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Choir wins Sweepstakes at UIL competition

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Choir wins Sweepstakes at UIL competition

Photo Courtesy of Mr. Carson

Photo Courtesy of Mr. Carson

Photo Courtesy of Mr. Carson

Chandler Goldreyer, Staff Writer

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On April 16 and 18, the Varsity Women’s Ensemble and the Varsity Mixed Choir competed in UIL for concert performance and sight-reading.

The competition consisted of two sections: concert performance and sight reading. In concert performance, the choir performed 3 pieces and the three judges are given the sheet music. In sight-reading, the choir was given a copy of sheet music that they have never seen before. The choir practices chanting the solfège in their vocal sections until the timer runs out. Then, the choir performs the piece while singing the solfège, goes over their mistakes until the timer runs out again, and sight-reads the piece again. There are also three judges in this part of competition.

In both parts of competition, the judges listen and judge the performance based on its accuracy to the sheet music, vowels, consonants, tone, blending, and other techniques and qualities that make a choral piece sound good. Each judge will write down their comments and give the performance a grade of 1-5 based on a set of criteria. The grades are titled as followed: Superior (Division I), Excellent (Division II), Average (Division III), Below Average (Division IV), and Poor (Division V). When a choir gets 1’s from all three judges in concert and all three judges in sight-reading, it’s called a Sweepstakes.

Varsity Women’s Ensemble made sweepstakes for the third year in a row, and Varsity Mixed made sweepstakes for the 5th year in a row. This year, no other choirs in LCISD made sweepstakes.

“It’s been a very difficult year, with the flooding and stuff,” choir director Mr. Carson said. “The students went above and beyond with after school rehearsals and practicing around other commitments, and they really wanted this. I’m really proud of the work they’ve done.”

Mr. Carson, who has been at Foster for 5 years, explained how things have changed while he’s been here to help our choir be successful.

“I think people trust me now, and everybody’s bought in and agrees with what we’re doing,” Mr. Carson said. “I’m doing the same things they do in Katy and Fort Bend ISD schools, being sequential. I think everybody’s bought in, they see how important it is to do good literature and have a great time doing it.”

He also wanted to add a message about choir to Foster students.

“Students think that you have to sing to be able to get into choir,” Mr. Carson said. “I want everybody to know that you don’t have to be a great singer to be in choir. I mean, a lot of the people here don’t sing in church choirs or musical theatre, but come to choir and they learn to sing and they enjoy it. I wish more students at Foster would understand the importance of  choral music, and not just musical theatre or pop music. I wish they’d give choir a chance, because there’s a lot to learn. It’s a great genre of music, and so I wish people would get it out of their head and come try and experience it more.”

Varsity and Non-Varsity choirs will be performing at showcase on May 18 to sing and dance.

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Chandler Goldreyer, Staffer

My name is Chandler Goldreyer and I’m a staff writer for the Foster Flyer. I’m a senior and I’m an active member of the Foster High School Choir....

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Choir wins Sweepstakes at UIL competition