Choir travels to Italy for international competition



Ashley Lemke | Assistant News Co-Editor

The Buena Vista University (BVU) Choir will be traveling to Italy during spring break this year to compete with choirs around the world.

Every few years the BVU choir takes a trip to places around the world to compete with other choirs and enhance their skills and knowledge about music. Two years ago, the BVU choir took a tour to Canada.

“We wanted a place that wouldn’t ‘put out’ the students by attending. The trip to Italy wouldn’t conflict with anyone’s schedules and no one would miss anything academic by traveling during spring break,” Dr. Merrin Guice, Choir Director at BVU explained.

The choir will be participating in the Riva Del Garda Choral Competition in Italy. The festival has been established for more than 15 years and is a part of the Arts Connect System, which is responsible for tours, competitions, and festivals around the world. This establishment hosts more than 20 festivals and competitions yearly around the world.

“The second reason we chose Italy was because it was a competition. This is our opportunity to see other choirs, to show ourselves to other musicians, and have an opportunity to grow,” Guice explained.

Sophomore Taylor Yearous is one of the many students interested in taking the Italy trip, a place she has always wanted to visit.

“I’m really excited to go because I’ve always romanticized Europe,” Yearous said. “Singing is one passion I’ve always had, so why not share that passion in a place as romantic as Italy.”

The choir has assistance from the music budget but the expenses will ultimately be student-driven.

“Right now there are 49 students signed up to travel and each is responsible to pay $1000 for travel expenses,” Guice said. “Students that are not in choir are welcomed to come but they will not have the benefit of the choir trip fund to assist them.”

Yearous is planning on funding the trip by herself with help from her family.

“I worked hard all summer in order to pay for my trip, and the way I’m sitting now, I should be totally okay,” Yearous gushed.

While student funding is encouraged, the choir will be selling CD’s over the holiday break for other means of fundraising.