Being a part of CCSA has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my life. It has given me so many opportunities to meet new people and experience things that I would never have been able to otherwise. The friends I have met, lessons I have learned, and the memories I have made are things I will carry with me for the rest of my life. There is a story Mrs. McCormick tells on the last day of the season opening retreat. The story is about a tribe in Africa and in this tribe every member has a special song that the other members sing to them at crucial life transitions. I may not have grown up in that African tribe, but I have found my song. I will be forever grateful to Mrs. McCormick, Mrs. Taute, and my family for teaching me my song and singing it to me when I forget it. As I leave CCSA, I know that in life sometimes I will lose, but I will frequently win and either way I am deeply loved by God, my family, and my friends at CCSA. There may be moments when I feel a little warbly, but so have all the great singers, and if I just keep singing I’ll find my way home.
Tag Archives: marguerite mccormick
In middle school, I chose to play an instrument over being in the school choir because my school schedule wouldn’t allow for both. However, I loved to sing so my parents had me try out for CCSA. I thought it would be a substitute for that school choir experience but quickly saw how CCSA would be so much more than that for me. The music was harder, later with complicated rhythms and harmonies. These made learning and perfecting them more of an accomplishment than I would have experienced in public school. As the music got to be more complex and challenging, my enjoyment singing with the CCSA increased in proportion. Also, the caliber of the voices in the groups made the performances sound amazing and I felt satisfied and proud after every single one.
Singing with CCSA has made me a great listener, a better performer, and a more accomplished singer. The past seven years have helped fine-tune my musicianship as well. Some of the experiences I had with CCSA, such as singing with the San Antonio Symphony Orchestra and going to Washington D.C. were astonishing, and made me feel like a professional singer.
Ms. McCormick and Ms. Taute have always made me feel extremely valued and treated me with great kindness. I am glad I got to be a member such an awesome organization and will miss these wonderful teachers/directors who I’ve spent a significant portion of my life with.
I have been a member of CCSA since I was 7 years old. These 11 years in the choir have been filled with wonderful friendships, top-notch instruction and repertoire, special opportunities to learn from collaborations with professional musicians, and the privilege of bringing music to our community through a great variety of venues.
When I began in the Prelude Choir, Mrs. Morgan’s playfulness drew me in. Then Mrs. Taute and Mrs. McCormick took over the process of making me musically literate and supporting the development of my voice. They have challenged me with learning difficult and truly beautiful repertoire, always motivating me to give more in a climate of joy and respect. They have instilled in me a sense of commitment and reciprocity. All of our voices work together to make the music. This is at the heart of my friendships with my fellow singers. Mrs. Taute and Mrs. McCormick have also helped me to begin to develop a set of public professional skills that will serve me for a lifetime, such as punctuality, professional attire, posture, diction, and delivery.
Over the years we have had so many wonderful opportunities to make music with talented musicians, like the Mastersingers, YOSA, the San Antonio Symphony under both Ken David Masur and Sebastian Lang-Lessing, the San Antonio Opera, as well as visiting directors, like Barbara Baker. While singing with the Young People’s Choir of New York City I felt the immense power of joining voices with other youth to bring music to the people. I am forever thankful for my time with CCSA.
My time in CCSA has been wonderful. I started when I was in the 4th grade, nine years ago, in the junior chorus. I remember how I loved going to rehearsal but how scared I was of making a mistake in front of Mrs. McCormick, however my enjoyment of singing kept me returning week after week. Eventually, I realized that she was just trying to develop me into the best singer I could be. This tradition of excellence and discipline continued throughout my years in CCSA and transitioned into many aspects of life besides choir. Many of my successes, outside of choir, I attribute to the discipline and dedication to detail that I learned from Mrs. McCormick and Ms. Taute. I have many happy and fond memories, i.e. the first Luminaria; practicing and singing Barbershop with Ms. Taute and her “Men”; singing with the Symphony on my birthday and being transported by pedicab; the New York trip; the very recent composers’ concert and many many more memories. The friends I’ve made and the experiences I’ve been fortunate to have will be something I’ll always cherish. Thank you Mrs. McCormick and Ms. Taute for always believing in me!
For the past 11 years, CCSA has been like my family. I remember going to Kindermusik at age 4 and 5 and my teacher, Ms. Patti, recommended it to my mom. I started at age 7, with the wonderful Miss Morgan, and ever since, CCSA has been a part of my identity. I’ve had some very cool experiences, and it has really helped with my self-confidence. Singing the solo in “Here’s to Song” will be bittersweet, but hopefully not too emotional, since I now know I am always welcome back until I am 22. I am not one to force things on people, but if you love music, singing, and performing, I would definitely recommend CCSA.
Looking back at my time in the Children’s Chorus of San Antonio, I can’t help but remember all the amazing moments that I have had and the skills I have gained over the last 7 years. I know I will use the knowledge I gained from this experience in my study of music in college. However, as I write this I find myself getting sentimental and know I will miss my weekly choir routine. It is hard to put into words the feeling I experienced making music with this group. All I can say is that being in the choir was the best choice I ever made. I am grateful for the potential that Ms. Taute and Mrs. McCormick saw in me and the wonderful experience of singing with the Children’s Chorus.
Since you left CCSA, have you ever wondered about your fellow singers?
- Whatever happened to that smokin’ hot tenor?
- That loveable chaperone who went on tour?
- That weight-lifter in the bass section?
- That flighty accompanist? That popular soprano?
- That dark-eyed goth in the alto section?
Well, this is your chance to find out! Please join your friends from across the decades as we reunite and reconnect for our 30th Anniversary alumni reunion and concert.
Alumni Reunion | Saturday May 3
- Saturday May 3 – Reunion | 6-9pm | Radius Center, 106 Auditorium Circle, SATX 78205
- Reservations: $30.00 per person; $40.00 after April 11th
- Buffet dinner – cash bar
- Dress: Fiesta casual
- Toasts and tributes to Mrs. McCormick
- Impromptu rehearsal for Sunday’s concert
- Ages 18 and older are invited to attend; bring your significant other! Former liaisons, chaperones and parents welcome!
Click here to RSVP today at the early bird price! Your reservation to the alumni reunion also includes your ticket to Mrs. McCormick’s final concert on May 4 (see next).
Final concert | Sunday May 4
On Sunday May 4, all CCSA choirs and special guests will present their final concert of the 30th Anniversary season and a stirring tribute to Marguerite McCormick as she conducts her final concert with CCSA. And, yes, you will be singing! All alumni are invited to join in for the final section of the concert to perform O Music, Here’s to Song and For the Beauty of the Earth. We can’t think of a better way to honor Mrs. McCormick than to join together in a community of song.
Your ticket to Spring Song is included in your RSVP to the alumni reunion (see above). Not attending the reunion and would like to attend the concert? Click here for tickets!
Don’t remember the words?
Need to brush up on the tunes? Click here to send us a quick note and we will supply you with PDF’s of the music and MP3’s of the parts and accompaniment to help you prepare.
Who: The Children’s Chorus of San Antonio
Where: The Witte Museum, 3801 Broadway, 78209
When: Tuesday February 11 @ 5pm
CCSA’s training choirs will present a lively demonstration and performance in conjunction with the Witte’s Free Tuesdays. Informance offers a unique behind-the-scenes view of the comprehensive training our young artists receive each week. Come watch artistry in action as we guide our singers down the path to excellence
CCSA will perform with YOSA and members of the San Antonio Symphony as part of the citywide Dvorak festival on Sunday January 26, 7pm at St. Mark’s Episcopal Church. Tickets start at $8 and are available by clicking here or calling 210.826.3447.
The Children’s Chorus of San Antonio announces the appointment of Dr. Doreen Rao as Interim Artistic Director for the 2014-2015 season, following the retirement of Founder and Artistic Director Marguerite McCormick at the end of May 2014. CCSA has focused on providing exceptional performance and education opportunities to the young people of San Antonio for 30 years and has been preparing for this transition for the past two years. Plans for Rao’s season with the organization include: opportunities for area music teachers and choral directors to work with and learn from Rao in a series of workshops and masterclasses; collaborations with YOSA, the San Antonio Symphony and other area performing arts organizations; and the opportunity for young artists from all walks and corners of San Antonio to experience Dr. Rao’s spirited leadership style and innovative programming in community-wide events.
Executive Director Anne Schelleng noted, “We are thrilled to bring Dr. Rao to San Antonio and to create fantastic opportunities for our community to engage with this leader and visionary in the choral and music education field. From our youngest artists to our peers, colleagues and audiences, it is our goal to unite our community and to lift their lives through song.”
About Doreen Rao
Dr. Doreen Rao is known for her ground-breaking work in music education and is celebrated for her spirited and moving concerts. Linking the standards of performance and education with the goals of diversity, inclusion and social responsibility, Rao’s seminal work teaching young people to sing inspired a generation of conductors and teachers to lead young choirs in schools and communities around the world. 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 Georg Solti, Margaret Hillis, Claudio Abbado, and James Levine. Rao holds the University of Toronto’s Elmer Iseler Chair in Conducting Emeritus; as Director of Choral Programs, she established and led the Faculty of Music’s Graduate Program in Conducting. Appointed Music Director and Conductor of the Buffalo Philharmonic Chorus in 2008, Rao also holds the Cameron Baird Conductor’s Chair working in close collaboration with the Grammy Award winning Maestro JoAnn Falletta and the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra. Dr. Rao is currently consulting with CCSA in preparation for her term as Interim Artistic Director beginning in June 2014.
McCormick will leave a legacy of service to young people in San Antonio, starting with founding CCSA with 33 singers in 1983. During her tenure, singers have travelled around the country and around the globe and have made their mark on the San Antonio community. Performance milestones include several premieres, recordings and a fully staged baroque opera. The program has also blossomed into a multi-faceted organization with six performing ensembles, two neighborhood community programs and ten early-childhood classes serving almost 400 young people annually.
The 30th Anniversary season will conclude with an alumni reunion on May 3 and a grand final concert and celebration on May 4, 2014 in fitting tribute to their Founder. McCormick remarked, “It will be a wonderful celebration of singers past and present and will provide the perfect opportunity for our audience to enjoy the best of CCSA. This celebration offers a fitting close to my leadership of the Children’s Chorus.”
About The Children’s Chorus of San Antonio
The CCSA was founded in 1983 with the mission to bring choral music education and performance opportunities to San Antonio’s young artists. Programs include seven performing ensembles for children and youth ages 7–18; Music Together® with CCSA, an early-childhood music and movement program for infants and toddlers ages birth–5 in four locations including Haven for Hope; Big Kids® for youngsters ages 5–7; and Project: Sing!, neighborhood-based satellite ensembles for elementary-aged children in Harlandale, San Antonio, South San Antonio and Edgewood school districts. CCSA Singers represent San Antonio and surrounding communities, performing in a variety of concerts throughout the city. Advanced choirs have traveled nationwide with feature performances, toured Europe and Canada and have been featured on NBC-TV’s Today Show. CCSA ensembles regularly perform with YOSA, the San Antonio Symphony and the San Antonio Mastersingers among others.
For additional information on CCSA, please call 210.826.3447 or visit www.childrenschorussa.org.