The right note: Silverton Friends of Music develops new children’s choir

November 2018 Posted in Community, Music & Band

By Melissa Wagoner

In August Sophia Wood posted on Facebook asking Silvertonians if they were interested in the creation of an elementary age children’s choir – and the results blew her away.

“I was in choir when I was a kid and I just thought it would be something to do,” she said. “A lot of people were interested.”

One of the multitudes who read the post was Sarah Weitzman – President of the non-profit group Silverton Friends of Music (SFOM) – who was also stunned by what she saw.

“We were like, ‘Wow, there are a lot of people commenting on this thread,” Weitzman said, who got the ball rolling at the next SFOM board meeting.

“We had a long discussion about what it means for us,” Weitzman explained. “We didn’t want to take away from anything the [school] district was already doing.”

SFOM was founded by Frank and Amanda Petrik in June 2016 to boost the music programs within the Silver Falls School District without detracting from what was already in place. Not only was an elementary-age choir program a need, but it was one SFOM could facilitate with the caveat that any child enrolled in the choir must also participate in the choir programs offered by his/her home school as well.

“We’re supportive of all the district’s music options but we’re supportive of Oregon Music Education Association criteria, which are one hour a week,” Weitzman said. “In our district we don’t have a lot of elementary music education.”

Once a course of action was decided upon, SFOM put the children’s choir together, hiring veteran choral director Julia Fabrizio to take the lead.

“We’re kind of in a place to make it whatever we want it to be,” Fabrizio said. “I’ve been doing a lot of elementary stuff recently and I really like that building a foundation.”

The SFOM Children’s Choir practices Thursday nights in the Trinity Lutheran Church in Silverton for children in kindergarten through eighth grade.

Weitzman said interested families can sign up for the winter session any time on the SFOM website at www.silvertonfriendsofmusic.org.

SFOM Children’s Choir

Registration open for winter semester (January through May).$100 registration fee per semester. Some financial aid available. www.silvertonfriendsofmusic.org

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