BHS choral awards follow concert

Published 9:29 pm Friday, May 14, 2010

The Bainbridge High School spring choral concert given Tuesday evening was described by music educator and director Claritha B. Jacobs, as a celebration and culmination of a year’s worth of work.

Program selections reflected that theme beginning with the first strains of Thomas Morley’s, “What if I Never Speed,” sung from the back of the church sanctuary by the premier Bella Canta Ensemble.

Other pieces from each of the boys and girls choruses, the concert choir and two soloists were sung before annual awards were presented to those students who have made special strides and achievement.

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Of special note were the two featured soloists. Aleshia Samuel who sang. “Oh What a Beautiful City,” by Edward Boatner; and Xavier Bell, who performed Carl F. Mueller’s “Create in Me a Clean Heart, O God.”

Both Samuel and Bell received honor musician awards. Samuel placed second in girl’s solo at the Georgia High School Regional Literary contest this year, while Bell was a member of the boy’s quartet that placed third. Other quartet members were Chase Allen, Deltrice Turner and Andrew Cooksey.

Both Samuel and Bell made all state chorus at the Georgia Music Educators Association this year, as did Elizabeth Lewis. Samuel has been a member of the all state chorus since seventh grade, and is expected to go for her sixth time next year.

Samuel and Bell also attended the Future Music Educators Conference this year.

Jacobs elaborated on this program that fosters future music educators. Interested students must submit an application and resume, write an essay, and obtain teacher recommendations. Those chosen spend the weekend conference observing music educators to see what is involved. Jacobs praised Samuel for being her co-director and taking charge when Jacobs is gone from the classroom.

Jacobs also recognized those students who had made the most progress in their musical education through the year. Most improved singer awards went to Kristina Brown as a member of the chorus, Elizabeth Lewis from the Bella Canta ensemble and to Andrew Cooksey, a member of the concert choir.

Nine of the singers this year are graduating seniors. Each received choral awards. Ebony Jackson and Alexandria Harter were given four-year awards; Deltrice Turner, Ladonta Milline, Sarina Pearson and Herbert Peterson, three years; Adrienne Akins one year; and Ambrica Johnson and Ashley Bates one semester of service.

Special note was made of Capria Miller, a student who is not even enrolled in chorus, but whose love of singing compels her to come during her lunch time to sing with the chorus.

“That is real dedication,” said Jacobs.

Service awards were presented to Niki Harter, Ebony Jackson, Rachel Harrell, Aerin Kirkland, Elizabeth Lewis, Aleshia Samuel, Xavier Bell and Deltrice Turner.

Choral spirit awards were given to Sarina Pearson, Lindsey Kennedy, Jessica Rogers, Caleb Inlow, Herbert Peterson, Allison Samuel, Lyndi Denham, Devante Daniel, Alaina Finuff, Capria Miller and Senobia Gilbert.

The program took place in the sanctuary of the historic First African Baptist Church on Webster Street and musical accompanist was Christine Banaghan.