Today was spent at the Aaron Copeland School of Music at Queens College. Following a quick warm up, the choir was escorted onto stage at the LeFrak Concert Hall where they performed four selections from the summer tour repertoire. The rest of the day was spent in workshops with clinicians and listening to other choirs perform. The boys ended the day back in the Times Square area with a little bit of souvenir shopping, dinner at Dallas BBQ, and celebrity spotting at Madame Tousseau's Wax Museum.
Downpour. A much needed morning downpour ended just in time to board the buses, and it brought with it a 15 degree drop in temperature and a cool breeze for most of the day. Light traffic had the choir arriving at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine early enough to enjoy a stroll around the block to Morningside Park and a quick visit to the Peace Fountain, located just beside the church. The choir was given a brief history and tour of the church and some time to explore in small groups. At 10:00am, the choir presented a 30 minute selection of pieces from the tour program. The boys were thrilled to see so many relatives and friends from near and far who had come to see them perform.
Following a quick lunch in small groups around Amsterdam Avenue, the choir boarded the coaches and headed to the September 11th Memorial and the One World Observatory in the Freedom Tower. It was a relatively clear day, and the view was amazing from 102 floors up.
Dinner at Bubba Gump Shrimp Co was followed by the amazing show, Wicked, at the Gershwin Theater on Broadway. There may have been a quiet chorus singing along to "For Good" :-) Whew! Now for some sleep.
One of the traditions of touring with the Chattanooga Boys Choir is the "evening meeting," typically in the lobby of a hotel at the end of the day. The events of the day are recounted, details for the following day discussed, and questions answered. This year there are 53 choristers on tour, a record number, with a typical roster closer to 35 choristers. A group of that size presents numerous challenges from requiring 2 coaches to not being able to cross the streets in NYC at one time. In the "evening meeting" on the first day of tour, chaperones had an opportunity to discuss any concerns they observed over the course of the day. Every single chaperone recounted comments they received or overheard on the bus, in the airport, in restaurants, on the hotel, and on the plane about how kind, thoughtful, and gentlemanly our choristers are. Parents of these young men, you should be so very proud of your sons. Alumni, you should be thrilled to know that your legacy is continuing. Chattanoogans, you should be proud of how these boys are representing your city.