Five students from Lincoln County High School and Ninth Grade Academy were recently selected as members of the Middle Tennessee Mid-State Choirs.
The students are ninth graders Kalista Holdmeyer and Carson Gay, sophomores Mason Buck and Landon Bradford and senior Nicholas Moose.
The students auditioned on Oct. 14 at Siegel High School in Murfreesboro. The audition consisted of performing a selected piece and sight reading.
The selected students gathered at Brentwood United Methodist Church on Nov. 13-14 where they rehearsed with the other selected students for nine hours. The choirs were conducted and rehearsed by guest clinicians from across the southeast and midwest.
The choirs performed a concert on Nov. 14 in front of packed crowds at Brentwood United Methodist Church.
“The students from Lincoln County had to compete with students from Middle Tennessee in which the majority of them started their choral singing experience in the sixth grade,” said Barry Petty, chorus teacher at LCHS. “With the exception of elementary music, the Lincoln County students do not have the opportunity to start choir until the ninth grade, thus giving other students in the state a three-year head start.
“Three of the Lincoln County students selected had only been in choir for three months and the other two students, a year and three months.
“I believe that if our students had the same opportunities as most of the choir students in Middle Tennessee, then we would enjoy even more student success in this event,” Petty said. “Dr. (Bill) Heath, superintendent of Lincoln County Schools, is aware of the situation and is looking at possible solutions for the future.”
Each of the students said the experience was one they won’t soon forget.
For Mason, meeting the directors who shared their expertise with the students was a great experience, while Landon, Nicholas and Carson agreed the experience boosted their self-confidence – “It was a great experience,” Mason said.
“I thought it might be a waste of my time,” Carson said, noting the confidence he gained by the experience. “I soon figured out it wasn’t … the experience was great.”
“We were told we had a really good work ethic,” Kalista added. “It was nice because everyone there was very serious. They all wanted to work and wanted to learn.”
“I have to give props to Mr. Petty,” Nicholas said. “I wasn’t too psyched about going. I wasn’t very confident. I’m glad he pushed me.”
“If it wasn’t for him, probably nobody here would know there was an all-state or mid-state choir,” Landon added, saying he appreciated Petty’s support for more opportunities for students.