Colorado Children’s Chorale group visits Craig |

Colorado Children’s Chorale group visits Craig

Lee Harstad

Elementary school students from Craig, Hayden and Maybell will be immersed in the energy and professionalism of the Colorado Children’s Chorale Tour Choir. Today through Wednesday, students from the Hayden, Ridgeview, Sunset and East elementary schools will listen to the 36 members of the group sing 45-minute performances. Fourth-grade students from Craig and third- and fourth-grade students from Maybell will have a workshop with the Children’s Chorale, refining choral skills and learning elements of stage movement and choreography.

According to Ridgeview Elementary School music teacher Barb Nagoda, fourth-graders practicing will then have the chance to perform with the Children’s Chorale.

Hayden’s second- and third-graders will perform with the Children’s Chorale at the Hayden Valley Elementary School performance at 9:15 a.m. Tuesday.

Fourth-grade choir students will also get the chance to join the Children’s Chorale on stage in a community concert at 7 p.m. Wednesday in the Moffat County High School auditorium. The concert is free and open to the public.

“Their performance is just a big variety of music,” Nagoda said. “It is really a professional performance and it is a special opportunity to get something like this here.”

While Chorale members are in the area, they will stay with Hayden and Craig families.

The Children’s Chorale has been performing for 26 years. Their performances, directed by Craig Denison and Mary Louise Burke, consist of mixed selections including staged works and memorable choral selections from classical, folk and popular traditions.

According to Nagoda, having the Children’s Chorale perform usually costs a school district $6,000, but this trip to Northwest Colorado will be funded by the Colorado Council for the Arts.

The Colorado Children’s Chorale, according to Nagoda, is an elite group of students. Becoming a member of the Chorale is an honor, and commitment from members is very involved.

“It is a pretty intense thing,” Nagoda said. “They really are professionals.”

The chorale group is the recipient of the 1999 Governer’s Award for Excellence in the Arts and the El Pomar Award for Excellence in Arts and Humanities. The performances are part of an extended state tour sponsored by the Colorado Council on the Arts, which is funded by the Colorado General Assembly and the National Endowment for the arts.

The choir annually trains 400 members between the ages 7 and 14. Since its founding, choir members have sang with numerous world-renowed artists such as Placido Domingo and John Denver, and performed for numerous dignitaries including Pope John Paul II, the Dalai Lama, presidents, emperors and first ladies of the world. Broadcast appearances include NBC’s “Today Show,” CBS “Christmas Special with Kathie Lee Gifford,” and annual radio broadcasts.

Tours have reached 46 of the 50 states and internationally to China, Hong Kong, Japan, Taiwan, South Korea, Switzerland, France, England and Scotland.