High school vocalists from central Kansas gathered at McPherson College for the first ever Heartland Choral Festival on Tuesday, October 30. The choral festival was an opportunity for high school choir members to enjoy singing together.

“Typically, musical ensembles are adjudicated or are expected to prepare individual performances,” James Bowyer, associate professor of music and director of choirs, said. “Our event brings together singers selected by their choir directors to form a large festival choir. It’s a celebration of choral singing without the added pressures. Students can simply come and sing.”

The vocalists learned three pieces of music and attended a group warm-up lesson and rehearsals throughout the day. At the end of the day, the students performed an impromptu concert.

Professor Bowyer conducted the chorus and Nicholas Griggs, choir director at McPherson High School, led a round table discussion with high school teachers in the morning. More than 150 high school students attended. The festival will become an annual event for the college.