For this year’s NCS-St. Albans Chorale and Orchestra spring break trip, 75 student musicians traveled south to Atlanta, Ga. The group attended a performance by the Atlanta Master Chorale, served as guest choir for Sunday Eucharist at the Cathedral of St. Phillip, sang for students at Woodward Academy, participated in a choral clinic at Emory University, and attended rehearsals at the University of Georgia. In addition to participating in musical activities, the group visited the National Center for Civil and Human Rights, the Fox Theater, the King Center, and the CNN World Headquarters, and enjoyed several group meals, including one at the Atlanta favorite Mary Mac’s Tea Room.
“The trip gave us an opportunity to bond as a Chorale and make new friends, especially younger members we may not have encountered much yet,” says Matthew Sheets ’19, co-president of the Chorale. This was the third trip for Fellow co-president, Isabel Steinberg ’19, on her third spring break trip, said “the Chorale Trip is my favorite way to experience a new city because I get to see it through the lens of something I love—singing!” Luke Mott ’19, co-president of the Madrigal Singers, enjoyed the sight-seeing related to the civil rights movement. “I loved learning more about Martin Luther King Jr. and his hometown through our visits to the National Center for Civil and Human Rights, the King Center, and Ebenezer Baptist Church.”
The time in Atlanta provided exposure to the rehearsal process and opportunities for collegiate singing—a slight departure from the two previous years’ trips to England and New York-Philadelphia, which were more performance-based. “The clinic with Eric Nelson at Emory University was especially informative,” said Sareen Balian ’19 (NCS), co-president of the Madrigal Singers, “and the Chorale gained some insight into not only mastering the music we’re singing but also approaching our own singing in Chorale rehearsals.”
This year’s trip, organized and led by Director of Choral Music Brandon Straub, included a team of eight faculty and staff chaperones from NCS and St. Albans. We extend thanks to Scott Wood, Christen Hernandez, Chuck Bowers, Michael Hansen, Whitney Kelly, Megan Prichard, Natasha Crawford, and Lily Rowny for joining us.