Three-hundred, sixty high school choir members converged March 7 at Western State College in Gunnison to sing in an honor concert. Of the 360, 13 came from Moffat County High School (MCHS).
"This festival equates to the state finals in wrestling," Moffat County School District sixth- through 12th-grade Choir Director David Hurst said. "It is quite an honor to be selected."
The 48th annual Western Slope Music Festival was held March 6-11 at Western State.
Musicians were selected through auditions in October. MCHS choir students auditioned in Meeker with three other high schools for the chance to attend the festival. Thirteen students from Moffat County tried out for the festival and all 13 were chosen.
Sixty high schools were represented at the festival.
The group of singers was divided into two categories 180 were a part of the Women's Honor Choir while 180 participated in the Mixed Honor Choir.
Both choirs sounded excellent, Hurst said, and all the work paid off as participants were able to sing with the best in the state.
The festival is sponsored by the Western State music faculty, Western State Student Government Association, Western Collegiate Music Educators National Conference chapter and the Gunnison Volunteer Fire Department.
"The kids have to work hard and prepare music outside of class," Hurst said.
Proceeds from ticket sales benefited the Gunnison Volunteer Fire Department.
The next performance of the MCHS choir will be 7 p.m. April 18 in the MCHS auditorium. After that, they will perform in the Large Group Ensemble in Steamboat Springs with schools from across the state.
MCHS students participating in the Western Slope Music Festival were:
Soprano I: Sally Vallen
Soprano II: Erin Cashion, Beth Grieser, Brenda Kinsley and Aubrey Ripkoski
Alto II: Tiffany Ripkoski and Elizabeth Shonts
Tenor II: Joshua Firestone and Scott Whinery
Bass II: Kip Holdridge and Ben Koucherik
Soprano I: Melissa Luke
Alto II: Chandace Markham