All-State Choir taps 3 Cassville vocalists

Wednesday, November 19, 2014
Centerstage, a Cassville High School show choir, practices the show, "Second Chances." The group includes three singers who made the All-State Honor Choir. Jason Johnston reporter@cassville-democrat.com

41 local singers make All-District choir

A Cassville High School senior made the All-State Honor Choir for the second straight year, while two seniors were named first alternates.

Levi Pollreisz, who sings tenor, said he was surprised to make the state choir last year.

No Boys Allowed, a Cassville High School all-female show choir, practices the show, "Communication." NBA performs Saturday at the Stars Over Seneca Show Choir Competition. Jason Johnston reporter@cassville-democrat.com

"This year, it was kind of expected," Pollreisz said. "So, I felt there was a little more pressure, but I sing how I sing. I just got it."

Kristen Cox and Parker Skinner are first alternates in the alto and bass sections, respectively.

"I was really hoping to get into it outright, because I was first alternate last year as well," Skinner said.

Levi Pollreisz, left, a Cassville High School senior, makes the Missouri All-State Honor Choir for the second straight year as a tenor. Seniors Kristen Cox, center, and Parker Skinner are first alternates in the alto and bass sections, respectively. Skinner also made first alternate last year. The 2015 choir performs Jan. 31 at Tan-Tar-A resort in Osage Beach. Jason Johnston reporter@cassville-democrat.com

Cox said she did not think she was prepared enough.

"It's a big shock," she said.

The Southwest Missouri All-District Honor Choir, which included 41 Cassville students, performed at Missouri Southern State University in Joplin on Oct. 24. Freshmen and sophomores have their own district choir. Juniors and seniors, from the other district choir, also found out if they made the state choir.

Centerstage, a Cassville High School show choir, practices the show, "Second Chances." The group, which performs Saturday at the Stars Over Seneca Show Choir Competition, has 40 singing members and four band members. Jason Johnston reporter@cassville-democrat.com

"At the very end of the concert, they will announce the four top sopranos, the four top altos, the four top tenors and the four top basses," said Mary Richmiller, who has taught vocal music at Cassville High School for 22 years.

The district and state auditions combine into one total score, Pollreisz said.

At the first part of the audition for district, students sing two minutes of a classical solo, and they then have to sight read music. Between 300-400 students tried out for the state choir. Each eligible student had to sing their vocal part on "Exultate Justi." The Latin piece has real extremes in its ranges.

No Boys Allowed, a Cassville High School all-female show choir, practices the show, "Communication." It has 28 singers. Jason Johnston reporter@cassville-democrat.com

"If you are an alto, they wanted to see if you've got low sounds and high sounds," she said.

Every Cassville student who auditioned for state practiced that song for months, Richmiller said.

The district chose four singers and two alternates in each section, consisting of soprano, alto, tenor and bass, for the state choir.

The judges had their backs turned to the singers in both auditions,

she said.

"They only hear you, so they are not influenced at all by how you look or your appearance," Richmiller said.

Allen Hightower, a music professor at Luther College in Decorah, Iowa, will conduct the state choir on Jan. 31, 2015, at Tan-Tar-A resort in Osage Beach.

The Missouri Music Educators Association and the Missouri Choral Directors Association oversees the auditioning process.

Cassville High School has two vocal performing groups: Centerstage and No Boys Allowed.

Centerstage has 40 singers and four band members, and the all-female NBA has 28 members.

Centerstage will perform three of the five numbers with the show, "Second Chances," at the Stars Over Seneca Show Choir Competition on Saturday. It performs all the numbers at Mount Vernon in January 2015, Nevada and Joplin in February 2015 and Webb City in March 2015.

NBA performs the show, "Communication," and it has the same schedule as Centerstage. NBA will perform three of the four numbers on Saturday. It performs all the numbers during the other competitions.

Each group not only sings, but dances.

In late July, the students had a three-day show choir choreography camp at The Ark in Eagle Rock, Richmiller said.

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