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Beginning of School 2021

Updated: Sep 10

Hello everyone! These Director Notes emails typically go out once a month to provide information to our choir families of things happening and opportunities in the choir department. Please read through the entire email.


After more than a year of not hearing full choirs in my classroom, it has been an absolute joy to work with the students this week! We've learned, shared, and made music and IT IS WONDERFUL!

1 Welcome new and returning students and families!

As our world continues to deal with how COVID-19 has and is affecting our lives, I want you to know that my number one priority is to keep your students and you safe. With that said, I am committed to making choir the best it can be and every student within those choirs the best that they can be! We will sing together! We will be doing concerts and events throughout the year! We will continue to work on individual vocal production and music reading skills! We will move forward and grow and as a result be better! We will do this together! We ALL are a choir family!

2 COVID-19 considerations

I want to be transparent with everyone.

  • I am fulled vaccinated.

  • I have 2 large Medify Air Filters running throughout the school day in the choir room.

  • I have additional small Medify Air Filters in the practice rooms for students taking lessons and our voice faculty.

  • While CDC recommends 3 ft spacing, I currently have the choir room set up with 6 ft spacing between students.

  • We will ALL be wearing masks over our nose and mouth during class until further notice.

  • I STRONGLY encourage every student to have a 2nd mask that they will use during choir class. We will be singing, chanting and sight reading. This will make the inside of any mask humid which could be uncomfortable if worn into the classrooms that follow the student’s choir class.

3 Choir BIG meeting – August 30 – 7-8pm - MANDATORY – Anderson Theater

This is a new event this year, but very important! I wanted to give an opportunity for everyone, students and parents, to come learn about how things work in the choir program as well as have a chance to answer questions and meet the Choir Booster Officers, Choir Council, and me. I’ll cover everything from expectations and concerts to voice lessons and our spring trip. Please put August 30, 7-8pm in the Anderson Theater on your calendar! See you there!

**I will have a zoom link for any of you who don’t feel comfortable coming into the theater for this in-person meeting.

4 We NEED Choir Booster leadership moving forward!

We have had wonderful parent leadership in our Choir Boosters for years and we want to see that continue. Most jobs require small amounts of time. The more people we have volunteer, the less work for everyone! Our Choir Boosters make so many events happen for our students. I CAN’T DO IT WITHOUT YOU!

Two positions we want filled as soon as possible. Both are shadowing positions this year with the intent of taking over the position next year. You will learn so much this year and that will make next year more comfortable. Please consider and click on the link below:

Signup Genius link for Choir Booster Volunteers:

https://linkprotect.cudasvc.com/url?a=https%3a%2f%2fsignup.com%2fgo%2fVoVLXzb&c=E,1,8QdPM9KUeR42mm2Z8zkbBjStPxP82ve5lXzztugVNPG3qhZMIfzi2QSeQJiZaXWzm820rv1rxwMoQadEWbDPuOsnWaGQuDfhu-CaZ9yPmOsaDyiYnb4tXA,,&typo=1

5 Purchasing and paying choir fair share fees can be done ONLINE! Ideal due date = Sept 6

Please go to www.trojanchoir.com and click the MORE tab.

Then click on PAY FEES ONLINE.

Here you can pay for (Most credit cards and Paypal accepted):

Fair Share Fees (student T-shirt included in this fee) – Please pay by Sept 6.

Join the Boosters at a chosen level of support.

Pay for All-State entry fees if desired – this must be paid by Sept 21.

Pay for Solo Contest fees if desired – this must be paid by Jan. 6.

Support another choir student with an optional donation.

The following items are available for purchase for a limited time only.

Sale ends on these items Sept 6.

Purchase a choir yard sign (limited time).

Purchase a T-shirt for parents (limited time).

Purchase a Duffle bag or Uniform bag (limited time).

6 REMIND

This is a one-way mass text messaging service that I use to communicate reminders

to the students. Parents are welcome to sign up as well. Each class has a specific text

in order to receive that class’s information. Students cannot respond to the text and

neither individual’s phone number is shown.

If you choose to participate, standard text messaging costs apply. Messages will show

up as Mr. Beussman: “message”

When you sign up for the first time, you will receive a text asking for your birthdate

(we can’t text students younger than 13) and your name to populate the class. Please

Use your first and last name. Once done, you’re done. If you already use Remind for

another class, you will just be added to the appropriate choir class as well. Many

students did this in class over the past two days. Parents are welcome to also sign up

for their student’s class.

If you have trouble signing up, try going to the Remind.com website

and download the app or choose to receive the texts via email.

Below is the easy way to sign up. Students should know which class to sign up for.

However, if they do the wrong class, I am able to move them.

Please use your first and last name when signing up:

1st period – Bel Canto: Treble Choir

Text @belcanto6 to the following #: 81010

3rd period – Concert Choir - Tenor/Bass Choir:

text @3men to the following #: 81010

5th period – Nova Voce - Treble Choir:

text @5freshmen to the following #: 81010

7th period - Chorale: Mixed Choir:

text @2chorale to the following #: 81010

Zero hour – before school – Madrigal Singers:

text @madsingers to the following #: 81010

7 Stay connected!

Websitewww.trojanchoir.com

Volunteer to help, calendar, music, pictures, forms, general info, links etc.

available in one place.

Remind – see above

Facebook Group - www.facebook.com/groups/andersonhighschoolchoir

Calendar events and pictures.

Instagram: @Andersonchoir

Follow and see pics from throughout the school year.

Blend – I will be using Blend for some assignments this year.

8 Handbook

The choir handbook can be found on our website and is attached to this email. Please read through the handbook. Then have you and your student sign and return the handbook contract (attached).

9 Heath Release Form

Please fill out this form (attached) as completely as you can. This not only will help me take care of your student in case of an emergency, but also provides me with needed information regarding allergies etc.

10 Calendar

Attached is our choir calendar for the school year. Please get all of these dates on your family calendar immediately so that conflicts can be prevented.

11 Fall Choir Retreat – Sept 11 – 2-10pm

This is our choir time of fun, games, and singing for ALL current choir members.

It happens here at Anderson in the cafeteria, gyms, and choir room.

Parent chaperones and I will be present during the entire event.

This is a great opportunity for students to get to know each other better within their

choir and across the other choirs. It is one of the most fun events we do all year!

More details to come.

We will want 100% of choir student participation at this event!

12 Voice lessons

We offer one-on-one voice lessons for students who are interested. We have an incredible voice teacher, Jenny Ohrstrom who will be working with our students once again this year. We encourage everyone to consider lessons. If we have enough interest, I will hire more teachers. Lessons can really help students accelerate their vocal development as well as give specific attention to an individual’s music learning needs and voice concerns. Most of our students who excel at the individual competitions take private lessons. We highly encourage your child to take lessons particularly if they are participating in the All-State audition process and for solo/ensemble contest. Fill out the attached form, scan it or take a picture of the second page and return them via email to Mr. B!.

13 All-State info:

The All-State audition process is rigorous, but it’s also a great learning experience. I hope that several of our students will participate in these auditions next year. If you are considering competing in the All-State Audition process, I have some information to share with you. For first year students, the first round of auditions is similar to Region auditions in middle school. However, the music is more challenging (we do 3 or 4 songs each round. You will know the song selections, not cuts, in advance) and you compete against all grade levels on your voice part. First and second year students CAN do very well in this process. It's all about being prepared. To help you get started, please do the following:

1 The TMEA All-State music has been announced and can be found at:

https://www.tmea.org/divisions-regions/vocal/audition-material

You can also see voice range of each part to help you decide which to audition on. Voice teachers can also help you with this. The voice part you sing in choir is not necessarily the best part for you to audition on. Not sure, please ask.

We have all the recordings on our website so you can listen, download and practice. Our website is www.trojanchoir.com The password for that portion of the site is fireant.

I would suggest listening to choirs on Youtube singing these songs. Here is a playlist: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLRxLPbce4PjGkr4U1GthweS83Rcgcye7K

2 Let me know your name and what voice part you are planning to audition on. It is NOT necessarily the voice part you usually sing in choir. Use the following link: https://forms.gle/fbvNjUeU1U6RtVjA8

3 Music packets can be ordered through www.jwpepper.com Type Texas All-State School Choir Packets in the search box. Then choose either Large school Treble or Large school Tenor Bass. These can be mailed directly to your house. Meanwhile, I can provide Xerox copies until your order arrives.

Attached are the songs that will be judged each round. A lot of the learning is done by the individual. However, we will also have group rehearsals available starting next week.

14 FAQ Sheet

Confused about some of the events our choir or individual choir members participate

in? Read the attached FAQ sheet to get some answers. Also, come to the Choir BIG

Meeting mentioned above.

15 Follies

Our fall concert always has a theme! This year’s will be revealed soon. Meanwhile,

please note that there are multiple performances and a dress rehearsal for this event.

16 Letter Jackets

Some of our seniors have earned a Letter in choir and will be notified next week!

17 Anderson Choir Concerts – These are required co-curricular events. All choir students must

participate. These are graded performances as they are part of our curriculum.

18 Choirball – Fantasy Football

This is just something fun I like to do every year. It has nothing to do with choir. Click on the following link and fill out the google form if you’re interested in a little friendly competition.

https://forms.gle/CHkKtGtqo3j9Nuqx7

19 Contact:

Director:

David Beussman – david.beussman@austinisd.org

Office phone – 414-7926

Booster President – Julie Choyce – ahschoirtx@gmail.com

Choir Website: www.trojanchoir.com

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