Choir takes audience abroad with concert, performs foreign songs


Aubrey Kate Merrell

Thomas Ardrey leads chamber choir during concert on Oct. 17.

Grace Logan, Staff Writer

OHS Choir took their audience around the world with the first concert of the school year this past Tuesday. The choir, lead by teacher Thomas Ardrey, performed songs from Africa, Europe, the Caribbean and more.

“I chose [the theme] because I think it is important to expose our students to a bunch of different cultures and music of different cultures and what not,” Ardrey said.

According to Ardrey, not only did the choir have to learn the new pitches and rhythms but also the language and pronunciations.

“We’d been practicing for the concert since school started. Rehearsals became much more studious and vigorous closer to the concert,” sophomore chamber choir member Prowell Smith said. “We finished what needed to be finished, and I am super proud of what we’ve accomplished in such a short time.”

According to senior Aleah Parks, the preparation took longer than expected.

“It was actually rescheduled so we had more time than was planned,” Parks said.

The nine songs chosen by Ardrey were selected to fit the choir’s strong points along with expanding the student’s variety of music.

“I tried to get a good geographical representation, so a couple things [from] the Africa continent, a couple things from Eastern Europe [and] South America,” Ardrey said. “Four out of the nine songs were things that I had known for a long time and wanted to perform for a long time.”

Smith, who has been in OHS choir for two years, was very impressed with the choir’s first concert of the year.

“I was very pleased with the concert. Everyone did exceptionally well,” Smith said. “My favorite part of the concert was the men’s chorus. I just felt proud of the boys.”

Along with Smith, junior and fellow chamber choir member Lauren Sink believes this year is going to be one of their best yet.

“There are so many talented people in my class, and I know in others. Mr. Audrey does such a great job teaching us,” Sink said. “I am thrilled to see what the rest of the year brings. There is so much potential.”

According to Ardrey, he enjoyed this concert because he was able to introduce the audience and choir groups to many new types of music.

“Everything is different. You know, going from music from Venezuela to Kenya to Germany to England to the Caribbean, there’s a lot of contrast,” Ardrey said. “I thought everyone did an incredible job. I think it was the best concert we had.”

The next concert will take place on Dec. 11 around the holiday season, and will be similar to this past concert.

“The plan is to do music around the world, but it explores different holiday traditions around the world not just our Christmas,” Ardrey said.