I sang with the World Children’s Choir for ten years – from elementary through high school. My family and I made wonderful friends who we are still close to today. First and foremost, in my opinion, I learned how to sing, how to love and appreciate vocal performance and beautiful music, and the importance of music in the development and well-roundedness of children. As a child I had the opportunity to sing at the Kennedy Center, White House, Carnegie Hall, Constitution Hall and more. We sang with and for Denyce Graves, John Denver, Whitney Houston, US Presidents and First Ladies. The choir provided these experiences that I would not have otherwise had. The WCC established a musical foundation - I studied music and voice in college and sing professionally today.
I''m happy to report that the World Children's Choir has a scholarship program for children from families that are financially disadvantaged. Information is available on the choir's website: http://www.worldchildrenschoir.org/FAQ.htm#29
As the Fairfax County After School Network Coordinator for the Fairfax Partnership for Youth, I initiated a very rewarding partnership with the World Children's Choir. Our first project was a performance at our annual youth awards breakfast in 2007 which was repeated with much acclaim in 2008. We worked toegether to establish the "Performing Arts at the Heart of Literacy Program", as an outreach effort to engage disadvataged youth in the Falls Church area. This unique extracurricular enrichment program culminated in a joint appearance with the World Children's Choir at the arts festival at George Mason University.
We have been involved with the choir for over six years. I have gone from proud parent to production manager to board member. I remain a proud parent, the production manager and secretary on the board. This organization is simply amazing. The talent, the training, the comraderie, the organization, are all stellar. The children support and nurture one another - from the oldest to the youngest. The choir is absolutely a team effort and the talent is top-notch. They receive rave reviews wherever they go!
I was a member of this choir for 8 years and I would not be the person or singer I am today with out WCC. The choir sings in many different languages and has a very diverse group of singers. As a member I felt honored to be in such a rich musical and cultural learning environment. Every time I sung in a concert with WCC I felt like we were making absolutely beautiful music, as well as passing on a message of hope and love for the community. Sandy and Jim are both extremely dedicated and talented people who have succeeded in creating an enjoyable, enriching experience for the choir and its many audiences.
Being a member of the choir was one the defining things in my life. It set me up for a life long passion for music. It helped me as a child to better understand my privilege and provided me with a a passion to reach out and help people through music.
WCC is an amazing choir born from the magic mix of professionalism, love, and vision of her founder and director, Sondra Harnes, and his husband and pianist, Tim. I don't cease to be amazed at how the very little ones learn to love the music and feel a valued part of the ensemble. WCC intiatives to integrate inmigrant children into its ranks, looking for scolarships and other kind of funding, is also to be praised. And of coures, the choice of music, finding a cultural bridge among countries and races, creating a common language out of many, is at the very basis of a learning experience about how to communicate in peace and harmony.
My years with WCC have been one of the most memorable times of my life. They set the foundation for my singing career as I learned to sing as a soloist and to create beautiful harmonic sounds with the other choir members. Having the Dutch nationality, it was fantastic to get to know many kids from all over the world, to learn about their cultures and to make new friends.
I was a founding member of the WCC and it gives me great pleasure to say so. WCC gave me the opportunity to enrich my life through song, dance, cultural exchange and even my first job out of high school! I learned to really focus on music, working together with my fellow choristers to make the most beautiful and emotional sound we could. Our concerts are some of my fondest memories of childhood. I felt so special to be a part of something so great.
The World Children's Choir is a wonderful organization. My daughter has been a member for over a year now and has grown significantly in many areas. Not only has she improved her singing voice and learned songs in many different languages she has developed many wonderful friendships with her fellow choir members. Her confidence has grown through performing in front of audiences, large and small. Sandy and Jim are extremely talented instructors who know how to capture and keep the attention of so many young people.
My daughter has been singing with the World Children's Choir for six years. The artistic training is superb, but more importantly, through song, her attention has been drawn to peace among people, respect for other cultures and protecting our planet. The choir has performed at many high level events, and my daughter has gained confidence, and also learned the ethic of hard work. She loves the Choir and the friendships she has built over the years.