When it comes to singing, Dodge City Middle School (DCMS) students are being inspired at a young age.
DCMS’ seventh grade choir enjoyed a workshop on Friday, Nov. 22 with Dodge City Community College’s Kerry Kuplic, assistant professor of vocal music and director of choirs.
When it comes to singing, Dodge City Middle School (DCMS) students are being inspired at a young age. DCMS’ seventh grade choir enjoyed a workshop on Friday, Nov. 22 with Dodge City Community College’s Kerry Kuplic, assistant professor of vocal music and director of choirs. According to DCMS Vocal Music Director Patricia Ahern, the decision to hold the workshop was made so that the students could be exposed to an outside voice. “I always think it’s good for the kids to hear another professional musician other than myself,” Ahern said. She said that it was particularly beneficial for them to see a male singer, given the number of boys in this year’s choir. During the workshop, Kuplic discussed matching pitch and projection. He told students to pick a focal point across the room and project their voice to that point. He also stressed the importance of knowing what a particular song is about, from “Deck the Halls” to more somber compositions. “It went very well and the kids really took to him and they were just amazed when they heard him sing,” Ahern said. Ahern said she hopes to have Kuplic return two or three times in the spring. The vocal program at DCMS features two choirs, one for seventh and one for eighth grade. In the spring, an after-school honors choir will be open to sixth, seventh and eighth graders. Despite their young age, singers at DCMS do a lot of performing, including concerts. Singers also attend festivals and Ahern said the program has grown over the past few years. Perhaps most importantly, Kuplic’s visit to DCMS could be indicative of the importance of musical education at a young age. “We really at the middle school feel like we need to hook the kids at this age,” Ahern said. “… I think this kind of recruiting piece indicates that it’s possible to sing throughout your whole life, that it’s not just a class that you take, that it can be beneficial for lifelong learning.”