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Unison Festival 2014 combines talent from across UCPS

Approximately 140 students join their voices during the seventh annual Unison Festival.

Approximately 200 fifth graders from across the county participated recently in the seventh annual Unison Festival, one of the few events in UCPS that includes students from all 30 elementary schools.

This year’s event was held in the Cuthbertson High School auditorium. There were 140 students who sang in the choir, 40 who played in a recorder ensemble and 20 who played in a percussion ensemble.

Participants were chosen by the music teacher at each elementary school based on attitude, aptitude and enthusiasm for music.

On the day of the festival, all students rehearsed together at Cuthbertson High School, and gave a final concert performance at 4:00 p.m. in the school’s auditorium.

They performed songs from music legends like the Beatles and American singer-songwriter Phillip Phillips. They even performed a song from the Broadway musical hit “Rent.”

This year’s Unison festival was coordinated by Kristin Hinds, a music teacher from Stallings Elementary School, and Jeremy Ryder, a music teacher from Waxhaw Elementary School.

"I am so proud of the collaborative effort of our Union County music teachers,” Hinds said. “Our festival was a great success because of the dedication and teamwork of our colleagues who go above and beyond. It was a great experience for students and teachers alike, showing the ability of music to bring people together."

Ryder had similar thoughts. "I thought it was fitting that the concert ended with the song ‘Home’,” he said.

"‘Trouble, it might drag you down. If you get lost you can always be found. Just know you’re not alone, cause I'm going to make this place my home.’ It doesn't matter what part of the county you are from, we are all here working together because Union County is our home, and I, for one, am proud of it," Ryder said.

The conductors for the event were all UCPS elementary music teachers. They were Paula Yurkovich, Beth Matthews, Evan Stevens, James Wagner, C.J. Michael, Jessica Lequire, Lisa Andrews, Melissa LoPresto, Amber Mattatal, Matthew Noonan, and Bridget Burrow.

Written by: Deb Coates Bledsoe, UCPS Communications Coordinator and former Director of Elementary Education Tom Bulla
Posted: Apr 23, 2014 by Deb Coates Bledsoe

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