Liz Turner was sipping a cup of coffee on her back porch when she got the email.
It was a cooler day in June, her kids were asleep and her husband was at work. In that moment, she had no one to tell, but it didn’t make the news any less real: she and her students were going to Cincinnati.
Months later, it became reality: Turner, who serves as choir director at Faubion Middle School, Associate Director Courtney Wilson and the Faubion Middle School Treble Choir performed a seven-song program at the American Choral Directors Association national convention on Feb. 23.
It was a significant moment for Turner, but also for McKinney: the performance marked the first time a choir from McKinney had been invited to the conference, she said. The Faubion group was also one of about 24 choirs to perform at the convention--it was also one of the two middle school choirs selected for this year.
“For our girls to be selected was a pretty incredible honor,” Turner said.
The choir’s program included tunes hailing from Ecuador, Germany and Serbia, as well as pieces like “The Little Road” by Moira Smiley and “As the Tree Stands Tall” by Daniel Schreiner. The music performed by the choir is typically sung by college choirs, Turner said.
“I think it’s a lot about not limiting your singers,” she said. “A lot of times, we look at middle school kids and we limit what we think they have the ability to achieve, and I’ve never been one of those people. I set the expectations and the bar really high, and they keep meeting it, so then you have to raise it even higher.”
She described the performance experience as a “mountaintop experience” for everybody.
“The girls, I don’t think they will ever forget it,” Turner said. “I think they will always find new ways to share what they experienced.”
Turner said she’s since had audience members from around the United States and some from Germany reach out.
“To hear from other people that they were impacted by the experience of that concert just means the world, and the fact that I got to stand up there with those girls, I will never forget it.”
Post a comment as anonymous
Watch this discussion.
Welcome to the discussion.
Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.