My first blog!
The Michael O’Neal Singers just began its Twentieth Season in what I think was exactly the right way. Instead of concentrating on what we have accomplished during these last two decades, we set our eyes on what is ahead. In a concert entitled Celebrate the Future we featured three outstanding high school musical ensembles: The Alpharetta High School Chorale, Thomas Yackley, Conductor; The Milton High School Chorale, J. Andrew Bowers, Conductor; and the Centennial High School Chamber Strings, Young Kim, Conductor. Each ensemble performed individually, as well as in a combined performance with MOS of Schubert’s Mass in G and a World Premier performance of Hear the Future!
What struck me most about these young people, in addition to their extraordinary musicianship, was their commitment and seriousness of purpose. In this complicated world in which we live it is encouraging to observe teenagers such as these and realize that they will be our leaders of tomorrow. I have always believed (of course I’ll admit I’m somewhat biased) that school musical ensembles attract some of our brightest and best students, but I also believe that involvement in such ensembles helps develop qualities of teamwork, goal setting, and leadership. It is gratifying to see folks (of any age) working together for a positive common purpose, and a musical ensemble is one of the best vehicles to achieve something together that could never be accomplished individually.
At our Celebrate the Future concert we had musicians ranging in age from teenagers to retirees and I imagine we all received something from our musical collaboration. I’m interested in hearing from you as to what you experienced in our performance together and also what it is you most enjoy about making music in an ensemble. Share your thoughts!