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Elementary Honors Choir Updates

The Michigan Music Education Association presented the 2nd annual Elementary Honors Choir over two Saturdays in March of 2016 at Dewitt High School. The Elementary Hon- ors Choir committee heard just over 200 audition recordings from 3rd-6th grade Michigan students in November.


year MMEA members had three convenient ways to submit recordings of their talented singers; e-mail, snail mail and a new Google Voice option. Of these auditions, 157 singers were selected to participate in the Honors Choir event.

During the event, students were treated to a fun and rigorous series of rehearsals that kept them engaged, on their toes, and making beautiful music together. At the conclusion of the first Saturday’s rehearsals, students were invited to cre- ate art, poetry, or personal reflections for each of the songs in the repertoire. A wonderful display was created in the lobby of the Dewitt High School auditorium for the audience as they arrived, as well as examples being shared for discussion during rehearsals.

The Honors Choir students proudly performed in front of a full auditorium of family and friends on Saturday, March 19th. The MMEA Elementary Honors Choir was supported and partially funded by a grant from the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs (MCACA) and the National En- dowment for the Arts (NEA). We would also like to thank all the parents, teachers, volunteers & staff that made this event possible: James & Ashley Cumings, Denise Wilkinson, Lisa Ebener, Lisa DuPrey & Brooke Broughton, JW Pepper & Son, Inc., Parents, family, friends & teachers, Rehearsal & Performance Parent Helpers, Members of the Adult Choir & the Dewitt Community Schools.

This year’s directors were the dynamic team of James and Ashley Cumings, who currently serve as the Northwest Kidder Middle School Choir Director and Accompanist for Northwest Community Schools in Jackson Michigan. Mr. Cumings selected a varied repertoire that was fun, approach- able, and yet challenging for an honors choir, including: • The Path to the Moon (words by Madeline C. Thomas, mu- sic by Eric H. Thiman)

• Cantate Domino (Nancy Cobb Hill) • Old Carrion Crow (arr. Mary Goetze) • Thula Klizeo (words & music by Joseph Shabalala, arr. Leanne MacDonnell) • There Has to Be a Song (music by Andrea Ramsey)

Auditions for the 2017 MMEA Elementary Honors Choir will be held in the fall of 2017.

Audition requirements,

schedule and all other information will be posted on our website ( AND emailed to teach- ers and parents in the fall. We invite all 2016 participants to audition for next year’s ensemble. Do you have a suggestion or concern? Please feel free to contact Cory Micheel-Mays (Executive Director) at: OR (517) 748-6518.


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