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VALLEY ROUNDUP | Woodland Hills

Choirs From 25 Southland Schools to Sing as One

April 28, 1999|ART MARROQUIN

One thousand teenagers will lift their voices in unison Friday at the Los Angeles Master Chorale's High School Choir Festival at Dorothy Chandler Pavilion.

Students at Taft High School fine-tuned their performance Tuesday for the festival, where they will sing six songs with 24 other schools from throughout Southern California.

Taft is one of six high school choirs selected to sing three additional songs in the festival's special solo showcase.

"I can't wait for Friday to come," said Taft senior Mirelle Sierra, 17. "The experience is going to be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for me."

Paul Salamunovich, music director for the Master Chorale, will conduct the students and members of the chorale in the combined concert. Salamunovich led the choirs in rehearsal April 17 at Glendale High School.

"I think it's going to be a great experience working with maestro Salamunovich," Ashley Thomas, 17, said. "We have a good music teacher, but this will be a great experience to work with another conductor and learn a different style."

The students have practiced every day since January during their fourth-period choir class. The singers continue to perfect timing on some songs, but they hope to have everything in place by Friday, said John Pease, Taft High's choir instructor.

"We always get a little jittery before big concerts, but this is going to be a great experience for them," Pease said.

In their spotlight performance, Taft students will sing "Good News," a spiritual song, "This Is the Heaven All Delighting" from the opera "Alcina" and "Il Est Bel Et Bon," a French madrigal song meaning "He Is Beautiful and Good," "Doing a solo performance gives us a sense that we need to do our best so we stick in people's minds," said senior Dorian Velinov, 17. "We want people to remember us for our great voices."

Other Valley schools scheduled to sing Friday are Glendale Adventist Academy, Glendale High, Van Nuys High, Grant High and Crescenta Valley High.

The free program starts at 10:30 a.m., but reservations are required. The Dorothy Chandler Pavilion is at 135 N. Grand Ave., downtown. For information, call the Los Angeles Master Chorale at (213) 626-0624, Ext. 14.

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