Musical traveling experience; Choir teacher warming up for singing tour


PHOTO CREDIT: Kimberly Edgar

Caption: Teacher Katelyn Hemling is preparing for a singing tour coming in October. Hemling had done minor traveling with a choir in her musical past.

KIMBERLY EDGAR , Entertainment Editor

  Music teacher Mrs. Katelyn Hemling will be traveling to Europe on Oct. 14 through Oct. 23 for a singing tour. According to Hemling, “the tour is a European tour with a group called Baltimore Choral Arts Society. Baltimore Choral Arts is an auditioned, local ensemble that performs regionally.” 

     Hemling found out about this tour through singing with Deer Creek Chorale. “Our director is a friend of the Baltimore Choral Arts Director, and so some members of Deer Creek auditioned and will be traveling with Choral Arts,” says Hemling. Hemling and the group will be performing with European Orchestras as well as performing with the Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra and the Vienna Singakademie, a well-established European group. 

     According to Hemling, they will perform under the direction of Marin Alsop. “Marin Alsop is the former conductor of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra  and one of the only, if not the only, woman to lead a major US Orchestra. She has always been a musical inspiration of mine and singing for her is hugely exciting.” 

     Hemling mentions that the singing tour will give her professional networking opportunities that she will take back with her. “In my undergraduate degree, I performed with choirs and loved it so much. I was fortunate to travel and record a lot and always loved the experience,” says Hemling. “I always talk about performance opportunities and experiences with my students, and when this tour came around I felt it would be the perfect opportunity to show students how teachers can still be active performers.” 

    The tour’s purpose is to “expand performers’ horizons, allow them a chance to get out of their comfort zones, see the world, learn new things about the craft, and sing for new people,” says Hemling. She recommends this experience to anyone because “tours like this don’t happen often and are incredible once in a lifetime learning experiences.” 

    The group will travel to Europe and will visit Vienna, Austria, Prague, Czech Republic, and Berlin, Germany. When Hemling was in college, she traveled frequently to Oxford University during the summer to perform with a choir. “We did this trip every year and while it was a tour of sorts, it was based in one location so going to countries like this is going to be new for me.” 

     The main piece the group will be performing is the Chichester Psalms by Leonard Bernstein, according to Hemling. “I am not sure of the exact reasoning behind the selection. However, Marin Alsop was a student of Bernstein, so singing it with someone who knew the composer so closely is really cool.” 

     Hemling is looking forward to this opportunity to branch outside of her comfort zone on a chance of a lifetime. “I am so thrilled to have this chance and to be able to go meet new people, learn from so many incredible people in my field, and bring all of that back to Hawks Choir,” says Hemling.“Being afforded opportunities like this helps me grow as an educator and become a better teacher for my students.”