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Skyview honor choir chosen again for Carnegie Hall

For the second time in three years, Falcon School District 49 music teacher Harriet Jarmon will lead 28 talented students to New York City to perform at Carnegie Hall.District 49’s Skyview Middle School eighth-grade honor choir was chosen as one of only six choirs nationwide to sing at the Field Studies International Choral Festival April 20. “It’s a big honor to be the only school in Colorado to be chosen,” said Josh Steinert, a choir member.The selection process began with the students auditioning for honor choir at the beginning of the school year. Jarmon chose 39 vocally gifted students, and rehearsals began. “These students are so dedicated,” Jarmon said. “They work very hard and represent the district well everywhere they perform.” Jarmon submitted an audition tape of the choir to Carnegie Hall last November and received the invitation to perform prior to Christmas break. The students were ecstatic to learn of the acceptance. “This gives us a chance to really show what we can do,” said student Savannah Showalter.The students, Jarmon and the chaperones leave Colorado Springs early April 18 for their four-day trip. Upon arriving in New York City, the students will begin a strenuous practice schedule that includes two rehearsals per day for two hours a day until their performance. In preparation for the trip, they practice daily for 45 minutes and soon will begin after-school practice as well. “We are waiting to order the music, as I am praying we can get sponsors to help pay for it,” Jarmon said. The Carnegie Hall conductor chooses the music the students will sing, which amounts to seven songs. The cost is about $3,000.The cost for the trip per student is $1,400. Jarmon, D 49 teachers and parents have planned several fundraisers, including a silent auction Feb. 15 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. in the Skyview Middle School cafeteria. Up for bid are “theme baskets.” “We have numerous baskets to include a health spa basket, kitchen gadgets, entertainment, golf, Valentine’s Day, Hispanic culture, and a very special Broncos basket. Randy Gradishar, an inside linebacker for the Denver Broncos from 1974 to 1983, has put together a Broncos basket that included an autographed football. “It’s a wonderful gift for any long-time Broncos fan,” Jarmon said.Another fundraiser includes a discount card for many local restaurants and entertainment venues, such as Mr. Biggs. The cards cost $15 and are good for one year. The students also sell candy bars to raise funds.The choir is seeking tax-deductible donations from businesses and individuals. Each business that donates will have the business name placed on the back of the students’ shirts they will wear during their trip.”We need financial help to make this trip a reality for the choir students,” Jarmon said. “It will be an experience that they will never forget and perhaps set them on a career in music.”The trip won’t be all work. The organizers have planned a visit to the Statue of Liberty, Ground Zero and a Broadway play. “It’s a total educational experience that the students have earned,” Jarmon said.Student Miranda Sandoval summed it up: “It is an honor to sing at Carnegie Hall as representatives of our school.”Send donations to Skyview Middle School, 6350 Windom Peak Blvd. Colorado Springs, CO 80922. Please write “honor choir” on the memo line for checks.For more information, call Brandy Roboin at 683-8333 or Salaria Jarmon at 494-1410.

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