CPSHS Choral Accomplishments

  • There are 5 choral groups at Como. 4 meet as classes during the school day for credit and there is one vocal jazz ensemble - Sound Reinforcement Vocal Jazz. Together,they have performed for VH1, the Saint Paul City Council, The Ordway Music Theatre's World Party, KTCA's News Night Minnesota, Boy Scouts Indianhead Council Annual Meeting, Saint Paul Public School's Volunteer Recognition Picnic, the Association of Community Education Administrators, in coffee houses, the inaugural event for the Center for Excellence in Children's Mental Health, as pre-concert entertainment for VocalEssence, at St. John's Episcopal and St. Patrick's Catholic Cathedrals in New York City, as cruise ship entertainment, and at the North Texas Jazz Festival. In February 2006, the members of the two select ensembles sang at the world famous Carnegie Hall in New York City in a performance of spirituals celebrating Black History Month with the New England Symphonic Ensemble under the direction of Lawrence Burnett. Singers from Concert Choir and Donna di Cantare will be returning to Carnegie Hall this November to perform the music of Dr. Patrick Liebergen under his direction.

    The Como Park choirs and Minnesota Chorale have had an extremely successful partnership since 1006, providing Chorale singers to work with and perform for the students and bringing the students to rehearsals and performances of the Chorale. In 2006-07, the partnership will gain added dimension by commissioning songs based on the stories of Habitat for Humanity home owners with text written by Como Park student writers.

    In 2002, a partnership was formed with VocalEssence, “Meet the Composer's” Cary John Franklin, Como Park High School, Minnetonka High School and Red Wing High School to provide commissioned works for those students and an opportunity for the students to work together on the Voices of Tomorrow choral festival. This concert took place in May, 2005 at Orchestra Hall, Minneapolis under the direction of Philip Brunelle. Read the review below for a better idea:

    Seen and Heard International Concert Review:
    "Each school presented three works, including one by Franklin. The Como Park High School Concert Choir made a striking beginning with a traditional Dona Nobis Pacem, here intoned slightly in the background, while one of the group's young men read a poem by Elizabeth Wright, “Do You Not Hear the Cries?” with sober conviction. The Como Park group spaced themselves apart onstage, a risky maneuver since it affects how well the singers can hear each other (and stay in tune), but I am pleased to report that they succeeded, and more so. Under the dedicated direction of Carole Whitney, these fine young musicians might have bettered some professional ensembles, and indeed, the same comment could apply to the other schools. Como Park finished with Kurt Bestor's moving Prayer of the Children and Franklin's Listen!, the latter with some intriguing chord progressions that distinguished all of his works."