- The Enterprise
- The Recorder
Among the more than 150 high and middle school students from around Maryland participating in the 2013 All State Junior Chorus this month, 30 of them were from Calvert County schools.
The event, which was held March 8 through 10 at South Hagerstown High School in Hagerstown, displayed the singing talents of the selected ninth, eighth and seventh grade students under the direction of Lynnel Joy Jenkins of Princeton, N.J., according to the event program.
Plum Point Middle School had nine students participating at this years event, according to Plum Point Middle chorus teacher Lori Pellock.
“We have set the record four or five times for the highest number of students,” Pellock said.
Other schools that were represented from the county include Calvert Middle, Huntingtown High, Mill Creek, Northern High, Northern Middle, Patuxent High, Southern Middle and Windy Hill Middle, according to the program.
Students at Plum Point Middle begin the selection process in the previous August with practice at 7 a.m., Pellock said.
“They go to a rigorous audition in Annapolis,” she said.
The four-part audition in November included several examples of music in English and other languages.
After the students were selected, they were given seven songs to work on, Pellock said. The songs can be in any number of languages, and songs sung by students were in Hebrew and Swahili this year.
Once the students are accepted into the program, they still have to work very hard, Pellock said.
“They have to audition in Hagerstown when they get there [days before the performance],” she said.
The conductor is also picked from a rigorous application process, Pellock said.
While the process was strenuous, students who have been accepted to the chorus in the past have a better chance of getting a spot in the future, according to Pellock.
“I was very, very pleased,” she said about the Plum Point Middle student acceptance rate and performance.
Students and their parents agreed the concert was a positive experience.
“They will remember the friends they made and the fun they had, through all of the hard work of rehearsals,” said Rosemary Keffler, whose two children — Huntingtown High student Michael Keffler, 14, and Plum Point Middle student Julia Keffler, 13 — participated in concert.