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Paynesville Press - March 16, 2005

PAHS hosts solo/ensemble contest

By Michael Jacobson

The Paynesville Area High School Choral Department hosted the vocal solo and ensemble contest on Monday, March 7, with over half of the PAHS entries earning the top or second highest ranking.

In all, there were 105 entries from five high schools, with 42 entries coming from PAHS. Twelve of PAHS's entries earned state superior ratings, the highest available, and 13 earned state excellent, the second highest available.

duo In addition, three of PAHS's entries were chosen as the "Best of Site" Winners. Each of the five judges not only rated around 20 entries, giving verbal and written comments to each singer, but they also picked one entry as their "Best of Site" Winner.

Junior Lindsey Pelton and senior Ashley Spanier earned Best of Site honors at the solo/ensemble vocal contest last week at PAHS.

Junior Lindsey Pelton tied for a "Best of Site" honor for her soprano solo "Ridente La Calma," an Italian song. Senior Ashley Spanier tied for a "Best of Site" honor, from a different judge, for her mezzosoprano solo "Star Vicino," another Italian piece.

The Treble Pops Choir - consisting of senior Val Callenius, junior Courtney Colbert, junior Amanda Halvorson, senior Stephanie Louis, junior Shonda Martinson, senior Katie Nelson, junior Kayla Nelson, Pelton, junior Lauren Vaske, and junior Lindsey Wyffels - was selected as the "Best of Site" Ensemble by a judge. They sang "The Rhodora," a contemporary song based on a Ralph Waldo Emerson poem about the rhododendron.

The Treble Pops Choir will sing "The Rhodora" at the choir concert on Tuesday, March 22, starting at 7 p.m.

The Treble Pops Choir is new this year at PAHS. Choir director Cheryl Bungum had so many female singers wishing to join the Pops Choir that she made a Mixed Pops Choir and a Treble Pops Choir. Each Pops Choir meets one day per week before school.

The Treble Pops Choir scored 38 for their performance at the contest, as did Spanier. Pelton scored 36, from a tough judge, said Bungum.

choir The Treble Pops Choir earned Best of Site ensemble honors at the vocal solo/ensemble contest last week. Pictured are junior Kayla Nelson, senior Val Callenius, senior Stephanie Louis, junior Amanda Halvorson, and junior Courtney Colbert. Also signing inthe group last week were junior Shonda Martinson, senior Katie Nelson, junior Lindsey Pelton, junior Lauren Vaske, and junior Lindsey Wyffels.

Other top scorers for PAHS, all earning state superior honors, were senior Katie Nelson (37), sophomore Jennifer Moburg (37), and ninth grader Katrina Daby (36). To earn a ranking of state superior, singers had to score 35.

The purpose of the choral contest is facing the challenge of singing a solo, in front of a judge, and learning from the comments and from the experience, according to Bungum. In looking back at Spanier's solos since ninth grade, her improvement was very evident, said Bungum.

Spanier agreed, saying earning "Best of Site" honors was a "great way to end my senior year."

Both Spanier and Pelton said they were surprised and pleased to have done so well at the choral contest.

All the students did a good job, said Bungum, and need to remember that improving their singing is the ultimate goal.

Bungum also thanked all her helpers in hosting the choral contest: score talliers Charlene Strand and Cheryl Colbert; student runners Dakota Block and Spanier; and accompanists Colbert, RaNae Martinson, Pelton, and Peder Thompson. Five schools participated in the choral concert - ACGC, BBE, EV-W, NL-S, and Paynesville - with Paynesville accounting for 42 of the 105 entries.

"Best of Site" Winners
Junior Lindsey Pelton, senior Ashley Spanier, and the Treble Pops Choir (senior Val Callenius, junior Courtney Colbert, junior Amanda Halvorson, senior Stephanie Louis, junior Shonda Martinson, senior Katie Nelson, junior Kayla Nelson, Pelton, junior Lauren Vaske, and junior Lindsey Wyffels)

State Superior Solos
Colbert, ninth grader Katrina Daby, sophomore Bryce Fischbach, Martinson, sophomore Jennifer Moburg, Katie Nelson, Pelton, Spanier, sophomore Peder Thompson, Vaske, and Wyffels

State Superior Ensembles
Treble Pops Choir

State Excellent Solos
Sophomore Ashley Atkinson, Callenius, ninth grader Crystal Cromwell, sophomore Megan Haase, senior Ashley Horner, sophomore Mary Keller, sophomore Kristin Lang, sophomore Emily Lindeman, sophomore Marissa Mackedanz, Kayla Nelson, and junior Jessica Sheets

State Superior Ensembles
Martinson and Spanier; Katie and Kayla Nelson

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