Panel holds interviews for next year’s choir director

With the departure of current choir teacher Mr. John Varwig approaching soon, the school administration is already holding interviews with applicants for the 2011-2012 school year. The interviews were held in a conference room at school; selected staff and students were present throughout. There were four applicants interviewed. Two have follow-up interviews, according to junior Kyle Braden.

Assistant Principal Marletha Davis; Activities Director Scott Harris; Theatre Director Michelle Moll; Fine Arts Department Chair Amy Roessline; Howell’s Choir Director Karey Fitzpatrick, the mother of sophomore Katie Richards; and juniors Kyle Chumbley and Claire Henderson were all present during the interviewing process as well. They all were required to sign a waiver to keep the applicants information confidential. The interviews took place on Thursday, May 5 in one of the conference rooms at our school.

Braden was glad to be able to sit in during the interviews because he really enjoys being in Men’s Chamber Choir. By allowing students to provide input on the hiring process, he feels that administration is taking into consideration what type of choir director students are looking for.

“I thought it was a good experience [to sit in on the interviews]. I think that it’s good to have students’ opinions when it comes to picking teachers,” said Braden. “We need someone who can make others view the choir program as something serious.”

The interviewing panel took turns asking the interviewees questions throughout their interviews, said Braden. Braden feels that it will take the right type of person to replace Mr. Varwig because a lot of students respect him and will miss him. Mr. Varwig will be taking over as music director at his church after he retires.

“He’s not perfect, but he makes you feel like you’re not wasting time in his class,” said Braden. “He’s really good at piano and is willing to work one-on-one with his students. He’s really dedicated and you can tell he appreciates music.”