Alma High School choir set a new school achievement by placing 30 All-State singers after tryouts held at Nettleton Baptist Church in Jonesboro on Feb. 2.
“This was a banner year for Alma as far as All-State honors. The students prepared for the competition before and after school during the entire month of January. Their work ethic and willingness to do what it takes was incredible,” said Mat Whitworth, Alma Choir Director. “It was a joy to prepare these students for this competition because of their work ethic. They are a positive reminder to me as to why I became a teacher in the first place — they make it fun and rewarding to come to work each day.”
Alma also set a new school record with 40 students qualifying to try out.
Of the 30 who qualified, Mason Walker and Maddie Terry were also selected as first chair.
“Making first chair is a huge honor as it designates the musicians as ‘best in the state’ for their voice part,” Whitworth said. “So, these all-state kids can be considered in the top 4 percent of the vocalists in state. Being first chair puts you in a class by yourself.”
Terry, a junior, is first chair Alto I out of about 120 who auditioned for the specific voice part.
This is part of a process which began back in October when over 10,000 choir students state-wide auditioned for all-region. Approximately the top 20 chairs from each voice part in each region qualified to audition for all-state with the top 50 being selected for one of the all-state choirs.
Walker was selected first chair (Treble Choir). Kaitlyn Morgan was selected second chair Soprano I (mixed choir).
The All-State clinic begins Wednesday in Hot Springs and concludes on Saturday with a concert starting at noon.
Alma’s next event is the Regional Choral Performance on March 2-3 at the Alma PAC. If the choir scores high enough, it will qualify for the State Choral Performance Assessment held on March 10-13 at UCA in Conway. The 5A schools perform on March 11.
ALMA ALL-STATE CHOIR: Soprano I — Kaitlyn Morgan (senior, second chair), Mia Callahan, Emily Firestine (senior). Soprano II — Cassidy Bates (senior), Alexis Quick (senior), Analise Black, Marcy McHenry (senior), Jaina Bauer.
Alto I — Maddie Terry (first chair), Taylor Burress, Jennah Brown, Emily Norton. Alto II — Emily Wright, Dani Sanborn (senior), Mason Walker (first chair), Kassidy Llemit, Olivia Gilreath (senior), Winter Recinos, Lily Parker.
Tenor I — Austin Meadors (senior). Tenor II — Dax Driggs, Joshua Puentes.
Bass I — Cameron Owens (senior), Noble Skadden, Spencer Moody (senior). Bass II — Riley Alegria, Adam Plank, Paul Gambill (second chair), Drew Garcia (senior), Peyton Canfield.