04/01/09 — WCPS All County Choral Festival performance scheduled

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WCPS All County Choral Festival performance scheduled

By Phyllis Moore
Published in News on April 1, 2009 1:46 PM

Thirty public schools will be represented in this year's All County Choral Festival, planned for April 9 at 7 p.m. at Dillard Middle School.

The concert will showcase more than 250 students chosen by their choral directors to participate.

Officials said the festival will be divided into three segments -- elementary, middle and high school students -- with each group directed by a guest professional.

Choral teachers prepare students for the annual event. Then each group director spends the bulk of a day training the students for the performance.

"We look forward to the choral festival each year," said Dr. Steven Taylor, schools superintendent. "Our schools have some very talented students. It is always a pleasure for the hundreds of family members, staff and community members who come out to hear these singers take the stage."

Dr. Ralph Smith, performing arts coordinator for the district, will serve as master of ceremonies for the evening. Among the musical selections this year will be "O Desayo," "America the Beautiful" and "Invictus."

The three directors this year come with an array of credentials.

Paul Flowers, elementary school clinician, is choral music and general music teacher at Hope Middle School in Greenville. In his 10th season as director of the Greenville Choral Society Children's Chorus and founding director of the GCS Bella Voce Singers, his choirs have received numerous honors and participated in concerts at Carnegie Hall in New York City.

Sonja McLean Williams, middle school clinician, travels the state as an adjudicator for large choral festivals and solo/small ensemble contests. A native of Jacksonville, she has taught music at the elementary and middle school levels and previously performed with the Opera Ensemble of New York.

Dr. Gregg Cannady, high school clinician, has 23 years of choral experience in public schools, universities and churches. He has directed choirs in Colorado, Wyoming and Oregon and toured internationally.

The concert is free and open to the public.