Tag Archives: choir rehearsal

Advanced Ensembles Rehearse with Dr. Doreen Rao

IRaoPRshot (1)n preparation for the opening of the Tobin Center for the Performing Arts, CCSA’s treble and mixed advanced ensembles gathered last week for four days of rehearsal with Interim Artistic Director Dr. Doreen Rao.

Rao flew in from Chicago to not only teach new music for next season, but to also bond with the ensembles and foster a community of support before the season even begins. She will return to San Antonio in late July when she directs the 2014 Elementary Honor Choir at the TCDA Convention, held July 27-30.

The singers were excited to work with Rao, describing her as “enthusiastic,” “energetic,” and “hip.”

“I like her vibe,” said Mishel Malik, a CCSA singer in the mixed chorus. “She’s active, she’s…youthful, she knows us, she understands us…I like her.”

“I think of her as…very fun, and she has set the bar high for us,” added Luna Montoya, who is also in the mixed chorus.

Rao is known the world over for her groundbreaking work in the field of music education. Appointed music director and conductor of the Buffalo Philharmonic Chorus in 2008, Rao holds the Cameron Baird Conductor’s Chair. She also holds the University of Toronto’s Elmer Iseler Chair in Conducting Emeritus. During Rao’s long association with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, she prepared the award-winning Glen Ellyn Children’s Chorus (Anima) for concerts, tours, and recorded performances that won four Grammy Awards and a Grand Prix du Disque under Sir George Solti, Margaret Hillis, Claudio Abbado, and James Levine.

Rao blog1

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Senior Reflections – Emily Grau

The day I auditioned for the Children’s Chorus, I was terrified.  I was a shy fifth grader stepping far out of my comfort zone. Over my eight years in CCSA, I have developed the confidence that comes with being a performer.

I have been blessed with opportunities to perform with conductors who inspired me, singing music, which both excited and challenged me.  Under the guidance of Mrs. McCormick and Mrs. Taute, I have learned countless lessons about being a member of a team and musicianship.  Most importantly, I have made wonderful friends through my involvement in the choir.

Thank you to the Children’s Chorus, especially Mrs. McCormick and Mrs. Taute, for giving that shy fifth grader a chance to grow!


Senior Reflections – Sonny Luna

Music is something that has been a part of my soul from a very young age. By being a member of CCSA, I was able to turn my love of music into a working talent and for that I am eternally grateful. My time with the CCSA has been one of tremendous growth, increasing talent and close friends. It has been a chance for my siblings and I to grow closer and experience something together. Over the past 9 years or so Mondays (and previously Tuesdays and, before that, Thursdays) have held what can honestly be called an ever-fluctuating emotional status in my life. CCSA wasn’t always easy and the fun and camaraderie were often juxtaposed by rigorous rehearsals and difficult pieces. There were times when Monday afternoons were literally the best part of my week. Other Mondays consisted of a rather long, grouchy ride leading to the choir rooms of AHUMC. Despite this, there is nothing like the cold nervousness of being on stage before a show. Nothing like the peace you feel as your mind simultaneously focuses on every single note and beat and yet feels entirely empty. Your body works off of muscle memory and your eyes lock onto the conductor as the world focuses down into nothing but the music. There is a difference between singing a piece well and losing yourself in it but I always strive for that moment of cleansing. I will miss my time at CCSA but I will never stop singing.


Senior Reflections – Brandy Vickers

My past 7 years in CCSA have gone by so fast; I can hardly believe that it is already time to say goodbye. I will always remember the amazing lessons that being a part of this chorus and this family has taught me – about singing and about life. I have loved singing since I was a young, inexperienced child and through my years in CCSA my love for singing has only grown. Thanks to the great direction and dedication of Mrs. McCormick and Mrs. Taute, and to the support and unending love of my fellow singers, I have become a confident singer. Some of the places and pieces that we have the opportunity to sing are as unique and awe-inspiring as the people I get to share the experience with as a part of CCSA. The camaraderie that exists amidst the choir members is something special – it takes a certain group of people to appreciate all the nerdy choir sayings. The memories I have from choir will continue with me throughout my life. I will never forget the trips to Mo Ranch for the retreat my first few years in Chamber Choir, sitting on stage at the Majestic for the first time, and harmonizing to “Happy Birthday.” There are so many reasons that my time with CCSA has been awesome, but the most important has to be getting to sing with a group of people who share my passion for music.


Sing with CCSA in Stone Oak!

Who | The Children’s Chorus of San Antonio
What | Junior Chorus North program for children ages 9-11
Where | Northern Hills UMC, 3703 N Loop 1604 East
When | Thursdays from 4:30 – 6:10pm, starting January 5, 2012

The Children’s Chorus of San Antonio (CCSA) is uptown with a training choir outside of Loop 1604 to reach families in Stone Oak and neighboring communities. This ensemble is the latest in a series of new programs designed to reach young artists across San Antonio with the same great experiences that are a hallmark of the organization. Singers participate in weekly rehearsals that nurture their artistic and personal potential through a comprehensive curriculum of performance and instruction. They also have the opportunity to develop the confidence, poise, maturity, self-esteem, and self-discipline necessary for success in music and success in life.

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Try before you buy

Friday August 12, 4:00 – 6:00pm

We are hosting an open rehearsal and demonstration session for all interested families! If you would like to know what it’s like to sing with CCSA, we invite you to join us this coming Friday afternoon at Northern Hills UMC, 3703 N Loop 1604 East.

  • Meet your directors and other interested young artists like you
  • Enjoy singing, movement and good times. Guaranteed!
  • Information on joining the CCSA will be available at this event

If you are interested in attending, please let us know! You may click here to respond online, call us at 826.3447 or simply reply to this email.

We look forward to meeting you on Friday!


CCSA’s last round of auditions will be August 12 and 13.

The Children’s Chorus of San Antonio (CCSA) is holding the last round of auditions for the 2011-2012 season on August 12 and 13 at Alamo Heights United Methodist Church. Singers ages 7 – 13 are welcome to audition for choirs rehearsing in one of three locations around town.

CCSA is a community based organization serving greater San Antonio; our mission is to bring the highest quality choral music education and performance opportunities to our children and youth. Our membership represents a true tapestry of San Antonio’s rich culture!

  • Boys and girls ages 7-18 rehearse weekly during the academic year in one of five training and performance ensembles
  • Singers learn musicianship and vocal technique – and develop valuable life-ling skills including confidence, poise, self-esteem and discipline.

Families interested in membership in CCSA are encouraged to visit our website at www.childrenschorussa.org or call 826.3447 for information and registration.