BU choirs set for busy year

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choir:Senior Christina Cowart and junior Scott Ireland converse Monday in Owens Musical Arts Building before the concert and chamber choirs went to perform at Olathe District Schools? Masterworks Concert at Olathe Northwest High School.:Rachel Dannen

The Baker University choirs are working hard to kick off the beginning of the year with busy schedules in sight.

Director of Choral Activities Matthew Potterton said last year was a building year and this year's choirs are off to a good start with large numbers. The concert choir is made up of 59 students, 70 students are in the community choir and 15 students are in chamber choir.

"The group has improved from last year … we're able to advance quicker and at a higher level this year, so that's just been a blast," Potterton said.

A concert choir retreat will take place Friday and Saturday in Owens Musical Arts Building to help the members of the group grow closer and more comfortable with one another while spending time working on songs for their upcoming events.

"We're going to order pizza and then anybody that wants to is going to go over and support the theater show that's coming on," sophomore Morgan James said.

James thinks the choir retreats are good for the group because it helps people to not be as nervous around one another.

The concert choir is also planning to host a spaghetti dinner Nov. 13 to raise money for the group. At the spaghetti dinner, students from the choir will entertain those who come by singing. Tryouts will take place next week for a few special performances during the dinner.

"There's also a silent auction and all of the money that comes from that will go into a choir account, which goes for music and it will be used for our trips and stuff," sophomore Paul Eltschinger said.

Eltschinger said some of the choir members performed in California last year to get Baker's name out. Potterton said he is looking to have the group travel to Minnesota to spread the word about Baker's choir there.

The chamber choir will have its own concert Nov. 2, which is something new this year.

"That's our elite, top group and they've been working really hard on very difficult literature, and so that concert is going to be fantastic," Potterton said.

At the choir concert, at 7:30 p.m. Oct. 29 at Baldwin First United Methodist Church, the chamber choir and the community choir will both sing.

Potterton's wife, Amy, will lead the children's choir and the Baldwin High School Choir will perform as well.

Senior Karenah Spencer, who is in the community choir, said she likes being a part of the large group.

"It makes it sound fuller," Spencer said. "The songs for this year are really cool."

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