Grades 7-9 chorus collaborates with composer to create music

Weedsport’s 7-9 chorus has completed a months-long composer collaboration project. Thanks to APT funding, the group of students was able to work with west-coast composer Chari Glogovac-Smith

Mx. Glogovac-Smith first met with students via Zoom in March. Their first lesson together focused on how to write lyrics. In each following class, students would spend 10 minutes working on their own set of lyrics, allowing them to be creative and share their feelings.

“It is important for people to have an outlet, it lets them express themselves so they don’t bottle things up,” reflected one student who participated in the project.

You can find a list of the lyrics students came up with here. All of the lyrics were sent to Mx. Glogovac-Smith to put together common themes and set them to music. In their next Zoom meeting, students discussed the commonalities found in their writing and the type of mood they wanted the music to represent.

“My experience writing the song lyrics was eye opening. My lyrics were heartfelt and I meant every word of them with my whole heart,” explained another student who participated.

Following some drafts and emails back and forth with Mx. Glogovac-Smith, the piece was complete in early May. That’s when students started to rehearse. There was no in-person concert for the 7-9 chorus this year, so students were asked to virtually perform the piece. Each student could choose between individually recording their own performance, or writing a reflection about the composer collaboration project.

“I think it helped to transform Zoom/virtual chorus from a “glass half empty” to a “glass half full” scenario this year,” said music teacher Rachel Kerr.

You can watch the final performance of the composer collaboration project below, or by clicking here.