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From Brendan Schweigart

Hornell High School Choral group will perform tonight at St. Ann’s Church, 6pm

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Singers invite the public to attend dress rehearsal before upcoming national competition in Washington D.C

By Andrew Harris

Hornell Director of Vocal Music, Chris van Leeuwen, will lead a massive student choir in a final dress rehearsal before leading the group of 95 students to Washington D.C. Once they hit the national capital the students, who comprise four different choral groups, will compete against schools from all over the country.

This is the fourteenth year of competition for van Leeuwen, and the community has taken notice. Local businesswoman and avid supporter of all Hornell students, Regina Gambino, had this to say about the vocal group:

“THIS WILL BE AMAZING!! The HHS Choir never disappoints!!!”

Tonight’s performance will give Hornell music lovers a great sneak preview of the upcoming competition in Washington D.C. The group will compete as a Class A school, but as van Leeuwen explains, the Hornell student singers will have a chance to compete with much larger schools:

“The “size” represents the district’s 10-12 grade enrollment. Hornell competes in the Single A Division with an enrollment of around 300 students. However, all ensembles are rated and ranked regardless of school size when considered for “Best Choral Program” honors and “Best Individual Ensemble” awards. Despite our relatively small size, Hornell has brought home top honors numerous times when competing against schools that graduate over 700 students a year. In total, over the last 14 years, HHS Choirs have received over 40 Gold Ratings at competition.”

Hornell’s top singers will have some great opportunities to tour the nations capital in between performances. One highlight of the trip will be on Friday April 1, students will have the honor of receiving a military briefing from military personnel at The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Arlington National Cemetery. 

Stay tuned to the Hornell Sun for updates on the group trip and results from the competition.

Good luck to the students, staff, and families making the trip !!

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