‘Come One, Come All’: Vicksburg Chamber Choir preparing for spring season

Published 9:35 am Thursday, March 17, 2022

The Vicksburg Chamber Choir is getting ready for a new season and recruiting new members.

Christie Beasley is the new director. With a master’s degree in music education with a focus on voice, Beasley has taught a wide variety of ages and skill levels. 

“[In college], I think I had a different voice teacher every year,” she said. “It really helped me develop a love of vocal pedagogy, which is the teaching of the voice, and the manipulation of the vowels, to create that beautiful sound that you want.”

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The choir is actively recruiting new members. At the moment, it consists of a broad age range, from 20-somethings to retirees. The program is open to high schoolers as well, who are eligible for a student discount on dues, and there is the possibility of additional help for those who might need financial assistance. 

There is no skill level requirement for joining the choir, which practices at the Conservatory of the Fine Arts on South Street.

“Come one, come all,” Beasley said. “To me, a community choir is just that, we are not professionals, this is a volunteer organization, this is just a group of people that love to sing and have an appreciation for music.”

Beasley spoke about the upcoming season and the music the choir is working on for its spring show, tentatively scheduled for May.

“There’s one piece in particular, called ‘Love: Then and Still’ by Susan Labarr. She just arranges some beautiful music,” Beasley said. “That piece inspired [the show]. … We’ve all lost something along the way. Time heals the wounds, and the scars are left behind to remind us, but I loved you then, and I love you still.”

Glenda LaGarde, a chamber choir member since the 90s, said she loves the variety offered by the choir. Previously singing only in a church choir, LaGarde said she loves the opportunity to learn new styles of music.

“I just love music, and I think at that time a lot of the places we had to sing were the churches, and we wanted to try something with more variety, and something really challenging, and we found it,” LaGarde said. 

Fellow choir member Katie Hossley sat beside her smiling. This is Hossley’s first year as a member.

 “Ms. LaGarde asked me years ago,” she said. 

“Sometimes when you hear a good voice, and you find somebody who’s got enthusiasm, then I go fish for them,” LaGarde said. “I say, ‘Come and see.’”

For performance dates and times, check the Vicksburg Chamber Choir Facebook page and the Vicksburg Post Community Calendar. For those who wish to join, there is a link to the choir’s application form posted on the group’s Facebook page.