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Eaton sends two to All State Choir

Celsi Jurgensmeier, Staff Reporter

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On a brisk day in October, Luke Pickett (18) and Adam Richling (18) nervously strode into Fort Collins High School for the All State choir audition. Four months later they were performing at the Buell Theater in Denver.

The Audition

On October 27, pitted against 3000 of their fellow high school singers from all over Colorado, the two performed their best in front of a judge even though both believed that the spots were out of reach for them.

According to choir director Christina Contreras, the All State Choir audition process is difficult, even more so than most college auditions. The students went through a process of singing a solo and an impressive classical piece in front of a judge, along with sight reading music, performing prepared scales and triads, and then singing at a very specific interval. Lastly, the judges play a few intervals and ask the students to identify them. These are all skills that require ear training, voice training and musical theory.

Contreras also said that All State Choir is similar to Honor Choir, but at a much higher level. The students who were chosen were given difficult music to learn and practice on their own, outside of school. The college-level songs are sometimes written in different languages.

Good news

Pickett and Richling’s work ethic inside and outside of the classroom paid off. One month later, right around Thanksgiving, Pickett and Richling received the news that they had been selected for the All State Choir. Contreras said, “They worked really hard. You have to compete with the top in the state, and the audition process is very rigorous.” This is the first time in the director’s career she has had two students selected for this honor. “This is my 13th year at Eaton High School,” Contreras said, “and the first time anyone had gotten in was three years ago. I have never had more than one student make it. This is the first time ever two students have made All State since I have been here.”

Both humble students were astonished when they heard the news.

Richling said,“ I was extremely excited and surprised when I found out that I had made it in. I was surprised because I thought I didn’t do too well in the audition, so I was not expecting to get in.”

Pickett said, “ I was surprised because I didn’t feel super confident that I did well. But apparently I did.”

Looking ahead

As the future beyond high school nears, both students have decided to keep singing within their reach as a hobby or in whatever way choir may align with their future plans.

Pickett plans to attend Aims Community College and then transfer to University of Northern Colorado to study secondary education.

Pickett said, “I love singing and I will definitely pursue it in the future, but it’s not my first choice. It is more of a ‘if it happens, it happens’ kind of thing.”

Richling plans to attend Colorado University Boulder to study engineering and also take part in the band.

Richling said, “ Singing is a lot of fun for me, but it is more of a hobby. I intend to continue to be involved in choir in college, not to major in choir, but get a music degree of some sort.”

The concert

Pickett, who has been to the Buell many times, said, “ It is a big theater that has three levels and the stage is huge. It was amazing being able to sing on it. I felt important because I have seen

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Eaton sends two to All State Choir