kamiakan High School, will take over the Boys’ Choir, and the Girls’ Choir will be led by community choir director Marianne Larsen.
The 2018-19 choir season will consist of two 4-month sessions: Sept-Jan and Feb-May. Mastersingers Youth (MY) Choirs is committed to accessibility, and offers an established, need-based financial aid program to ensure than any child who wants to sing in a MY Choir has the opportunity to do so.