Sheldon High School has some news to sing about.
This year, three students (Sariah Bryce, Amber Hughes and Jamey Guzman) were selected to perform in the California Central Region Honor Choir, sponsored by the American Choral Directors Association.
As the school’s choir director for 18 years, Stafford Hebert said he was proud to see his three students perform at the University of the Pacific in November—beating out hundreds of other auditionees. The students attended two days of rehearsals and performed before a packed crowd, including family and friends.
“Students learn how to work with a different conductor and see his approach to making music,” Hebert says. “Plus, it’s a way for them to sing with other students who are just as talented and dedicated as they are.”
In addition, Bryce will represent Sheldon at the All State Honor Choir this March in San Jose.
“Being selected for All State Honor Choir helped me realize that I am capable of more than I originally thought,” Bryce says. “The more I’ve pushed myself to aim higher, the easier it has been to find confidence in my skills.”
Hebert said he noticed a difference in the three students when they returned to his classroom after the concert. Hughes felt it, too.
“When I got back to my high school choir, I felt like I had successfully learned seven honor choir songs in a week,” Hughes says. “Now, instead of shying away from musical questions from my peers, I am able to put my voice out there to help them and mentor them to their fullest potential.”
This was Guzman’s second year performing with the CCRHC. Last year, she said the performance passed her by “in a wide-eyed blue of wonder and excitement,” but this year she felt more introspective.
“This time, as I walked on stage, I reflected back on how much I had grown in the past year and how grateful I am for the chance to have this experience twice,” Guzman says. “Invaluable experiences like this one make it crystal clear that my life path will lead to music.”