OBU Hosts All-State Chorus Workshop

More than 250 students and teachers from around the state have gathered at Oklahoma Baptist University July 17-19 for the 2008 Summer All-State Chorus Workshop. The annual three-day event will conclude culminate with a free choral concert on Saturday, July 19 at 11:30 a.m. in Raley Chapel's Potter Auditorium. Dr. Lee Hinson directs high school tenors in sectional rehearsal during the All-State Choral Workshop at OBU. Oklahoma's choral students in junior high and high school are invited to attend the workshop. Choral teachers also may register to attend, and other teachers help OBU faculty and staff conduct the workshop as section leaders. Students who attend the event traditionally have a full weekend with many highlights said Dr. David DeSeguirant, OBU's associate professor of music and director of choral activities. These highlights include being introduced to great music, making new friends, getting acquainted with the university campus, having an opportunity to perform for an audience, and working with OBU's staff, faculty and students. "The highlight for me is standing in the middle of 160-plus singers and helping them achieve an outstanding sound, whether in the rehearsal or the performance," DeSeguirant said. "Seeing and feeling the excitement that preparing and singing great choral music creates for the singers is an experience that only conductors are privileged to know." The primary focus of the event is to help singers prepare for the All-Oklahoma Music Educators Association and All-Oklahoma Choral Directors Association auditions. However, teachers also can learn a great deal by attending the section and full rehearsals, DeSeguirant said. "The teachers are able to hear passages that present challenges for their singers and then focus their teaching toward improving those sections of music with those singers," DeSeguirant said. Information about the workshop is available through journals such as "Sooner Style" and OMEA's publication, "Oklahoma Music." Students and teachers interested in learning about next year's workshop also can contact the OBU Division of Music at music@okbu.edu.