Dana Van Slyke, Choral Director
 Website Archive

 2010-2011 | 2009-2010  |  2008-2009


Visit the Photos page for links to the archive of Herndon Choir photos for 2008-2009, 2009-2010, 2010-2011
, 2011-2012


Quick Reaction Needed!

MORE PE AND LESS MUSIC legislation is being voted on by the state legislature tomorrow, Monday Jan 23 - many responses are needed today.

Please  take a moment to read the attached and send a message to your senator by THIS MONDAY. It is in regard to the amount of time spent in PE in elementary schools. It could have a HUGE impact on music in our schools.

Thank you,


Attention Madrigals

Here is the list of December performances. Info also available on calendar link above.

Please print out, complete and return the appropriate forms below to Ms Van Slyke ASAP.

All Singers-Parent authorization Form and  Emergency Care Information Form.

All Student and Parent Drivers-Field Trip Driver License and Insurance Form.

Attention Cabaret Cast, Bennett Street Boys and Shebees!

Here is a list of special rehearsals that will take place the week of  Dec XXXX. Most of them are during  school hours including Stinger periods.

Thank you to our wonderful singers and everyone who helped out at the scholarship fundraising dinner at HUMC.
We raised almost $900!

A Note from Dana-

A big thank you to everyone involved with our Scholarship dinner at Herndon United Methodist Church. I was so sorry not to be able to attend but was thrilled to hear that it was such a successful event. Thank you to Julie Frederickson, Beth Czerwinski, the HUMC community, the Herndon Choral Boosters, my student directors Amy Rosenquist and Robin Falci,  and all of the student singers!  I am very proud of you. Thank you to all for your support as always. We have the best and brightest in the Herndon Choir Department and the most giving parents!

I know we will be able to support our students with many scholarship opportunities. Thank you for making this possible!


Here it is! The Beauty and the Beast singing audition material.  Please choose the song that you can sing most expressively and the one that presents you at your best. We will call you back if we need to hear more specific roles from you. Please note that the characters in this show sing with a wide range so all principal character sing somewhat high and somewhat low.

PLEASE LEARN TWO SONGS SAMPLES. You will probably only sing one but we might want to hear two.

Click Here for Sheet Music

Song Choices are as follows. Click on link to hear practice tracks.

Men Only:Gaston or If I Can’t Love her

Women only:Belle or Home

Anyone: Be our Guest or Beauty and the Beast

Elementary Children:Human Again and Belle or Beauty and the Beast

Get Dance Audition Choreography Here


Calendar of Events

A Note of Thanks from Dana-

Dear Herndon High School Choral Parents,

I am very grateful…
This spring has been filled with success for the Herndon Choir Family.   I am so proud of our accomplishments.   I have three unfinished piles of thank you cards for all of the individuals who have helped to make our spring events a success. Before time passes any further  I need to make sure you all know how much I appreciate you giving of your time and caring for me and the choir students of HHS!

District Choir was a huge project. Headed up by Melanie Miller- Cvilikas, with much organizational support from Julie Frederickson and Kara Rider, our event touched over 450 kids’ lives in an event that they will always remember. It was hours of work, from many volunteers and I am very grateful for all of that attention to detail.

Our trip to Disney was incredibly smooth and so fulfilling. We definitely made some lifetime memories in Orlando 2011!  Thanks to Barbara Ramey. She singlehandedly paved the way for us to have no choice but a successful adventure! As she always has in the past!  Thank you Barbara!  The seamless hand off to Andie Lytle was made with great finesse.  Andie handled anything that came at her in Orlando ( once again ably assisted by Melanie M- C. ) with confidence and best of all a sense of humor which was truly appreciated by our weary ( yet stellar) group of parent chaperones. Our chaperones were there to help to comfort and to celebrate alongside our kids. AND BOY WAS THERE A LOT TO CELEBRATE!!!!!!!! Thank you parents. We could not have done it without you once again!!!!

Jim and I would like to personally thank you for your support in making his concert on Sunday a reality here in Herndon. Thank you to Melanie and Julie for all of the PR. Thank you to Courtney for the beautiful program. Thank you to Jerry for the Tech assistance and to Nina for the tickets.  Thank you to Kathy for all of the e mail communication throughout.  Thank you for your support in your attendance.

I apologize that I cannot always express my gratitude through personal notes in a timely enough fashion.  I also apologize if their names that I have failed to mention.  I hope that as we work our way through the school year, each year,  I get a chance to speak with each of you and that you will know how much it means to me and the singers at HHS to have you helping us reach our goals.

As my son Conor enters high school next year, I hope that I can support his teachers the way you all have always supported me.
Thank you,


Baccalaureate and Graduation Information

June 12-All Madrigals and seniors in attendance will be performing at the Baccalaureate Service. Report to the Choir Room at 2:00 pm. Dress in nice spring dress clothes.

June 17-All Madrigals and all seniors will be singing the national anthem at graduation.
Dress in nice spring dress clothes. Madrigal underclassmen meet Ms. Van Slyke in the choir room at 11:30. Transportation by carpools will be arranged.

Did you miss Costume Turn In?     

All costumes are required to be checked in. Bring your costume to Ms. Van Slyke for check-in tomorrow.

 If you are not going to be in the same choir next year, then turn in your costume.
  If, however, you are singing in the same choir this year and next, you can choose whether you want to store your costume at home over the summer or store it at school. If you choose to store it at school and you want to help ensure that you get back the same costume that you turn in,write your name in large letters on a white trash bag and place it over the hanger/costume. This will make your pick up process much easier in the fall.

Costume Check In/Turn In Procedures

All costumes must be dry cleaned in advance of storage for the summer. Please arrange for that now. Turn-In procedures have changed. Please read below.

All costumes are required to be checked in. If you are not going to be in the same choir next year, then turn in your costume.  If, however, you are singing in the same choir this year and next, you can choose whether you want to store your costume at home over the summer or store it at school. If you choose to store it at school and you want to help ensure that you get back the same costume that you turn in,write your name in large letters on a white trash bag and place it over the hanger/costume. This will make your pick up process much easier in the fall.

Congratulations to Mrs. Van Slyke for being selected to receive the Wolftrap Performing Arts Teacher Scholarship Award for 2011!

One performing arts teacher from each of the surrounding counties is chosen each year to receive a $2500 grant award to be used to honor the teacher, their students and enhance their classroom teaching.

Ms Van Slyke was nominated by the FCPS Fine Arts coordinator last spring. Ms. Van Slyke submitted a proposal and was officially notified in October by Wolftrap that she received the award.
She used the award money to commission a song to be written for her students to perform. She may also try to get the piece published.  Representatives from Wolftrap will be at the premiere concert at our year end event on June 6th and will make an official presentation at that time.

Sheet Music

Audio Tracks
It's Ragtime

Disney Awards Galore!  A Multitude of Thanks to our Leaders and Chaperones. Congratulations to our wonderful singers.

Many thanks go out to Dana and Jim, pre-trip coordinator Barbara Ramey, and Andie Lytle and her crew of amazing chaperones ( listed below) for all of their time, energy and passion in making sure that our kids had an amazing trip. We are all so appreciative and cannot thank you enough.

All five choir groups received superior ratings
Best in class awards went to Concert Choir, Show Choir, Vocal Jazz and  Madrigals
Show Choir was awarded the overall Silver Mickey Award in the Specialty Choir Category
Vocal Jazz and Madrigals tied for the Gold Mickey Award in the Specialty Choir Category

Hannah Glass received the Outstanding Vocal Soloist Award for her solos in Vocal Jazz.

Guitar 3 received an excellent rating

Guitar 4 received a superior and best in class

Melanie Miller-Cvilikas
Letty and John Bobby
Susan and Scott Allen
Jennifer and Mike Skinnell
Dana Harold
Caroline Newlon
Kristy Freeman
Julie Frederickson

 Cathy Rosenquist
"C" Culpeper
Mary Anne Wright
Howard Marcus
Lill Caballero
Rita Berlin
Karin Anderson
Marilyn Daines

Those who attended the April 10th performance of "The Sedaka Show" starring Jim Van Slyke were served a special treat.

 Jim- you were amazing! Your performance reached out and touched all of us.
Thank you for sharing your gift!

Thanks to Dana and all of the Boosters for working so hard
 to make this event work so successful.

A special thank you goes out to C Culpepper who looked after the Van Slyke's 2 year old twin nephews in the HHS lobby so that Jim's brother and sister-in-law could enjoy the show.

District Assessment Results!

Congratulations go out to the singers of our three choirs who attended our District Assessment today at Madison HS. Herndon Vocal Jazz, Herndon Chorale and Herndon Madrigal singers all received straight superiors in performance and sight reading!

  Ms. Van Slyke is very proud of you!!

The Pyramid Concert performances were wonderful!

Thank you to our Pyramid partners-Armstrong, Clearview, Dranesville, Hutchison and Herndon Middle Choirs. You were amazing!  We can't wait until you join our ranks in a few years.

Thank you to all volunteers and our Chorale and Show Choir! You were terrific, too!

VMEA District Chorus Wrap Up

The Feb 10-12 VMEA District Chorus experience wrapped up yesterday with four performances by talented middle and high school students in front of a packed house of appreciative family and friends.  As Melanie Miller-Cvilikas commented, "It took a village" to do the myriad of tasks that needed to be accomplished to make this event successful. Thanks go out to everyone who worked so hard.  We heard many accolades from guest conductors and the high school and middle school choir directors who commented on what a well run and high quality event it was.

Thank you and congratulations to Ms. Van Slyke, Mr. Case, the event chairs listed below and all of the other adult and student volunteers.

If you would like to order a recording of the concert email Bandmanmusic@verizon.net

Dana Van Slyke High School District Host
Bryan Case
Herndon Middle School District Host
Melanie Miller-Cvilikas
Booster Event Chair
Amy Rosenquist
Student Volunteer Co-Coordinator
Andie Lytle Concessions Chair
Beth Czerwinski
HUMC Liaison
Cathy Harvey
Volunteer Chair
Christine Bobby
Student Volunteer Co-Coordinator
Courtney Nyren
Registration Chair
Emma Miller-Cvilikas
Student Volunteer Co-Coordinator
Janice Jewell
House Manager
Jerry Vandenberg (booster alum)
Stage Manager
Julie Frederickson
Hospitality Co-chair
Kara Rider HMS Liaison
Kathy Morgan Lunch for Students Chair
Kristy Freeman
Hospitality Co-chair
Lori Peterson (booster alum) Information/Admin Chair

Urgent Request

Dear Booster Parents:

There is an urgent need to have as many Virginia residents as possible contact our VA assemblymen/women prior to Jan.12. That is the date that they will be voting on the implementation of the Personal Finance Class as a requirement for all high school students. If this class is implemented as a full year requirement it will not allow students to take four years of an elective. This will devastate our fine arts programs.

Please click here to read information about the issue and spread the word by forwarding it to anyone else who would be concerned about this development. It is as simple as signing this online petition or sending a letter.The information and a sample letter that can be e-mailed to our delegates is found on the The Herndon Band boosters website. "Personal Finance vs. Band".The site also includes a list of delegates. 

Thanks, Dana

Nov 30 Choir Yearbook Photos-

During Seminar

Bring Performance Costumes!

Congratulations to our singers selected for District XII Choir! 

On Saturday, November 6, singers from high schools throughout VMEA's District XII auditioned for the District XII Chorus. From among the 14 high schools in the district, 40 Herndon Choir singers were selected, as well as 6 alternates.  Click here for the entire list!

Listed below are some cool honors earned by our singers!
  •  Jennifer Logan (Alto 1)  ranked 3rd in the district
  •  Danielle Maleski  (Alto 2) ranked 3rd in the district
  •  Cameron Copeland (Tenor 1) ranked 3rd in the district
  •  Matthew Frederickson (Tenor 1)  ranked 1st in the district
  •  Andy Roufi (Tenor 2) ranked 1st in the district
  •  Paul Morgan (Bass 2) ranked 3rd in the district
District XII Chorus event will be held February 10-12, at Herndon.  Congratulations to everyone who auditioned. We are very proud of you!   All-State Choir auditions will be held for juniors and seniors during the event, on February 10. Click here for sheet music and audition tracks. www.vcda.net

Sarah Freeman, Hannah Glass, and Ian Gildea

Enjoy the Virginia Music Educators' Association (VMEA) Conference and  State Honors Choir  in Norfolk Va. November 18-20.

Men's Choir Event October 28 Madison High School

The source for information below was a FCPS news release. Have fun gentleman Hornets!!

See Ms. Van Slyke for transportation and timing details.
"More than 400 middle and high school boys will travel to Madison High School on Thursday, October 28, for the Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS) Men’s Chorus Workshop, a day long event offering vocal music workshops and performances by professional vocal musicians. The event..is sponsored by the Fairfax County Choral Directors Association and the FCPS Fine Arts Office.

All singers will sing in a men’s ensemble during the event and will work with guest conductor Andrew Minear, director of choral activities at an Orlando, Fla., high school who has served as co-director of the Orlando Children’s Chorus and assistant music director of the Orlando Chorale.

Students will be able to participate in the following workshops:

A Capella 101, including the basics of contemporary a cappella, led by the Washington, D.C.-based a cappella group Cartoon Johnny

Meet the Pros, a session offering students the opportunity to hear professional male singers in each voice part perform in various genres... Students will be able to participate in a question and answer panel with the professionals.

Maestro, please!, a session offering junior varsity (grades 7-9) singers the chance to learn one musical selection that they will polish with the guest conductor and perform at the end of the day.

The day’s sessions will end with the boys sharing the music they have learned with each other in an informal performance setting. One of the guest groups will also perform to close out the day.

Note: Madison High School is located at 2500 James Madison Drive in Vienna. For more information, contact Rita Gigliotti atragigliotti@fcps.edu."

Scholarship Fall Fund Raising Dinner- all wrapped up!

We had about 200 in attendance and raised (after expenses) $1050.
Our scholarship fund is well on its way. Thanks to all who chopped, cooked, baked, set up, ate, served and cleaned up!

Thank you so much to all of the Boosters for their support of our Scholarship Fundraiser.  The food was delicious, the music fantastic and the hours of labor very much appreciated.  Thank you for a wonderful evening!  Julie Frederickson

Scholarship Fall Fund Raising  Pot Luck Dinner

October 13th HUMC 6:00-7:00

You should have received an email on October 1 from Cathy Harvey via Volunteer Spot. We are now using that site to coordinate volunteers. Simply log on to sign up to volunteer or provide food. Join us to eat, visit and  be entertained by our singers.The cost is $5 per person, $15 per family. If you did not get an email, check your junk/spam mailbox. If it is there, please approve the site. If it is not there, click on the link below, enter your email address and an email will be sent to you. If you still do not receive an email, please contact Cathy Harvey at csharvey@aol.com to make sure that she has your correct email address.  Please RSVP to Beth Czerwinski czerfamily@aol.com to let her know how many in your family will attend.

Click here for event details.

Student Information for Oct 13th

The following groups will be performing; Mads, Show, VJ, and Chorale. Wear your new gray HHS choir t-shirts and jeans. You are expected to arrive by 5:50.You will be able to eat dinner after your group(s) perform.

Congratulations from the Mayor!!

Dear Ms. Van Slyke - Congratulations to you and to seniors Sarah Freeman, Hannah Glass and Ian Gildea, who were selected to participate in this year’s State Honors Choir.  Please convey the Herndon Town Council’s congratulations to Sarah, Hannah and Ian, who should be very proud of their efforts and accomplishments.  This recognition is a reflection of their hard work and dedication to music and to Herndon High School.  We wish the students much success as they perform at the Virginia Music Educators' Association Conference in Norfolk on November 20 and as they continue to excel and achieve their goals.

Sincerely,  Steve DeBenedittis, Mayor Town of Herndon, Virginia

Congratulations to seniors Sarah Freeman-soprano, Hannah Glass-alto and Ian Gildea-bass!!!

They were selected to be a part of this year's State Honors Choir. Senior singers from around the state gathered at Longwood University in Farmville, Virginia, on Saturday, October 2, to audition in front of collegiate judges. The Virginia Music Educators' Association (VMEA) Conference will be held in Norfolk Va. November 18-20. As part of the VMEA conference, the selected students will participate in the Honors Choir event and perform in a concert on November 20.

Costume Pickup- Late Fees Apply  Don't Delay!

It was great seeing so many of you at the costume pick up and ice cream social. For those who did not make it please arrange to pick up your costume as quickly as possible. The longer you wait, the larger the late fee.

Vocal Jazz, Costume Pickup and Ice Cream Social

The following events have been scheduled to kick off the 2010-2011 school year.  We look forward to seeing you at one or more of them. They are great ways to meet your fellow singers!

Vocal Jazz Camp
August 31, September 1 and 2  9:00 am-12:00 noon each day

Costume Pickup-Choir Room
September 2, Thursday      6:00 pm-8:00 pm
September 3, Friday          10:00 am-12:30 pm
Bring a checkbook and pick up your costume on these dates. Late fees will apply after these dates. See Choir Handbook for details.

Ice Cream Social-Cafeteria  Eat, visit, buy spirit gear
September 3, Friday           1:00 pm- 2:00 pm Archive items will go here.


Dear Dana & the Herndon High School Choir:

On behalf of the citizens of the Town of Herndon and the 2010-2012 Herndon Town Council, I express our collective appreciation to you and the Herndon High School Choir for making time in the midst of summer vacations to sing the National Anthem at the swearing-in ceremony of the Council-Elect this past Tuesday. Our citizens have a strong sense of community not found in many places in the Northern Virginia area. Your personal involvement in our ceremony was sincerely appreciated and we were honored you were able to attend. Again, thank you for sharing in this memorable occasion.  Sincerely, Steve DeBenedittis Mayor

2010 Choral Awards Banquet: An Evening of Recognition

Congratulations to everyone for their musical success in 2010! Musicianship and the ideals of the performing arts were celebrated at the 2010 Herndon Choral Awards Ceremony on June 7. Participation awards were presented to all of the students in the Choir program. Students selected for District XII Chorus, VMEA Senior Honors Choir, and the All-Virginia Choir were individually recognized for their accomplishments.

Ms. Van Slyke's Senior Awards were presented to the following eight students:
  • Director's Awards: Sara Talebian and Joey Truncale
  • Rising Stars: Trevor Morgan and Mary Peterson
  • Outstanding Seniors: Shamelle Robinson and Clair Vogel
  • Service to the Arts: Callie Harman and Capri Lofaro
Scholarship Committee Chair Barbara Ramey presented the 2010 Herndon Choral Boosters Scholarships in the amount of $500 to the following four students: Trevor Morgan, Mary Peterson, Sara Talebian, and Joey Truncale. Members of the Voce Chamber Singers presented Mary Peterson with their first annual $500 scholarship, based on adjudication at the Pre-Festival Concert in March.

Ms. Van Slyke and Booster President Kathy Morgan expressed appreciation for and recognized the accomplishments of the Boosters Board of Directors, Executive Board, and Alumni parents. They thanked all of the Booster parents who volunteered their time and support of the Choir program. This will be Kathy Morgan's last year as president of the Boosters, and she welcomed incoming president Julie Frederickson.

The seniors presented Ms. Van Slyke with "the gift of their words and their love." Each senior picked a word that he or she felt best described Ms. Van Slyke, and the words were embroidered into a beautiful hand-made quilt. The students also explained the special significance of their word choice in a personal letter to Ms. Van Slyke. All of the letters were collected into a scrapbook that will be a treasured memento of the Class of 2010 for years to come.

The Choral Boosters parents presented Ms. Van Slyke with a Marantz professional CD recorder. This portable recorder will allow her to record audio directly onto CDs, a great tool and time-saver for recording audition music, classroom lessons, and concert rehearsals.

Ms. Van Slyke's gift to the 2010 seniors was a t-shirt with the words "We Will Rock You" emblazoned on the front. The seniors thanked her with a group hug. The students in each ensemble presented one another with the coveted Paper Plate Awards, a unique form of peer recognition. The seniors also willed important – and unusual – items and mementos to underclassmen in their ensembles.

Madrigals and Mads Alums: Is Your Costume Crowding Your Closet?

As you know, costumes are expensive and it takes a lot of time and work to create them. Please consider donating your unused Madrigals costume to the Choir program so that it can be used by future singers. Your donation would be tax deductible! Please contact Ms. Van Slyke if you would like to donate your costume.

FACE Advocacy Successful!

The FCPS Band and Strings programs have been preserved for the 2010-11 school year! Details here: www.faceadvocacy.org

All-Virginia Choir Includes Herndon's Voices!

Congratulations to our All-Virginia Choir singers! Following months of individual preparation and two intensive days of rehearsals with university conductors, four Herndon Choir students performed in the 2010 All-Virginia High School Choirs concert on Saturday, May 1, at the Sheraton Premiere at Tyson's Corner. The following Herndon Choir students participated:
WOMEN'S CHOIR: Hannah Glass ('11)
MIXED CHOIR: Trevor Morgan ('10), Ian Gildea ('11), and Andy Raoufi ('11)
The All-Virginia Mixed Choir was conducted by Dr. Z. Randall Stroope, Director of Vocal and Choral Studies at Oklahoma State University in Stillwater, Oklahoma. The All-Virginia Women's Choir was conducted by Charlotte Adams, founder and Principal Conductor of the Colorado Women's Chorale in Denver, Colorado.
Throughout the country, all-state choirs are considered one of the most prestigious and highest levels of achievement for high school choir students. In Virginia, just 24 students from each of the state's 16 districts are selected following a rigorous audition process. The Virginia Choral Directors Association of the Virginia Music Educators Association sponsors District and All-State Choir events.

Pyramid Choirs Take to the Stage!

On Tuesday, April 27, choirs from the HHS Pyramid schools — Armstrong, Clearview, Dranesville, and Hutchison elementary schools, and Herndon Middle School — joined the HHS Madrigals, Heatwave Show Choir, and Bennett Street Boys to participate in the 2010 Pyramid Concert.

Congratulations, Governor's School Invitees!

Herndon Choir's Ian Gildea has been selected to participate in the Vocal Music program of the 2010 Governor's School for the Visual and Performing Arts. This is an awesome accomplish-ment, as hundreds of students throughout the state apply and audition, but only about 50 students are selected. Ian, a baritone, sings in the Vocal Jazz, Madrigals, and Bennett Street Boys ensembles. He also has been selected for District XII Chorus for the past three years, and was selected this year for the 2010 All-Virginia Choir. Ian has performed in numerous musicals and drama productions at Herndon. Aaron Bentley also has been selected to participate in the Life Sciences & Medicine program. Aaron, a tenor, sings in the Madrigals and Bennett Street Boys ensembles, and he was selected for District XII Chorus for the past two years. Be sure to congratulate Ian and Aaron when you see them!

District XII Choir Festival Results

Congratulations to the Herndon Vocal Jazz, Herndon Chorale, and Madrigals. These three choirs received straight superior ratings at our district festival this past weekend at South Lakes High School. This state level adjudication is considered to be our SOL. We have been preparing this music since December and the results will be published in our state journal. I am very proud of their preparation and follow through. We were given wonderful comments by the collegiate adjudicators and Herndon High was noticed once again as having a very accomplished music department. I am very proud of these dedicated musicians.

A Musical Experience with Ithaca College Choir

On March 16, the Ithaca College Choir, now on its spring break tour and under the direction of Lawrence Doebler (above, far left), led Herndon Choir students in an afternoon workshop focusing on performance technique. Following a dinner hosted by the Choral Boosters (who also housed the choir members), the choir performed an evening concert entitled "Dreams" at Herndon United Methodist Church; the Madrigals also performed. As a highlight of the evening, Ithaca College Choir alumni, including Jim and Dana Van Slyke, performed with the choir. Herndon Choir alum Nate Tao currently is a member of the Ithaca Choir.

Pre-Festival Choir Concert Wows the Audience!

The Pre-Festival Choir Concert, held Tuesday, March 9, 2010, included performances by all Herndon High School choirs, as well as the Herndon Middle School Women's Chorale, Advanced Women's Choir, and Men's Choir. The concert included a performance by Voce Scholarship Award finalist Mary Peterson.

Herndon Choir and Drama Spring Trip to New York City

The Herndon Choir and Drama Spring Trip to New York City (March 4 through 6, 2010) featured three Broadway shows: Billy Elliott, The Glass Menagerie, and Mary Poppins; a musical performance at St. John the Divine gothic cathedral; a Camp Broadway Workshop; and shopping and sightseeing.


Congratulations to the seven Herndon singers who were acknowledged at the All-Virginia Choir auditions on Feb. 25. We had four singers selected to All-State and three alternates. This is the second highest amount in our district! All-State Choir will be held April 29 - May 1 at Tysons Corner. Herndon's All-State Choir delegates:
  • Hannah Glass - Alto - Junior
  • Trevor Morgan - Tenor - Senior
  • Andy Raoufi - Tenor - Junior
  • Ian Gildea - Bass - Junior
Mary Peterson - Soprano - Senior
Capri Lofaro - Alto - Senior
Dimitri Gann - Baritone - Senior

District XII Chorus Audition Results

On Saturday, November 7, singers from high schools throughout VMEA's District XII auditioned for the District XII Chorus. From among the 14 high schools in the district, 50 Herndon Choir singers were selected, as well as 5 alternates.

Listed below are some cool honors earned by our singers!
  • Mary Peterson (Soprano 2) ranked #2 in the district
  • Hannah Glass (Alto 1) ranked #1 in the district
  • Sara Talebian (Alto 1) ranked #2 in the district
  • Joey Truncale (Tenor 1) ranked #1 in the district
  • Andy Raoufi (Tenor 2) ranked #1 in the district
District XII Chorus will be held February 11–13, 2010, at Oakton High School. All-State Choir auditions will be held for juniors and seniors during the event, on February 11. Congratulations to everyone who auditioned. I am very proud of you!

Ms. Van Slyke Shares Success with Special Ed in Choral Program

"I ask myself at the start of school year how I will make this experience legitimate for all and have high expectations for everyone." –Dana Van Slyke

Ms. Van Slyke was interviewed recently for a series of articles published on the National Association for Music Education (MENC) website. The three-part series, "Success with Special Learners," addresses the inclusion of special education students in the choral music classroom:

Part 1: One Member's Tale
Part 2: Going with the Flow
Part 3: The Bigger Picture and Purpose

All articles: http://www.menc.org/v/chorus/success-with-special-learners-going-with-the-flow
The articles were written by Sue Rarus and published on the MENC website on Oct. 7, 14, and 21, 2009.

State Honors Choir Audition Results

Congratulations to seniors Sara Talebian, Joey Truncale, and Clair Vogel for being selected to this year's State Honors Choir. Senior singers from around the state gathered at Longwood University in Farmville, Virginia, on Saturday, October 3, to audition. Singers auditioned individually by voice part for collegiate judges. Also to be congratulated are Trevor Morgan and Mary Peterson, who placed as alternates. The Virginia Music Educators' Association (VMEA) Conference will be held at The Homestead in Hot Springs, Va., in November. As part of the VMEA conference, the selected students will participate in the Honors Choir event and perform in a concert. The conductor will be Dr. Craig Jessop of Utah State Univ. (formerly of Mormon Tabernacle Choir); Mr. Melvin Goodwyn of Woodbridge, Va., will accompany.

District XII Chorus Fee Reimbursement

Due to weather circumstances beyond our control, the District XII Chorus was canceled in February. While some expenses could not be reimbursed, we have received partial reimbursement for the Herndon High School participants. A reimbursement of $18.00 can be returned to you, or donated to the HHS Choir Department. If you would like a reimbursement, please notify our treasurer, Kara Rider, by April 10. Otherwise, we will post a donation roster on the Choir website which you may print as a receipt for your 2010 taxes (receipt will be posted after April 10). Fees will not be carried over to next year.

Cheesecake Sales Were Very Sweet!

Even though the weather didn't cooperate and delivery was postponed for a week (missing Valentine's Day), our cheesecake fundraiser was a great success!  Congratulations to Maegan Donaldson, our top seller, for crediting her account $136.00. The 60 students who sold cheesecakes were able to credit their individual chorus/spring trip accounts anywhere from $4.00 to $136.00. A total of $1616.00 was applied to student accounts. This was a huge increase over last year's profit. Many thanks to Ms. Van Slyke for running things so smoothly from her end. Thanks to Nina Falci and Lori Peterson for keeping you all so informed through e-mails and the web. Sorting and packing the individual orders would not have been done without the help of Kathy Morgan, Kristy Freeman, Julie Frederickson, Rita Ahearn, Ann Vandenberg, and Gillian Gaver. We do look forward to working with everyone next year! —Patty Shaffer and Beth Czerwinski


Due to the weather-related school closings, Voce has extended the application postmark deadline to Monday, Feb. 22. Voce invites all students majoring in music with a voice emphasis (including musical theater majors) to apply for the 2010 Voce Chamber Singers Scholarship Award. Each applicant must prepare an "Art Song" to sing at the March 9 choir concert. Contact Voce Executive Director Joan Winter Skerritt if you have questions.


Cheesecakes will be delivered and available for pickup on Thursday, Feb. 18.Students may pick up cheesecake orders between 2:10 and 2:30 p.m. in the Choir Classroom. If a parent wants to pick up cheesecakes before the end of school, they will be available beginning at 1:00 p.m. in the Chorus Classroom. If the student has plans to stay after school on Thursday for a school activity or help with a teacher, please contact Beth Czerwinski to work out a pickup time. We need a few more parents to volunteer to sort and distribute (1:00 to 2:30). Please e-mail Beth Czerwinski if you can assist. Be sure to deliver cheesecakes to your customers right away or keep in a freezer or refrigerator until they can be delivered.


In an effort to be proactive and fair to all involved, and in the interest of safety, the difficult decision has been made to cancel the District XII Chorus event. The event will NOT be rescheduled. All students who earned the privilege of participation will still receive their medals and the honor of knowing that they were to be part of this event. All-State auditions WILL be rescheduled. Please stay tuned for the date, place, and time. Information will be released as soon as possible. Students' lunch payments will be refunded.


Special thanks go to Maurean Truncale for all of her efforts organizing the sale, as well as her extra dedication to fulfilling orders. Maurean has provided 3 years of top-notch service on this fundraiser. She did an outstanding job, and those kids who needed the opportunity to sell, were able to do so! Thank you, Maurean!!

Herndon Madrigals Participate in University of Maryland Choir Invitational

On Wednesday, Nov. 11, the Madrigals traveled to the University of Maryland Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center to participate in their annual choir invitational. Herndon and Fairfax high schools attended from Virginia, and seven high school choirs attended from Maryland.  Edward Maclary, Director of Choral Activities at UM, worked throughout the day with the high school choirs on three pieces: Verbum caro factum est (Hassler); "Concord," from Choral Dances from Gloriana (Britten), and Kalinda (Guillaume). The event culminated in an evening concert in the state-of-the-art Dekelboum Concert Hall. Each high school choir performed one song from their repertoire. The UM Chamber Singers and the University Chorale also performed, then all the high school and university choirs combined on stage to perform the three selections they had studied during the day. The invitational was an exciting opportunity for the Madrigals to collaborate with and perform for other advanced high school choirs, as well as college-level singers and clinicians, in an inspiring day of music making.

Broadway Cabaret Auditions November 2!

Everyone at Herndon is welcome to audition for the 2010 Broadway Cabaret. Performances will be on January 28 and 30, 2010. Here is what you need to know for the auditions:

  • Auditions are Monday, November 2, in the Choir Room. This is a teacher workday.
  • Sign up for a time slot by Friday, October 30. Sign-up sheets are posted outside the Choir Room.
  • Prepare a 1½ minute excerpt of a musical theatre or Disney song.
  • Bring the sheet music, your iPod, or an accompaniment tape or CD to the audition.
  • You may dress in costume if you wish, and add in staging if so desired.

Relax, have fun, and break a leg!

A NOTE ABOUT REHEARSALS: Please make note of the following rehearsal dates:

Check to make sure you are available on these days before auditioning. Conflict sheets will be collected from the cast, and the rehearsal schedule will then be made for after school throughout the months of November, December, and January.

Songwriters Showcase at the Smithsonian

Are you interested in songwriting? If so, you might be interested in attending the Songwriters Showcase at the Smithsonian: Tuesday, October 27, at 7:00 p.m. at the Natural History Museum. There are some free student tickets available.Parents will have to purchase a ticket if they go. This event will showcase the winners of a songwriting contest that included over 250 applications. There are 12 winners, including four Young Artists (students), two of which are from Fairfax County. The event also features Lamont Dozier, legendary Motown songwriter, who will talk about songwriting.

Spring Trip Sign-Up This Week!

Sign-up days for the Choir and Theater Spring Trip to New York City (Thursday, March 4, through Saturday, March 6) are as follows. All forms must be completed and turned in with the $200 deposit.

SENIORS:  Thursday and Friday, October 15 and 16 (give to Ms. Van Slyke or Ms. Dillard)

ALL STUDENTS:  Friday, October 16 (give to Ms. Ramey in the Choir Classroom immediately after school)


Saturday, September 19
Sunoco, 12191 Sunset Hills Road, Reston, VA (near the Reston Target)
Rain date: September 26
You'll have fun working and meeting friends old and new! The schedule is as follows:
9:00 – 11:00 a.m.  Concert Choir | 11:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.  Herndon Chorale
1:00 – 3:00 p.m.  Vocal Jazz & Madrigals
| 3:00 – 5:00 p.m. Show Choir
Please bring your old rags and a bucket and we'll have a great time!

Show Choir Student Directors Named

Congratulations to the 2009-10 Show Choir student directors! Sara Talebian, Callie Harman, Erika Rodakowski, Rachel Wallis, Katie Vogt, Dimitri Gann

Volunteers Made Costume Pickup and Ice Cream Social Successful!

We had a great turnout for our costume pickup last week. This effort was led by Terri and Melissa Miller, who are new as our Wardrobe Chairmen this year, and they are doing an excellent job. Thank you to all the volunteers who helped with the costume pickup and ice cream social!

Costume Pickup and Ice Cream Social

Costume Pickup: Thursday, Sept. 3, 6:00 - 8:00 p.m. / Friday, Sept. 4, 10:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Choir Classroom

Ice Cream Social: Friday, Sept. 4, 1:00–2:00 p.m., HHS Cafeteria

All choir students in Madrigals, Vocal Jazz, Herndon Chorale, and Show Choir should pick up their choir costumes BEFORE school starts. An annual costume rental fee is due at pickup. Students in more than one ensemble will have a fee for each ensemble. Pick up early to save money! Fees are as follows. Print, fill out, and bring along the costume rental agreement form on page 7 of the Choir Handbook. Please make checks payable to "Herndon Choral Boosters."

  • $35.00 rental fee per ensemble: Payment and pickup on September 3 or 4
  • $40.00 rental fee per ensemble: Payment and pickup the week of September 7–11 ($5.00 late fee per ensemble)
  • $45.00 rental fee per ensemble: Payment and pickup the week of September 14–19 ($10.00 late fee per ensemble)
  • $50.00 rental fee per ensemble: Payment and pickup after September 19 ($15.00 late fee per ensemble)

Concert Choir students only: Concert Choir students may pick up their costumes before school on September 3 and 4 or during class until September 19 for a fee of $35.00. After September 19, an additional $15.00 late fee will be assessed.

2009-2010 Choir Handbook Now Available

Get a head start on filling out all those beginning-of-the-year forms! Download the Choir Handbook, and print and fill out the three forms listed below:

  1. Costume rental agreement form (page 7).
  2. Student response form for the HHS honor code (page 4).
  3. Parent/guardian contact information form (page 10).

The costume rental form will be turned in when you pick up your costumes (see above), and the other two forms are due to Ms. Van Slyke by Friday, September 11.


How Children, Adults, and Communities Benefit from Choruses: The 2009 Chorus Impact Study

Educators Say that Singing in a Choir Can Enhance Academic Success and Social Development in Students

According to a new study by Chorus America, children who sing in choruses have greater academic success and more advanced social skills than children who don’t sing, as reported by large majorities of both parents and educators surveyed for the study. Additionally, both parents and educators (from every discipline) attribute a significant part of a child’s academic success to singing in a choir. Click here to visit the Chorus America website (http://www.chorusamerica.org/about_choralsinging.cfm) for more information and the study results.

Why Music Matters

I’m not an entertainer; I’m a lot closer to a paramedic, a firefighter, a rescue worker . . . someone who works with our insides to see if they get things to line up, to see if we can come into harmony with ourselves and be healthy and happy and well.

Dr. Karl Paulnack said these words in a welcome speech to incoming freshman in 2004 at Boston Conservatory, where he is director of the music division. In this inspirational speech, Paulnack explores what music means to us and why it is important in our lives. Click here to read the transcript: http://www.symphonymusicians.com/WelcomeAddressbyKarlPaulnack/tabid/87/Default.aspx.

Paulnack, also a world-renowned pianist and performer, was a professor on the faculty of Ithaca College when Dana and Jim Van Slyke attended.

Chorale Welcomes HMS Choir Singers

Welcome to the following Herndon Middle School Select Women's Choir students who have been accepted into the Women's Chorale for the 2009-10 school year: Sydney Chervenic, Amy Freeman, Cynthia Kim, and Megan Overton. The following HMS students also will be joining Women's Chorale: Kelsey Anies, Amanda Harvey, and Jessica Homet. Congratulations, and we look forward to singing with you next year!

A Thank You . . .

I can’t express enough how appreciative I am for all of the support that the HHS Choral Boosters have given to our program this year. Kathy Morgan is an invaluable leader of our organization. Through her leadership we have welcomed so many new parents into our group and developed so many creative ways to support the kids in their music.

I need to say a few extra thank yous that I did not get to include at our awards banquet. Thank you Lori Peterson for your hours of work on our website and anything computer generated! Thank you Nina Falci and Mary Glenn Mancini for your clerical assistance and time with volunteers. Thank you Kristy Freeman and Julie Frederickson for anything having to do with food. Thank you Melanie Miller-Cvilikas for all of the photo organization and for the time planning our VMEA trip. Thank you to Michelle Tierney for the wonderful Banquet and to Chelle Youmans for the amazing VA Beach trip! Thank you to Barb Ramey and her committee for the new scholarship opportunities! Thank you to Kara Rider for tracking the finances, to Janice Jewell for organizing ushers and running the VHS camcorder at each concert, to Peggy Merryman for arranging for class T-shirts and spirit stickers, to Bonnie Hagstrom for managing the flower sales, and to all of the VA and VMEA Trip chaperones.

Thank you to the alum parents, Sue Gattoni, Kathy Dunlap, and Anne Vandenberg for our costume assistance and Jerry Vandenberg for all his time doing stage and sound set ups for our department and at times band, orchestra, guitar, and theatre.

A big thank you to my husband Jim and to Patrick Elliott for all of their time working with our students this year. And special thanks to my Fine Arts Colleagues, especially Zoe Dillard and our Administrator Jim Hannon for all of their support of the choir students this year.

Thank you to all of the families for your generous gift of the video camera. I will now be able to give instant feedback to my students and will enjoy documenting things at school and home. Thank you so much for your sincere support. I am truly overwhelmed by your generosity. I feel very lucky to have the job that I have, and to have the help of so many is truly special. --Sincerely, Dana Van Slyke

Scholarship Recipients Announced

Congratulations to the Class of 2009 Herndon High School Choral Boosters Scholarship Award winners:

Sonya Frostad, Josh Hagstrom, Lauren Hickman, Kate Merryman, Maggie Osburn.

The scholarship awards were presented at the 2009 Choral Awards Banquet on June 4. This is the first year the Choral Boosters have awarded scholarships to senior choir students. The scholarships are funded by student fundraising and parent donations to the Choral Boosters organization.

Many thanks to Barbara Ramey and the HHS Choral Boosters Scholarship Committee for administering the scholarship application and selection process.

2009 Senior Awards Presented

Ms. Van Slyke presented six Senior Awards at the Choral Awards Banquet on June 4. These annual awards acknowledge exceptional musical study, performance, ensemble participation, and leadership in the Herndon Choir program.

Outstanding Seniors: Loren Collado, Kat Miller-Cvilikas, Maggie Osburn
Rising Star Award: Molly Bouffard, Kate Merryman
Director's Award: Josh Hagstrom

Thank You, Banquet Organizers, Gift Contributors

A big thank you goes to Michelle Tierney for organizing the Choral Awards Banquet. Thanks also to all of the Booster parents who helped to prepare, serve, and clean up at this wonderful event.

Thank you to the senior parents and all other Choral Booster families and students who contributed to Ms. Van Slyke's group gift. Because of their support, we were able to purchase a digital video recorder, a wide-angle lens, an extra battery, a tripod, a storage bag, an extra memory card, and a $100 iTunes card. Thanks to all who made this wonderful gift possible. Ms. Van Slyke can use it in the classroom, as well as on the soccer field or football field with her boys!

"For Men Only" Retires Name, Improves Appropriateness

By Official Proclamation at the 2009 Choral Awards Banquet, the men's ensemble will henceforth be named " The Bennett Street Boys "

Standing Ovation for Pops Concert

Before a packed audience of parents, friends, family, and alumni, Herndon Choir students shared their artistic interpretation of this year's theme, "Love Is All You Need." The program included 39 musical numbers performed by all six choirs, as well as "spotlight" solos and ensembles by graduating seniors.

The Pops Concert, the final concert of the year, features musical favorites selected and choreographed by the choir students themselves. Last night, singers, dancers, and guest musicians from Herndon Guitar and Herndon Band took to the stage to perform popular music from across the decades. Colorful costumes, energetic dance routines, and contemporary musical arrangements showed off the talents and love for music that the students share.

A highlight of the concert was a solo performance by Jim Van Slyke of "Solitaire," a selection from his one-man Broadway event, "The Sedaka Show". The Pops Concert finale number was "Love Is All You Need," a medley of Beatles favorites. The concert concluded with "I Will Remember You," the traditional end-of-year song that welcomes back choir alumni, offers good-bye wishes to graduating seniors, and honors choral director Dana Van Slyke.

Herndon Choir Rocked at All-State!

Congratulations to our All-Virginia Choir singers! Following months of individual preparation and two intensive days of rehearsals with university conductors, five Herndon Choir students performed in the 2009 All-Virginia High School Choirs concert on Saturday, April 25, at Massaponax High School in Fredericksburg. Throughout the country, all-state choirs are considered one of the most prestigious and highest levels of achievement for high school choir students. In Virginia, just 24 students from each of the state's 16 districts are selected following a rigorous audition process. More than 380 students in two choirs participated in the 2009 All-Virginia Choir event. Herndon Choir took five of these spots.

The following students participated: WOMEN'S CHOIR: Kat Miller-Cvilikas ('09)

MIXED CHOIR: Josh Hagstrom ('09), Nathan Williams ('09), Mary Peterson ('10), and Trevor Morgan ('10) [alternate - Joey Truncale ('10)]

The All-Virginia Mixed Choir was conducted by Dr. Charles Robinson, Professor of Choral/Music Education at the University of Missouri Kansas City, Conservatory of Music and Dance; the choir was accompanied by Melvin Goodwin of Woodbridge, Va. The All-Virginia Women's Choir was conducted by Dr. David Brunner, Professor of Music, Director of Choral Activities at the University of Central Florida Department of Music, Orlando; the choir was accompanied by Laura Edelbrock of Alexandria, Va. Choral directors from high schools throughout the state accompanied their students to Fredericksburg. The Virginia Choral Directors Association of the Virginia Music Educators Association sponsors District and All-State Choir events.

The repertoire for both choirs featured classical, contemporary, and traditional music from around the world. The Women's Choir was privileged to perform three original compositions by their conductor, David Brunner. A highlight of the concert was a solo by our own Josh Hagstrom during the final song, "If You Believe in Music." Josh rocked the house with his soulful vocals, and brought the audience to their feet at the end of the piece!

Herndon Choirs Earn High Marks at Fiesta-Val

Congratulations go out to the choir students who attended our choir trip in Virginia Beach last weekend, April 16-18.

We had six choirs participate in the Fiesta-Val music festival. The Herndon Chorale, Madrigals, Show Choir, Concert Choir, and Vocal Jazz all received ratings of Superior, and our Men's Choir received a rating of Excellent! The Concert Choir also won the Best Overall Concert Choir of the festival.

Along with the ensemble achievements, we also had awards given to various soloists. Josh Hagstrom won two solo trophies for Madrigals and Men's Choir. Sarah Price was recognized for her Vocal Jazz solo. Joey Truncale was recognized for his Men's Choir solo. Chanel Parks was given a trophy for her outstanding French horn solo in our women's choir piece.

The students were complimented for their demeanor on and off the stage everyplace that we went. They truly represented Herndon with pride!

Be sure to visit the Guitar website for the Guitar 3 ensemble's Fiesta-Val results.

District XII Choral Festival Results

On March 21, the Herndon Madrigal Singers and the Herndon Chorale sang for District XII adjudication at Chantilly High School. Both groups were honored by earning straight superior ratings from all judges! Congratulations to those students for their hard work and dedication to their music!

Go Stinger Singers!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Herndon Choir Students Join the Cast of "Grease"

Nearly 20 Herndon Choir students will perform in the Herndon Drama Summer Musical Theatre Experience production of Grease! Following rehearsals throughout July, performances will be on Thursday, July 30, Friday, July 31, and Saturday, August 1, at 7:30 p.m. at the high school. Visit the Herndon Drama website for the cast list and updates.

The History Boys Features Herndon Students

The Elden Street Players' newest show, The History Boys, features Herndon students Nathan Williams and Matt Jackson. The show opened June 5, with 10 shows in the month of June!

Choral Awards Banquet — Thurs., June 4

HHS Cafeteria
Dinner: 6:30–7:15 p.m., Awards: 7:30–9:30 p.m.

All Herndon Choir students and their families and friends are invited to celebrate another great year of music-making! During this evening of beach-themed fun and food, we'll pay homage to our seniors, give participation awards, and enjoy a delicious barbeque meal. And you won't want to miss the "Paper Plate Awards."

A special feature of the evening will be a retrospective slide show prepared by senior Kat Miller-Cvilikas.

The banquet includes a catered barbeque dinner ($8.00 per person, $25.00 for a family, kids 3 and under free) and an awards ceremony. Reservations are required for dinner. The awards ceremony is free. You are welcome to attend the dinner and awards, or just the awards. Dinner will be served from 6:30 to 7:15 p.m.; the awards ceremony begins at 7:30 and will conclude around 9:30 p.m.

Pops Concert: "Love Is All You Need"

Tuesday, May 19  •  7:00 p.m.  •  HHS Auditorium

This final concert of the year — and the last concert as an HHS student for graduating seniors — will feature solos, duets, and performances by all Choir ensembles. You'll enjoy music from across the decades, including dance numbers choreographed by the students themselves! The program finale will be a groovy Beatles medley, "Love Is All You Need."

Flowers, concessions, and Choir spirit gear will be available. You can also make dinner reservations for the Choral Awards Banquet.

Shepherd University Choir to Visit March 30

Singers from Shepherd University, from nearby Shepherdstown, West Virginia, will visit during the school day on Monday, March 30. Visit their Music Department website: www.shepherd.edu/musicweb/

SATURDAY NIGHT: Teen Talent Open Mic at ArtSpace Herndon

Saturday, March 28, 7:00 - 9:00 p.m., ArtSpace Herndon, 750 Center Street, Herndon

This is a great opportunity for artists to perform in front of a live and encouraging audience! All types of talent and genres are appreciated. Mics, keyboard, sound system, and hookups provided. Cover charge is $3.00 per person. Even if you're not ready to perform, come out and support your fellow performers. This will be a monthly venue, so your chance will come! Dates for April, May, and June are being scheduled and will be announced.

Thank You, Choral Boosters!

The HHS Choral Boosters would like to say THANKS to...

  • Jim Van Slyke for an excellent presentation on the educational and professional options for students interested in music and musical theater.
  • Beth Czerwinski and Patti Shaffer for managing the 2009 Cheesecake fundraiser. We couldn't do it without you!
  • Evi Hickman and Nina Joyce for hosting the 2009 Choral Booster Social. It was a lovely event and a most enjoyable evening!
  • Julie Frederickson and Kristi Freeman for organizing breakfast for 60 Susquehanna College Choir Members and pulling it off on March 2, a morning when the schools were closed for snow. A special thanks goes to Dave Frederickson who jumped in his truck and drove in the deep snow to pick up 5 dozen hot bagels for the Susquehanna singers, and delivered all of the food to a last minute alternative location. Your efforts were truly heroic!

On behalf of the HHS Choral Boosters, I would like to say thanks to all who support the HHS choir program in any way. Every volunteer makes such a difference and we appreciate your time, talents and service. — Kathy Morgan, President, HHS Choral Boosters

Upcoming Drama Productions

The Grand Summer Musical Theatre Experience: Grease! Herndon Drama announces the new Summer Musical Theatre Experience at Herndon! Open to rising 7th graders through '09 graduates, we're emulating the very successful Summer Stage at Westfield.The first year's production will be Grease!

Arsenic and Old Lace: Herndon Drama will presents its Mainstage production of Arsenic and Old Lace. Show dates are April 30, May 1, and May 2 at 7:30 p.m. at Herndon High School.

2008-09 Herndon Choir Directory Now Available

The first edition of the Herndon Choir Directory has been published. A hearty thank you goes to
Nina Falci, volunteer coordinator for the Herndon Choral Boosters, for collecting contact information for all Herndon Choir students and parents — not an easy task! — as well as creating and producing the directory. Directories will be distributed in class.


Herndon Chorale and Madrigals only, Saturday, March 21 • Chantilly High School

Warm-up – 9:30 a.m.; Performance – 10:00; Sight-reading – 10:25
Chorale: Warm-up – 10:50 a.m.; Performance – 11:20; Sight-reading – 11:45

Jim Van Slyke Stars in "The Sedaka Show"

Herndon's Vocal Jazz Clinician Jim Van Slyke celebrates Cabaret Month and the music of pop icon Neil Sedaka. In a rare New York appearance, Jim lends his beautiful voice and charm to the intimate melodies of Neil Sedaka in his latest project, "The Sedaka Show."

Directed by Tony-nominated singer/actor Brian Lane Green with music direction by MAC Nominee/Backstage Bistro Award Winner Tim DiPasqua, this tour de force trio have created a magnificent evening of Neil Sedaka favorites, lost gems, and a few surprises!

"The Sedaka Show" made its premiere at The Laurie Beechman Theatre last weekend. Reviews were excellent! The final two performances are this weekend: Saturday, March 14, at 4:00 p.m.; and Sunday, March 15, at 7:00 p.m.

MSUM Concert Choir to Perform March 15

Dr. Paul Nesheim — who was the guest conductor for the District XII Chorus Mixed Choir this past February — will be bringing his college choir, the Minnesota State University Moorhead Concert Choir, to the D.C. area this month. All choir students are invited to attend a concert they will perform locally, in Sterling. More information will be provided; concert details are as follows: Sunday, March 15, 2009, 3:00 p.m., Community Lutheran Church, 21014 Whitfield Place, Sterling, VA. The church is located in the Cascades Town Center, adjacent to the Eastern Loudoun Regional Library. Visit the MSUM Music Department website at: www.mnstate.edu/music

Drama Productions

Children Of Eden — March 13–15: Zoe Dillard is directing Westfield, Oakton, and Herndon high school students, as well as quite a few students from area middle schools, in a production of Children Of Eden at Centreville Presbyterian Church this weekend, March 13–15. If you want to see how well a church pseudo-stage can be transformed, and hear some great Schwartz music, it's worth the trip.

Cheesecake Sales Were Very Sweet!

Our cheesecake fundraiser was a great success! Many thanks to Ms. Van Slyke for running things so smoothly from her end. The 47 students who sold cheesecakes were able to credit their individual chorus/spring trip accounts anywhere from $3.80 to $65.20. A total of $967.70 was applied to student accounts. Thanks to Nina Falci, Volunteer Coordinator, for filling our volunteer slots.  Kathy Morgan, Melanie Miller-Cvilikas, Kristy Freeman, Nina Joyce, Mary Glenn Mancini, Mary Catherine Williams, Bonnie Hagstrom, Peggy Merryman, and Cheryl Rodakowski all helped organize the cheesecakes for student pick-up.  Thanks to them, the job was easily completed, and the cheesecakes picked up with no problems.  We look forward to working with everyone again, except, of course, our fabulous senior parents who will be gone (and missed) next year!  — Patty Shaffer and Beth Czerwinski

All-Virginia Choir Audition Results

Congratulations to the following students for auditioning and being selected for the 2009 All-Virginia Choir:

SENIORS:  Kat Miller-Cvilikas, Josh Hagstrom, and Nathan Williams
JUNIORS: Mary Peterson and Trevor Morgan

Junior Joey Truncale was also selected as an alternate. They only have 24 spots available in our district, and Herndon Choir took 5 of those spots! These students will participate in the state festival April 23–25 at Massaponax High School in Fredericksburg, VA. Please congratulate them when you see them! CONDUCTORS: The All-Virginia SATB Choir will be conducted by Dr. Charles Robinson, Professor of Choral/Music Education at the University of Missouri Kansas City, Conservatory of Music and Dance (accompanist is Melvin Goodwin of Woodbridge, Va.). The SSAA Choir will be conducted by Dr. David Brunner, Professor of Music, Director of Choral Activities at the University of Central Florida Department of Music, Orlando (accompanist is Laura Edelbrock of Alexandria, Va.).

Cheesecake Pickup Feb. 11

There have been inquiries about the peanut butter used in the Sweetz PB Fudge Cheesecake. They do not use peanut paste; the peanut butter is name-brand jarred peanut butter.

Thank you to all who participated in the Sweetz Cheesecake Fundraiser. Students may pick up cheesecake orders at 2:10 p.m. in the Choir Classroom. Be sure to deliver cheesecakes to your customers right away or keep in a freezer or refrigerator until they can be delivered.

Jim Van Slyke Speaks at Feb. 9 Booster Meeting

The Herndon Choral Boosters are excited to have guest clinician Jim Van Slyke join us for a presentation at the Monday, February 9, meeting. Mr. Van Slyke will provide information for parents and students about identifying college music programs — classical and musical theater; determining a good college match for music students; and identifying sustainable career opportunities in the field of music beyond Broadway and American Idol. The February 9 meeting starts at 7:00 p.m. in the Choir Classroom. This is a general parents meeting; however, students are invited and encouraged to attend. In addition to the presentation by Mr. Van Slyke, Dana Van Slyke will participate in a question-and-answer session addressing expressed topics of interest. Please bring your questions and join us! Light refreshments will be served. 

Ithacappella Visits January 12

On January 12, Ithacappella, Ithaca College's all-male collegiate a cappella ensemble, held an in-school workshop with music students during the school day and performed a concert benefiting the Herndon Choral Boosters that evening. 

White House Ornament Fundraiser Results

The Herndon Choral Boosters want to express their deepest appreciation for the hard work and dedication of parent volunteer Maurean Truncale for successfully managing the 2008 White House ornament fundraiser. Thanks to her tireless efforts, 700 ornaments were sold! Maurean's efforts helped support not only the Choir program at HHS but also the students who are trying to raise money for the spring trip.

You are greatly appreciated, Maurean! Thanks also to Barb and Tim Ramey for handling eBay sales of previous years' ornaments. A small number of 2003 and 2005 White House ornaments are still available. 

Fall 2008 Herndon Pyramid Choir Concert

Tuesday, November 25, 7:00–8:30 p.m.

Our 4th Annual Pyramid Concert! Choirs from Clearview, Hutchison, and Dranesville elementary schools, Herndon Middle School, and Herndon High School performed. The program finale was performed by all choirs together — more than 500 students!

Congratulations to the HHS Vocal Jazz Ensemble!

The Vocal Jazz Ensemble was selected to perform at the 2008 Virginia Music Educators Association (VMEA) annual conference. They traveled to Hot Springs, Virginia, the weekend of November 20-22 for their performance at the Homestead Resort. This is a wonderful honor for the Vocal Jazz Ensemble. These talented singers were hard at work preparing for this performance since last summer. They performed seven jazz selections, including a premiere performance of Jay Althouse's arrangement of the Cole Porter standard, "Let's Do It." Congratulations to Choral Director Dana Van Slyke, Vocal Jazz Clinician Jim Van Slyke, and all of the ensemble members for this accomplishment!

Men's Workshop Chorus Held November 10

Congratulations to the men of the Herndon High School Choir who were selected to take part in the 2008 All-County Men's Workshop Chorus on November 10. The following men participated: Jared Ambrose, Aaron Bentley, Chris Czerwinski, Conor Daines, Timmy Eisnagle, Josh Hagstrom, Tom Lyver, Caz Miles, Andrew Redfern, James Snow, Brady Tierney, Andrew Vito. The day-long workshop was held at the Performing Arts Center at George Mason University. Eugene Rogers, Director of Choral Activities at Macalester College in St. Paul, Minnesota, was the guest conductor. The day culminated in an “Informance” — an informal performance/instruction session demonstrating what they learned during the day — for parents, family, and friends. The annual Men's Workshop Chorus is co-sponsored by the FCPS Fine Arts Office and the Fairfax County Choral Directors Association.

STUDENTS: Sell White House Ornaments and Earn $$for the Spring Choir Trip!

The annual White House ornament fundraiser is underway! The 2008 White House Benjamin Harrison Ornament (pictured at left) honors the 23rd president of the United States, President Benjamin Harrison (1833–1901). This ornament is a glimpse of the first Christmas tree ever to have been documented in The White House. White House ornaments are popular holiday gifts. Each ornament costs just $18.00. For each ornament they sell, students earn $3.00 credit toward their cost of the spring trip. A limited number of previous years' ornaments also are available for purchase.

District XII Chorus Audition Results

OCT. 28: On Saturday, October 25, singers from high schools throughout VMEA's District XII auditioned for the District XII Chorus. From among the 14 high schools in the district, 55 Herndon Choir singers were selected, as well as three alternates. Listed below are some cool honors earned by our singers!

  • Hannah Kwon is the #1 Soprano 2 in our district (SSA)!
  • Hannah Glass is the #1 Alto 1 in our district (SSA)!
  • Mary Peterson is the #3 Soprano 2 in our district (SATB)!
  • Joey Truncale is the #1 Tenor 1 in our district (SATB)!
  • Trevor Morgan and Josh Hagstrom are tied for the #2 Tenor 1 spot for our district (SATB)!
  • Ian Guildea is the #2 Bass 2 for our district (SATB)!

Congratulations to everyone who auditioned. I am very proud of you! –Ms. Van Slyke

Cabaret Auditions Coming November 4!

The 2009 Broadway Cabaret 2009 will be on January 22 and 24, 2009. Soon, we will be auditioning. Anyone at Herndon is welcome to audition. Here is what you need to know for the auditions.

Auditions are Tuesday, November 4, in the Choir Room. Sign up for a time slot by Friday, October 31. Prepare no more than a 1½ minute excerpt of a musical theatre or Disney song. Bring the sheet music or an accompaniment tape/CD to the audition. You may dress in costume if you wish, and add in staging if so desired. Relax, have fun, and break a leg!

A NOTE ABOUT REHEARSALS: Dress rehearsals are scheduled as follows:

January 10 and 17 (Saturdays) — 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
January 20 — During the day
January 21 — 5:30 to 9:30 p.m.

Check to make sure you are available on these days before auditioning. Conflict sheets will be collected from the cast, and the rehearsal schedule will then be made for after school throughout the months of November, December, and January.

District XII Chorus Audition

The audition piece is "He, Watching Over Israel" (Mendelssohn).

Saturday, October 25, 2008, Yorktown High School, 5201 North 28th Street, Arlington, VA 22207

You must provide your own transportation. Arrive 15 minutes before your assigned time. You will be called into the appropriate room. You will sight-sing and sing your audition piece for two judges. The judges will not see you while you sing. Students with the highest scores will be placed into this year's District choir. There are two choirs: one for 9th and 10th grade women, and one for 11th and 12th grade women and all of the men. If you are going to audition, please make sure that you are available for the District Chorus event dates.

State Honors Choir Results

OCT. 6: Congratulations to seniors Maggie Osburn and Josh Hagstrom for being selected to this year's State Honors Choir. All of the senior singers from around the state gathered at Longwood University in Farmville, Virginia, on Saturday, October 4. They auditioned individually for collegiate judges.

Josh is ranked as the highest scoring Tenor 1 in Virginia!  Maggie was ranked #2 in the state for Alto 2! Also to be congratulated is Kate Merryman, who placed as an alternate for Soprano 1. Josh and Maggie will attend the Virginia Music Educators' Conference in November to participate in the Honors Choir event.

Car wash kudos, from Booster President Kathy Morgan

I want to thank the volunteers who helped make Saturday's car wash a great success. We appreciate everyone who took part in pre-selling tickets, working at the car wash, and bringing their cars to be washed. I really appreciate everyone who pitched in. Thanks to Jim for making a much needed ice run, and Randy for getting the kids organized and keeping the cars moving for 4 solid hours. Maurean & Julie did a great job keeping kids on task and focused while they worked and played, and thanks to Melanie for keeping track of the tickets and the money, as well as providing some company for the many parents who stopped by and waited for cars to be washed. Finally, thanks to Kara who works behind the scenes to tally and total it all for us.

Workin' at the Car Wash: Students Raised $1,000 for Scholarship Fund

Dozens of Herndon Choir students turned out for the Car Wash Scholarship Fundraiser on Saturday, September 20, at the Herndon Exxon. The rags and machines were really humming as students washed nearly 90 cars. And the boss didn't mind that they acted the fool (check out the photos)!

Thank you to all of the students, parents, and patrons who made the fundraiser a success. Special thanks also to Herndon Exxon for hosting us. 

HHS Music Dept. receives VMEA Blue Ribbon School Award

The Herndon HS Music Department has been awarded the Blue Ribbon School Award  from the Virginia Music Educator's Association for our Superior Performing Ensembles. All sections of our department—Orchestra, Band, Choir, and Guitar—received Superior ratings at our festivals in the Spring of 07-08. We were sent a certificate that will be hanging in the main office.

Back to top >