The Chandler Children’s Choir is presenting its spring concert, “Dancing Around the World,” a collection of songs representing different nationalities and cultures in different languages.
The choir is a nonprofit organization that began in 2008. There are three choirs: the junior choir made up of 7 to 10 year olds, the intermediate choir with 10 to 12 year olds, and the cantus choir made up of 12 to 14 year olds.
Director Aimee Stewart says choir is a much better way for children to learn how to sing than individual lessons.
“The things that (the children) need to learn is how to have pitch, how to have a great tone, how to extend a range from low notes to high notes and how to read music,” she said. “And those are the very basic elements of learning to sing and those are the things that you can learn best in a choir.”
Stewart also says the music selection for a children’s choir is greater than for an individual child singer.
“There is just a wealth of music for young choirs and it exposes them to all kinds of artistic music, the masters Brahms and Haydn and Handel, they all have written music for children so we get to explore that as a choir rather than individual singing,” she said.
The idea for “Dancing Around the World” came after the director of the Eastern Arts Academy asked the choir to perform a song in Chinese at its Chinese New Year Festival, Stewart said, and the idea grew from there.
“I started looking at all this wonderful world of music and a theme came together,” she said.
The choir will be performing songs in German, Italian, Hebrew, Hungarian, Chinese and Russian, as well as songs from England, Ireland, Africa, Tahiti, the Philippines and Wales.
“We talk about all the different places that we’re singing from and it opens their eyes,” Stewart said.
The concert will feature three instrumentalists on percussion, flute and violin, as well as four dancers from the Adrenaline Dance Arts to accompany on some songs.
“We have four women who are coming to dance in our concert because I think that beautifully expresses the international side of it, because music and dance don’t have any barriers, there’s no language barriers,” Stewart said.
Elle Campbell, a 9-year-old student at Kyrene de los Cerritos Elementary School and a member of the choir, agrees with the Stewart.
“I think that music speaks to everyone,” she said.
And the hardest language to pronounce?
“Dancing Around the World,” Chandler Children’s Choir spring concert, is on Saturday, May 11 at 7 p.m. at the Chandler Center for the Arts, 250 N. Arizona Ave. Tickets are $12-$25. For more information, visit chandlerchildrenschoir.org.
The Chandler Children’s Choir will be having auditions for new members May 17-18. For more information, call (480) 699 9846 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
• Brittany Stehmer is a senior at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University. She is interning this semester for the AFN.