The choir was in Florida from March 13-20, to perform at Disney World, as well as take in a workshop hosted by the famous company. It was also a chance for the choir to have some fun though, with a week long trip to the resort.
The main event was a performance for the park goers, down in the shopping district. For the half hour performance, around 150 people gathered to take in the show, with many more mingling around as they travelled through the shops.
The choir had many compliments from the spectators after the show as well, from their singing to the choir’s professionalism and maturity.
“The compliment we got the most was on our uniforms,” said choir member Jane Gillis.
Most of the songs they performed were by Canadian composers, however they cam from a broad range of sources. They ranged from I’s the b’y from Newfoundland and an Acadian folk song, to gospel and a Spanish folk song.
All the choir members present for the interview agreed there wasn’t a whole lot of nervousness when they went out on stage, and it was a very laid back atmosphere.
There was also a chance for a few impromptu concerts during the week as well.
“We had this really flamboyant waiter who found out we were a choir and said we had to sing for him,” says Gillis.
The choir didn’t mind though, and neither did the other patrons at the resturant.
The other main part of the trip was a workshop course hosted by Disney. The workshop covered everything from professionalism to characterization in performing. Characterization involved a lot more emoting and performing like the character instead of making the song their own. It was different than the classical techniques the choir is used to, but they say it was still fun to learn.
The choir was taught all this as they learned a medley from The Little Mermaid, which was recorded and set to scenes from the movie.
Outside the performance and the workshop though, it was a chance to have a good time and explore the park. The choir had a chance to hit all the major parks as well as Seaworld on their off days.
Though the days were long, choir director Kristopher Snarby says there were no major issues on the trip, even with many away from home for the first time. Of the 31 girls that went, 10 had never been on a plane, five or six had never been out of province, and many had never been out of Canada.
Getting the choir to Florida was no easy feat. The trip was not paid for by Disney, so the group had to raise the funds themselves. It took a few years, but they managed to hit their $60,000 goal earlier this year. The cost for each girl was about $2,000, but with a lot of fundraising in the community it worked out that they only had to pay around $250 each.
Snarby says they are incredibly grateful for all the support from the community.