Choir students sing to be heard

Vocal music programs making plans to become more visible


Choir director Elisabeth Baird gestures to the members of her third hour Treble Choir class. The choirs are making plans to make themselves visible this year, including singing during passing periods or pep assemblies.

FHC is full of groups and activities, but in the flurry of athletics and clubs, some are often forgotten.  The choir program, directed by Mrs. Elizabeth Baird, is full of hardworking students who simply want their voice to be heard.

There are five choir classes and three after school groups, meaning there is no shortage of singing at this school.  Mrs. Baird has been leading these students for four years, yet the school still hasn’t fully seen their potential.

“We sing the national anthem at the pep assembly and in the mornings and at the football games and at the basketball games, but that’s it,” Mrs. Baird said.  “And we are so much more than the national anthem.”

This year, the choir program is hoping to get a little more visibility.  Plans are in the making of singing other songs in the hallways during passing period or even at a pep assembly.  However, they are still working to create a good dynamic with the new group they have this year.

“Being a band person, as soon as you play a wrong note, you blame it on the horn.  Whereas if you sing a wrong note in choir, it’s you,” Mrs. Baird said.  “And so we really have to develop that sense of safety and that family, like it’s okay to screw up.”

Family is definitely a common theme throughout the choir program.  Despite not getting the recognition they necessarily wanted,  they still enjoy being together and being there for each other.

“[My favorite part about choir is] getting to do music, but also, everyone’s really nice to each other,” junior Elizabeth Eshenroder said. “We’re like a big family. I just love choir.”

For Mrs. Baird, losing her seniors last year was especially hard.  She started teaching at this school four years ago, so the class of 2015 had been her first group of freshmen.  She had watched them all grow up, and the program is now forced to adjust to choir without them.

“Last year we had really, really strong leaders,” Mrs. Baird said.  “They had a huge sense of ownership of the program, and this year’s seniors are still learning that now that that leadership is gone.”

While it’s definitely not as it was last year, the choir program still offers all the same opportunities.  It’s still just a room where people of all different walks of life can come and sing together.

“I see how many students are dealing with stress and anxiety and all that stuff in their daily life,” Mrs. Baird said.  “They can come here for an hour and make music.  My class is a little oasis away from the rest of that.”

When it comes down to it, choir is really just all about the music. Music is a universal language that touches everyone in some way, shape, or form, and the choir program at this school just reinforces that idea.

“It just strengthens my foundation on music,” sophomore Seth Ferrell said. “I had a passion for music, and choir lets me express it.”