Back (L to R): Kayla Massey, Jack Desrosiers, Mrs. Julia Edwards. Front (L to R): Brady Milton, Cheyenne Toth, Ayla Dyer, Olivia Snowman, Audrey Fryda, Max Benton, and Sienna Toth

POLAND — On Wednesday, March 13, a small group of PRHS chorus members joined high school singers from across the state of Maine to participate in the first annual UMaine Secondary Choral Outreach Experience (S.C.O.R.E.) event, hosted by the University’s School of Performing Arts (SPA). With the help of a grant, the SPA was able to provide the music, t-shirts, lunch, and participation at no cost to the participating schools, and choral education professor Dr. Rebecca DeWan programmed a concert filled with a celebration of community, focused primarily on the issue of mental health awareness.

The featured major work for the mass choir was Aron Accurso’s ‘You Are Enough: A Mental Health Suite in three movements: I: Inside the Storm, II: A Thought Storm, and III: You Are Enough’ (text by Rachel Griffin). This piece gave students the opportunity to sing a major work and join about 100 voices in concert. It was incredibly timely and meaningful to our students, who were well-prepared and sang it beautifully.

To fill out the program, Dr. DeWan requested that participating schools share their own song in line with the theme of the concert. PRHS students decided to share Andrea Ramsey’s ‘I Lift My Voice’ from The Justice Choir Songbook, which they had learned in response to the horrific events in Lewiston in October 2023. Their performance followed a powerful offering from Lewiston High School’s Chamber Choir, who sang Kurt Bestor’s ‘Prayer of the Children.’ Students wept as they sang to each other and offered heartfelt messages through music.

In addition to PRHS and Lewiston HS, participating schools included Sumner Memorial HS (Sullivan, ME), Oxford Hills Comprehensive HS, Houlton HS, Mattanawcook Academy (Lincoln, ME), and Washburn District HS. PRHS singers were Max Benton, Jack Desrosiers, Ayla Dyer, Audrey Fryda, Kayla Massey, Brady Milton, Irelyn Smith, Olivia Snowman, Cheyenne Toth, and Sienna Toth.

Comments are not available on this story.

filed under: