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Parent meeting set Tuesday for new girls choir

Special to The PREVIEW

Parents of girls interested in singing with the new Pagosa Springs Girls Choir are invited to attend an orientation meeting on Tuesday, April 23, at 5 p.m. at St. Patrick’s Episcopal Church. Parents will have the opportunity to meet the choir’s director, Linda Parker, and accompanist Sally Neel, and learn about the opportunities the choristers will enjoy through this new community girls’ choir.

Singers will be selected through audition and must be in fifth through eighth grades in the 2013-2014 school year. Auditions will be held on Friday, May 3, from 4-6 p.m. and Saturday, May 4, from 9 a.m.-noon in the Pagosa Springs Middle School band room. The girls will be required to be able to match pitch and imitate musical patterns. A music education background will be helpful, but not required. Rehearsals will commence at the beginning of the new school year on Monday afternoons from 4-5 p.m.

The tuition fee for PSGC will be $200 per year for each girl. There will also be a $10 audition fee. If the student is selected for the choir and accepts membership, the $10 will be credited toward the tuition cost. The audition fee will be refunded if the singer is not selected or does not choose to join. A payment plan for the tuition will be offered and scholarships will also be available. Fund-raising opportunities will also be offered to help cover costs.

“No qualified child will be turned away due to an inability to pay,” said Parker. “If there is a need for financial assistance, we will help the family find it.”

The Pagosa Springs Girls Choir will learn to perform high quality choral music in a variety of styles, including pop, folk, and country, and some music will include choreography and props. The girls will also be provided opportunities to participate in trips to places including the Santa Fe Opera and Popejoy Hall in Albuquerque.

Director Linda Parker is new to Pagosa Springs, but certainly not new to music education. She brings with her an extensive and highly recognized background teaching music in public schools at all grade levels in Texas and New Mexico. Her recent retirement from teaching was no indication that she was ready to turn in her music scores and relax. Upon her arrival in Pagosa Springs, she realized that there was a need for additional musical opportunities for children and she quickly set about determining the best way to offer her skills to that end.

“This choir is a starting place,” said Parker. “Girls at this age are beginning to develop their singing voices and are ready to take their skills to a higher level. At this point many have received a basic level of music training in public school or through private training and are ready to apply their skills in an ensemble setting. The Pagosa Springs Girls Choir will offer these girls a chance to learn to sing in harmony with other singers as well as enjoy the disciplined attention to detail required in a first-class choral ensemble. It will also provide a fun way to interact with other girls with rewarding goals in mind.”

To find out more about this new music ensemble, plan to attend the parent orientation meeting at St. Patrick’s Episcopal Church on Tuesday, April 23, at 5 p.m. The church is located at 225 S. Pagosa Blvd. Or, you can call Parker at 264-1434, or visit the PSGC website at www.singpagosa.org.

This story was posted on April 18, 2013.