Choir Singer Focus: Chris Collins
I have been singing as long as I have been breathing.
I remember my first time on stage was at one of my Grandmother’s Pythian Sisters shows. I only knew one song, and apparently needed to share it with everyone there, from the stage. Then when I was five years old, my parents bought a piano, and took lessons at “Metoza’s Music.”
My first choir experience was when I was in 4th grade. Mr. Hamilton had been hired to teach 5th grade at my elementary school, and started a chorus. We sang “When Green Grow the Lilacs” and I recall loving hearing our different voices sing in harmony. The following year, I also learned to play alto sax (because my older sister was graduating high school and didn’t need it anymore). In junior high, I also got involved in band and choir. I was told that I needed to choose one or the other as an elective for high school, so I chose choir. Our director, Louie L. Lewis, was an amazing musician with perfect pitch. We learned a lot under his leadership, and the Analy Acapella Choir won Command Performance every time we competed in the CMEA festival. I continued to pursue my love for music and majored in vocal music at Santa Rosa Junior College and San Jose State University.
When I had to return to college to seek an elementary teaching credential, I majored in creative arts with an emphasis on music, and I have led school choirs since I started teaching.
Singing in choirs has kept me anchored for decades. The camaraderie, challenge, and beauty are good for the soul. We have great fun getting into the music, and when it comes together, it is a great feeling. For me, it is always a supportive place.
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Christ the Good Shepherd
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