San Marcos Choir Takes Chicago


Ms. Pantages

San Marcos choirs competed in Chicago.

On March fourteenth, fifty incredibly talented San Marcos students took the Windy City by storm, singing their way to success at the prestigious WorldStrides Festival of Gold competition. The most gifted choral and instrumental groups from all across the nation came to Chicago’s invitational competition to display their vocal skills and showcase their hard work from this year. In true Royal fashion, our San Marcos Madrigals and Enchanté came to win and received extremely high scores, both within the ninetieth percentile. 

The students spent the first day of the trip exploring the city of Chicago, visiting the iconic Bean and the zoo. Lots of time was also spent rehearsing with all of the other groups at the competition. San Marcos had two groups entered in the competition, the Madrigals and Enchanté. The two ensembles sang three additional songs with these other groups. They had the unique opportunity to work on these songs with two notable and widely recognized choral directors, Dr. Lynne Gackle and Dr. Anton Armstrong. Both San Marcos groups had the chance to show their competition sets to these directors and were given helpful feedback before the performance. Our San Marcos vocalists were honored to be able to work with and learn from such influential directors. 

The following day, the Madrigals and Enchanté each performed three pieces of music in the Chicago Concert Hall. These musical pieces came from a diverse variety of different time periods and genres. The tremendous amount of work that the San Marcos choral groups put into perfecting their craft throughout this year paid off, as  they both performed extremely well. Our Madrigals received the  highest score for an ensemble out of the entire competition, with an astonishing average score of 97.3. Enchanté stunned as well, scoring an average of 90. Our school’s talented vocalists certainly proved how hard work and dedication are the essential building blocks of success.

The Madrigals and Enchanté scored highly, crushing the competition. (Ms. Pantages)

The Madrigals and Enchanté also had the chance to watch other groups perform, and ended off the event by showcasing four other pieces in a choir of two hundred people, consisting of the other ensembles at the competition. 

When asked about her experience on the trip, Hannah Henderson, a junior and Madrigal at San Marcos said, “Both groups have worked really hard this year and I’m very happy with the outcome. Big thanks to Ms. Pantages for being a wonderful director!”

Amber Coltrin, a freshman member of Enchanté added, “It was an amazing experience and I learned so much about how to manage time and how to be professional.”

The achievements of our school’s vocal ensembles show first hand how teamwork and tenacity pay off. We cannot wait to see how our accomplished San Marcos vocalists will use their experiences in Chicago to grow and influence others in the future.