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The Middle Tennessee Vocal Association Honors Choir students from Robertson County. SUBMITTED

Just as different sports recognize talent and select all-star teams, some Robertson County young people were selected as members of the Middle Tennessee Vocal Association (MTVA) Honors Choirs.

 

Making the 2020 MTVA Elementary Honors Choir from Coopertown was Jeremiah King, Rikki Hudson, Logan Coleman, Chloe Ray, Julia Long, and Ellie Rushing.

 

Making the 2020 MTVA Middle School Honors Choir was Gavin Boatman, Isaiah Brakefield, Kaylee Bunn, Ashley Hanner, Justin Mayo, Jace Miears, Mallory Powell, Annie Rushing, Jonathan Spurlock, Andrew Thomas, Brandon Townsend, and Abbey Wilkerson.

 

Coopertown Middle School was represented with as many honorees as any of the top private schools in Middle Tennessee and the top public schools in Rutherford and Williamson Counties.

 

All the honor students gathered on Jan. 21 at Hermitage Hills Baptist Church to spend the day practicing their songs for a public performance that evening at 6:30 p.m.

 

There is a process that Middle Tennessee chorus directors and students follow in order to be eligible for selection.  In the fall, choral directors work with sopranos, altos, tenors, and bases to sing the same three songs in their respective parts.  

 

Each singer's songs are recorded on a DVD, given an identification number, and sent to a MTVA committee of choral directors.  The committee ranks each student's singing against their peers. The top singers are designated as members of the honor choir.  Schools are notified about which numbers were selected. The respective choral teachers then re-match the numbers with the names, and notify the students of the results.

 

The students are excused from a day of school to gather with peers from other participating mid-state schools. Dr. Dean Entsminger, of Belmont University worked with all the elementary students as their daylong conductor. Mrs. Kaye Schneider was his accompanist.  

 

Mrs. Jeanette Ebelhar was middle school conductor. Her Master's was earned at the University of Illinois. She was the excellent director at Pope John Paul II, who directed many award-winning groups.

 

Daniel Rushing is the chorus teacher at Coopertown Middle School. Rushing majored in vocal and instrumental music education at Lipscomb.

 

On a county level, elementary and middle school chorus teachers in Robertson County are working hard to encourage excellence in singing among their students.  They invite their promising young singers to participate in the Robertson County Elementary Honors Choir.  

 

Directors and singers give a Saturday in the Spring to practice their songs all day and then perform in front of parents and the public.  This year's Elementary Honor's Choir Day is March 7 at Coopertown Middle School. The free performance starts at 4:30 p.m.

 

Special thanks go to Dr. Causey and the School Board for supporting art and music education in the county. Amy West, the Principal at Coopertown Middle School is also committed to seeing students grow in their musical talent.  Most people's sporting career's comes to an end by their 20th birthday, but singing is something that they can enjoy all their lives.

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