KW Dorian Vocal Festival

Kenyon-Wanamingo High School Choir students that participated in the Dorian Vocal Festival, pictured from left to right, Madison Thompson, Belle Patterson and Skye Blauer. (Photo courtesy of Stephanie Schumacher)

Three Kenyon-Wanamingo High School choir students participated in the Dorian Vocal Festival Jan. 12-13 at Luther College in Decorah, Iowa.

Students are nominated by their school choir directors, then selected based on an application to the Luther music faculty.

During the two-day festival, they rehearsed and performed five pieces as a choir of nearly 1,000 voices. Something special about the festival this year is that three of the composers of these pieces were present and worked with the students on their music. Hearing about the text and the music directly from the composers was an inspiring process and brought the music to life. Directors had the privilege of attending a composition workshop with Elaine Hagenberg, who also conducted the soprano/alto voices on her piece “Song of Miriam” in rehearsals and the concert.

The high school juniors and seniors got a taste of college life, living in the dorms and eating in the cafeteria. K-W students were fortunate to be hosted by recent K-W graduate Amber Olson, who is a first-year student and sings in Aurora, the first-year soprano/alto choir.

“Dorian was an amazing experience for me! It was so wonderful and moving to sing with about 1000 other kids, making beautiful music,” said K-W 12th-grader Belle Patterson.

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