One of the features of the Fall Choir Concert at North Kansas City High School was the guest choir of 8th graders from Eastgate and Northgate middle schools.
One of the things that was news to us was that Eastgate, where our kids went to middle school, had a new music teacher — Andrew Bowman. The Mr. Swetnam that taught both our kids, a longtime feature, had finally retired. He directed the first of the two songs by the 8th graders, with accompanist Kath Stanley. The song was Didn’t My Lord Deliver Daniel?, a spiritual arranged by Greg Gilpin.
It was a well-done piece, though we could sense just a touch of discord through the male section, the attempt to control changing voices.
The second song was directed by Jackie Meilink, longtime choir director at Northgate Middle School, accompanied by Debbie Lassiter. The song was America, My Country — written/arranged by Brad Printz.
This song was a good patriotic theme, but had a moment during the male singing of “I’m a Yankee Doodle Dandee” where someone just couldn’t stay on the tune. Fortunately the moment didn’t last long and subsided to the same low-level dissonance felnt in the first song. That allowed the harmonies and familiar melodies to bring us back to an enjoyment of the singing our our students.