Each year the choir students go on a tour; this year they went to American Leadership Academy (ALA) and Arizona State University (ASU). The team takes this trip to bond as a group, become a part of a family that will last a lifetime, and learn to have a wonderful experience even in uncomfortable situations.
Making a family out of a team is a bonding experience and gives the students a way to learn together. Alexis VanLeuven a senior alto explains that, “It is a week of sharing our music and talents across the states while learning how to grow independently and as a family. We get to grow special bonds with each other and continue to grow friendships that will last a lifetime.” Building friendships is key to making the students feel comfortable around one another. This comradery aids in the groups togetherness in their singing. In addition to building friendships, learning together creates a special connection between the students.
Choir students were pushed out of their comfort zones while being far away from home. “On this tour I learned how to push myself out of my comfort zone more than I ever had before tour. And I truly felt like I belonged,” a bass and junior , Brooks Marler declares. He explained that although the trip was not completely enjoyable, the tour did provide a great experience and a new comfortability for many students. In addition, sophomore Aubrey Barnard another alto mentions being taken out of their safe space as well: “ I talked to people who I wouldn't normally do and did things that were out of my comfort zone. It was wonderful!” Even though both Marler and Barnard were taken into uncomfortable situations they still had a fantastic time.
Choir took this retreat to help vocalists learn more about their craft and build stronger bonds amongst the group. Jaden Brighton, a sophomore bass, expresses, “I was almost in tears for those who couldn't make it because I knew it would be a life changing experience. Needless to say, I was correct.... ASU was a destination that still quakes in my heart. Dr. Jace Saplan taught us exercises and a mindset that I will never forget.” This event brings a new perspective to the way choir students are studying and gives them a chance to explore more about musical study. “Final night, we had a Sum It for the tour in which a lot of people got up and said what had impressed, improved, and connected among the choirs.” Ammon Creager, another sophomore bass exclaims, finding new ways to learn and adapt together as a big group had helped the students work more with what they could expand on and what they could fix within themselves as a family.
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