Spofford Choral Exchange

Spofford Chorus Exchange

workshop and concert

By Kathryn O’Brien/tritown@wickedlocal.com


Daniel Schmunk, of Lyricora, taught a workshop to Boxford Spofford Pond Chorus members and Seminary Hill School of West Lebanon, N.H. Chorus members, during a Choral Exchange, which included several hours of workshops that ended with a concert at Masconomet High School on Saturday, March 12.

Tri-Town Transcript

Posted Mar 24, 2011 @ 08:29 AM

Boxford —

Spofford Pond Elementary students had the chance to combine their talents with those of young singers from southern New Hampshire last Saturday when the two groups gathered for a day of learning and performing.

“The whole day was so [much] fun,” said Spofford Pond student Hannah MacDonald about practicing with the singers from Seminary Hill and Lyicora. “I got to learn from other professionals while learning what other chorus groups are doing. I’ve never been in a big concert like that; it was really exciting!”

Trish MacDonald, Hannah’s mom added,  “I was so impressed by the talent on stage, the professionalism and dedication of Mrs. Galardi, and just how far the kids have progressed since the beginning of the year.                   

Spofford music teacher Kristen Galardi led the group in vocal warm-up exercises followed by tonal warm ups taught by Yvette Courtemanche of the Seminary Hill School. The students attended several different workshops, including diction, tonal readiness, audiation, musicianship, harmony, and a capella singing.

Galardi earned a masters program at Gordon College where she and Countmarche met. “We’ve been planning this for two years. She and I use the same vocal pedagogy curriculum, Teaching Kids to Sing by Dr. Kenneth Phillips, and therefore our kids are pretty much on the same page, academically.

“We wanted to give our students an opportunity to work with peers on singing. Having them on the same level musically meant that we could take both groups much further in our vocal workshops. We also wanted to expose our students to a different school community and engage them in social interactions that would really create a sense of comraderie in the entire group, since we sang three songs in the concert completely together,” added Galardi.  

A highlight of the afternoon was a workshop with the a capella singing group Lyricora.

“As Yvette and I worked through several activities with the students, the best part was having the professional ensemble Lyricora work with them extensively. Lryicora presented the material in a fun and motivating way for young singers,” said Galardi.

 “Elementary age choirs are really important in nurturing young voices. Too many times students are looking to imitate voices of pop stars, which is very damaging to their vocal chords.,” observed Galardi.

A dinner of pizza, salad and rolls was served before the singers took to the stage to perform a free concert for family members and friends.

In a note of thanks to Galardi, mom Karla Shepard said, “I know a lot of time and effort from a lot of people was needed to make this possible. Michelle had a wonderful time, couldn’t stop talking about it, and was still humming when she went to bed. I also want to mention that the ‘Song of the Mira’ was very well done and it did in fact move me to tears. The whole day is a great reflection on you and the program you are building at Spofford. I am glad Michelle can be a part of it.”

Chorus member Allia Langill reflected, “I had an awesome time learning from Lyricora and performing at the concert even though I was nervous.”

Lianne Langill, Allia’s mom praised, “The entire day from practice to the workshop with Lyricora to the concert was a wonderful event for the children, it was very impressive!”

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