Everyone needs a break once in a while; for some people, it could be going on a run or reading a book. For many students at Bonneville High School, that break is going to choir. Two students, Mikaila Young and Walker Steffen, provided additional information on this.
Mikalia Young, a senior at Bonneville, is a member of Bonnevaires, the top choir at Bonneville. Young is an alto section leader and in Chanteuse. Young reported that “going to choir is a bit of relief from the rest of high school.” At Bonneville, there are several choirs available for students to join. Two of those choirs, Bel Cantos and Bonnevaires, are “audition-based choirs” according to Director Steven Dresen. Bel Cantos is an all-women choir, while Bonnevaires is mixed. Joining Bonnevaires is a significant achievement because students must compete against others and try out for a spot in the group. Another student in Bonnevaires, Walker Steffen, declared that since he has been in choir for a long time, auditioning was not really a problem for him. However, for some students who have never gone through an auditioning process, it might be stressful.
After auditioning, the students who have been selected start rehearsing for their various concerts and performances. Although rehearsals may differ, each practice follows a similar structure. When asked what a normal day of rehearsal looked like, both Young and Steffen responded by saying they warm up first by doing scales and some sort of vocal exercise. After warm ups, the students break off into groups to dive deeper into the music. The chosen piece is usually dependent on the upcoming event or performance. The last five minutes are reserved for talking about goals and how the group can accomplish them together. In choir, it is essential for individuals to work together to ensure that the end result is the best it can be. Young mentioned that the choir's friendly atmosphere creates a positive working environment. She stated: “There's something so beautiful about being surrounded by people who love music as much as you, and just being able to create with them is a pleasure.” Steffen stated that the only thing he would change about choir would be the time. Steffen wished the classes and rehearsals were longer to avoid being rushed. Even though the classes may be on a time crunch, a devoted vocalist will dedicate the necessary time to be successful.
Bonneville provides students the chance to unwind by joining a choir. Regardless of whether it is men's, women's, mixed, Bel Cantos, or Bonnevaires, everyone is offered the chance to feel included and relaxed.