Congratulations to the Class of 2018!

BCC News
Congratulations to the Class of 2018! thumbnail Photo

Photo Credit: Gretjen Helene

As our outgoing seniors graduate and head off into their next stage of life, take a peek at what's next for this year's 29(!) graduating young artists. 

 

Joelleen Alphonse

Being a part of BCC has had such an impact on my life, I could not imagine my years in high school without going to rehearsal during the week. It was always a welcoming environment where learning and challenging myself actually felt like fun. Since I joined as a freshman in Choral Union, I used to feel like there were certain experiences in BCC’s history that I couldn’t really relate to. But through the past four years, I’ve been a part of new and important moments that I’ll never forget. I’ve made such amazing friends and learned about so many wonderful people that I’ve gotten to travel and explore with. Along with learning music theory and the histories of so many different cultures, the biggest lesson that I learned was about myself, and how I shouldn’t hold myself back from my potential. BCC helped me feel confident and capable, and I’ll never forget how it has changed me for the better. Music will always be an important part of my life, which is why I intend to continue singing at Simmons College, despite it not being my major. I’m a little sad to be leaving, but more excited for those who are not yet, who are still making memories and growing into being future leaders and advocates for change.

Ethan Ayer

I used to cry when singing in front of other people. While I now do the opposite (I prefer crying in private), after joining BCC in sixth grade, my baseless weepings (mostly) ceased. Despite a brief existential crisis in JME, throughout my time in BCC, I have been able to cultivate my passion for music - something that was missing even in my school’s choir. Able to sing alto all seven years, my BCC escapades began in the Dorchester Intermediate Advanced choir, which two of my hometown friends were also put into. Although they later dropped out (R.I.P.), our weekly carpool was the highlight of my week and the subsequent rehearsals released endorphins in my brain. When summer ricocheted back into my life after that first year then, I was HOOKED and could not wait to start the next year of BCC. Slowly moving up to Premier Choir (my current choir), each year, BCC unearthed a new layer of confidence in me and taught me how to use music as a gateway to social change and personal discovery. Not only did it motivate me to apply myself more in school, as music is a natural stress reliever for me, BCC stimulated my mental development and the conversations and lessons we learned seeped into the other classrooms in my life. As I enter into the next stages of my life then, by studying recorded music and journalism at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts, I will carry these lessons I learned at BCC through the music I create and the story I continue to write, for when I did not have a voice growing up, BCC gave me one.

Sophia Bereaud

I am turning in this bio late (my apologies, Ms. Hieber) because for weeks I have been making too much of it. It is difficult to translate years into words, particularly the years of change BCC has seen me through. I cannot do justice to the number of small, tired, end-of-day rehearsal moments that on second glance have become monuments in my mind. I have yet to successfully articulate on paper the sensation of being surrounded by sound and feeling everything but harmony vanish. So I will instead give gratitude: to the organization for giving me experiences in the world and a way to understand them, to the people of the organization for embracing me in the best and worst of times, and to the spirit of the people, which keeps us singing Shosholoza in the post-concert reception halls long after the paying ticket holders have had enough. May that spirit always live.

Sade Brooks

I have been a member of the Boston’s Children’s Chorus since 2008. I wouldn’t change the experience for the world. We’re honestly more than a choir and we do more than sing. We have genuine heart-felt conversations about social change, there’s inside jokes, laughter, tears, and so much more. We’re a family and that’s what makes our stage presence so powerful. I will truly miss being a singer in this organization and all the wonderful staff members. I’d like to give a special shoutout to Michele Adams, who was my conductor for the eight out of the ten years that I’ve been here. She is wise, graceful, and one of the best mentors that I could ever have. I’m grateful to have learned from her.

I am attending the University of Massachusetts Amherst with a major in Psychology and minor in French Studies. As a young adult, I’m both to begin this next chapter in my life. Whenever I come back to Boston I will definitely stop by BCC!

Emmanuel Chalumeau

I started BCC around 3rd or 4th grade. I can honestly say that throughout the years I have grown a deeper love for the organization. I have made friendships here that I hope will last a lifetime. I have also grown a love for music that will follow me for the rest of my life. In the future, I plan on studying Computer Science and hope to start my own business shortly after I graduate.

Hannah Cole

Singing has always brought me pure joy, and I joined Boston Children’s Chorus to share that joy with others. Along the way, I have learned operas and spirituals, performed in unforgettable venues, and bonded with incredible people. BCC has expanded my horizons and inspired me to be a more thoughtful musician, citizen, and person. I hope to retain the conscientiousness and passion I developed at BCC as I move on to Harvard University and explore new ways to better the world around me.

Charlie Cowen-Breen

I sang in choirs throughout middle school and my first year of high school, but none had the social justice focus of BCC. For this reason, I was nervous to join at first, when I considered it two years ago, but I was happy to be welcomed into the community. It’s been such a privilege to perform in such incredible venues, with such incredible peers and teachers, and for such important causes over the last two years. This year, my time unfortunately had to be shared with another passion of mine, astrophysics and mathematics, and I wish that it could have been possible for me to spend more time at BCC. I can’t wait to continue pursuing both my musical and academic interests next year at Princeton University.

Nel Decker-Gavin

I’ve been in BCC for eleven years now which feels crazy to say because I can still remember my audition where my six-year-old self sang a song about strawberries like it was yesterday. Since then, this organization has seen me grow up from little girl into the person I am today and I can confidently say I would not be the same if I didn’t have BCC in my life. The lessons I’ve learned here and the opportunities I’ve been exposed to have changed my life forever. From performing at the Women’s March and the March for Our Lives, to having serious conversations about the world we live in, BCC has showed me to lead with love, compassion and strength in all walks of life. This chorus has taught me how to have an open mind  and to always have hope in the hardest situations. Not to mention the friendships I’ve gained here are friendships that will last a lifetime. These people have not only given me a second family to lean on, but a home that I will always feel comfortable in no matter where life takes me in the future. Leaving BCC seems impossible to me because I’ve spent most of my life here, but as I study creative writing and journalism at Sarah Lawrence College next year, BCC will always hold an incredibly special place in my heart.

Ana Laura Delgado

Over the last seven years, BCC has become another home to me. I came into the organization as a really shy, awkward, and oblivious little kid who, if you picked out at a concert, seemed to be trying to master the art of singing with her mouth closed. I was afraid to talk to people, to put more than the minimal effort into the world around me, for fear of making mistakes. It’s through this choir that I learned that joy comes from giving it your all and putting all your emotions and passion into the task ahead. Because when I finally learned to give more of myself, BCC gave me in return worlds I had never dreamt of before, friends that are closer to being family, and moments I’ll replay in my head well into old age.

Whenever I am away for extended periods of time with BCC, the following weeks are disorienting since I find myself still searching for the moments and conversations I can only have here. Looking into the future, I can only imagine how this will replicate once I’m no longer coming in twice a week. These words can’t properly describe how much my life was impacted by being part of this organization but I thank all the adults and fellow choir members who were with me along the way. I hope I won’t be away for too long.

Svayam Dialani

BCC’s impact on my life is so incredibly hard to express in words, so this blurb will hardly do it justice. I remember my audition, three years ago, when I told Ms.Heiber I couldn’t sight read at all. After countless instances of late nights memorizing music, trudging through pieces for the first time, eye opening conversations, lots of confusion, and downright mesmerizing performances, my growth through BCC is unparalleled. For one, it presents a different type of home for me. I can unapologetically be myself in front of what truly feels like a second family. Coming to rehearsal is an escape from the chaos that goes on every day, and I have genuinely looked forward to Wednesdays and Thursdays since joining YME. Along with enjoying the invaluable friendships I have made, there is something special about closing my eyes and simply listening to the music we produce – those moments never disappoint. In terms of application, BCC has taught me how to carry myself through almost every facet of life. I have learned how to lead with empathy, listen with open mindedness, work with investment and present myself with composure. And I couldn’t be more grateful for the opportunities I’ve had to put these skills on display. Not many people can say they’ve performed at places like Royal Albert Hall, Carnegie Hall, and Fenway Park, let alone for such a good cause. Seeing tears stream down the faces of audience members is priceless and, like the bonds created and lessons learned, will remain in my memory for the rest of my life. Despite joining BCC later than most of my peers, I have the same appreciation for the organization as they do. I certainly plan on maintaining my ties to the organization, and I hope to continue spreading the messages that I was so thankful to receive. As I go on to study biomedical engineering at Northwestern University for the next four years, I couldn’t thank my mentors enough and I will always hold BCC in high regard for changing my life.

Amechi Egbunike

My name is Amechi Egbunike, and I am one of the co-presidents of the Young Men’s Ensemble. I joined Boston Children’s Chorus in 2007, a whopping eleven years ago. I came to BCC an introverted and timid seven year old, with not as much confidence or as many friends. At school, I blended in with most of the other kids and hid my musical talents, as if I was ashamed of my identity and what I did. But at BCC, my character developed more radiantly, along with the skills needed to communicate and create life changing relationships. When I got to the Premier Choir in seventh grade, although very young, my voice carried much more meaning, depth, and power, enough to help me mature and learn from uncomfortable events, such as being a middle school male in a mostly female group of high schoolers, or even wacky things like losing my passport. By the time I joined YME, it was my freshman year of high school, and BCC turned me completely around. I became more confident and engaged in rehearsal. When I went to school, I proudly stated that I sang in BCC and accepted my identity. I reached out to more people and expanded my knowledge and circle. But most importantly, I stood up like a leader. As I prepare to attend Harvard College in the fall for premed and a degree in STEM, I hope to continue standing as a positive and confident leader in any community I enter, and make lifelong connections that’ll bring me forward.

David Estrada

My BCC story is a little different than others. I joined BCC as a high school senior, meaning this would be my first and last year with the organization. Upon entering my first few rehearsals, my first impression of BCC consisted of two pieces: Men Ale-Men Vini by Sydney Guillaume and Leonardo Dreams of his Flying Machine by Eric Whitacre. I remember being handed these pieces and being told “Sight read this in solfege and for Leonardo, let’s just run it. For those of you who are new… good luck.” I remember thinking I was never going to learn these pieces in time for a show. Until I got to experience my first BCC retreat. During that time, I got a crash course in both solfege and sight reading in about two days and ultimately learning Men Ale in full. I remember the fear and joy I felt when just the day before, I had to sing my part alone, resulting in a train wreck of sound and TK threatening to “turn into a bear”, to singing the same piece the next day, sight reading another, and TK telling me “Yesterday, you didn’t know any solfege. Now look at you.” I remember all of the times I came up to TK telling him that I wasn’t sure I was able to learn each piece in time and everytime he would tell me that I was fine and that I would get it in time. As a result, I’ve never felt so confident in my voice before. BCC has taught me how to push myself forward and to not just “mail it in”.  I’ve learned how to fight for myself and others. Even by being in BCC for a year, I strongly feel as if I am a part of BCC’s movement and family. For that, I thank you, BCC.

Michaela Francesconi

10 years ago I was forced into WEH Training Choir, and I thought I would eventually quit BCC. I didn’t think I would ever be in PC, and certainly never perform this much, read music or travel. I thought that some other activity would eventually take over. But as the years went on, I couldn’t pull myself away. I quit other activities to make time for rehearsal. What I have found here is something indescribable.

The knowledge I have gained and the lessons I have learned in all areas of my life are innumerable. BCC has fostered my love for music and human connection. They have taught me the importance of balance and most importantly how to work for what is just.

Throughout high school more than ever, BCC has been my rock and my family. I know that I am a better, more equipped person because of this organization. As I move on to the University of Vermont I will bring the drive and passion I have fostered here and apply it to my career. Thank you for providing my parents with much more than they bargained for after forcing me into rehearsal all those years ago.

Maya Fray-Witzer

I stumbled across BCC almost on a whim, looking for a choir that would accommodate my busy school schedule. If I had known that such a transformative experience was out there, I surely would have auditioned earlier than the summer before my sophomore year, yet I feel blessed to have spent one year in Concert Choir and then two in Premier Choir. With a diverse repertoire and concern for social justice, BCC spoke to me as a Jewish American and as someone with a passion for equality. I have enjoyed singing locally as well as traveling to London, using my years of vocal training and musical theater experience to give impactful performances. Boston Children’s Chorus even connected me with a volunteer position in a new choir hoping to follow in BCC’s footsteps. Truly, to be a part of BCC is to be part of a vibrant network which connects talented singers, critical thinkers, and warm hearts. I have seen this first hand whenever we come into contact with alumni singers, past staff members, or enthused spectators. Singing at the 15th anniversary MLK performance this year gave me the opportunity to join new and old singers on the Symphony Hall stage, and peer through time at the past, present, and future of BCC. What I saw was an organization which has grown with time and  yet managed to stick to its values, guiding singers to become strong and responsible global citizens. As I move on to study and sing at Middlebury College next year, I feel comforted knowing that I will always have a home in the BCC community.

Alexandra Hamilton

I joined BCC when I was eleven years old and it has been an incredible experience. During my first years at BCC, I was intimidated by singing in front of people I didn’t know. However, through this vulnerability comes a certain trust in which you are accepted for who you are.  Although I didn’t immediately form friendships in BCC, I have come to recognize and appreciate that people in BCC really care about each other. I will forever be grateful to BCC because my time in this organization has caused me to grow socially and musically. Not only have I enjoyed singing with good friends, but BCC has been a safe space for me where I can talk about social issues both in the world and to me personally.  The bonds and friendships that I have fostered in BCC are unlike any other relationships in my life. There is a special connection when you can unite over music and similar outlooks on life. I will deeply miss BCC because of its amazing leadership, supportive community and passion for music. Next fall, I will be attending Wake Forest University and can only hope that I find another musical outlet that excites me as much as BCC.

Lena Harris

There is no place like home, and for the past 11 years of my life, that home for me has been BCC. Everytime I’m with the choir, whether I’m at a concert or at rehearsal, I can’t help but revel in its beauty. The room is always filled with people of varying ages, races, ethnicities, religions, backgrounds and socioeconomic statuses. We are the physical embodiment of diversity as well as proof that when people embrace their differences, it brings them together. When I feel bogged down by the current events of our world that are filled with hate and violence, BCC never fails to provide me with solace because I look around at all of the young people beside me and am reminded that the future is bright. Through BCC I have experienced countless opportunities that I wouldn’t have found anywhere else that I will treasure for as long as I live. There are so many social justice organizations out there that do incredible things, but there is nothing like the impact that BCC has on the communities that it touches. Music is a medium with which everyone can relate to because every culture has it in some form. Because of this we are able to send our audiences a deeper message that connects them on a human level. Next year I will be attending Barnard College of Columbia University in New York City, I will major in Human Rights because I wish to continue the social justice work that BCC has fostered in me. I also hope to always have music as a part of my life in some form. Thanks to all of the BCC members and staff for the endless memories and opportunities that I am so grateful to have lived through with you all.

Stephen Hart

The first time I went to visit the Boston Children’s Chorus was 3 years ago and let me just say I was beyond overwhelmed. I was surrounded by some of the most talented musicians I had ever seen and kids who knew the notes of a scale better than I knew the alphabet, and could pull a pitch out of thin air because that’s apparently possible. And I just didn’t know if this was beyond what I was capable of. I enjoyed singing ever since I started and it allowed me to express myself in a way that I never was able to do before, but when it came to reading music and singing harmonies and being an independent part of a whole chorus, my skills were not nearly as developed as they could have been. At my first rehearsal I was lost, but no matter how lost I got someone would guide me through the pieces and would help me to get back on track, which was something that I never got anywhere else. Dr. TK took the time to talk to me and see what I thought about the rehearsal and reassured me that the BCC is a place where you can learn how to become a better musician but more importantly an engaged and aware member of society. The next 3 years, as a member of BCC, I have sung at Symphony Hall, travelled to New York City, met singers from all over the world, and have made friends that I will be in contact with for the rest of my life. Coming into this year I was co-president of BCC, co-president of my school a capella group, and president of my school concert choir, and I accredit all of this to the unbelievable amount of time and energy that the BCC puts into every single singer that walks through its doors. I am excited to see where BCC is heading next, but my departing is definitely one that is bittersweet. I am sad to be leaving a group that although I have only been a part of for 3 years, I have seen progress from a group that only filled Jordan hall to one that performs at Carnegie Hall and sells out Symphony Hall. I am ready to pass on the baton to my fellow colleagues and ready to move off to Umass Lowell where a completely different adventure awaits me. Although 45 minutes north of BCC central, the Boston Children’s Chorus will always hold a special place in my heart and will be an organization I will never wander far from. I wanna thank all of the BCC staff and Singers that have made my journey possible and have given me the support and love that makes BCC the amazing family that it is.

Sarina Karim

I joined BCC three years ago because I wanted to sing with a large choir like I did in middle school. My mom discovered BCC through a friend and suggested that I audition. After auditioning, I was placed into Concert Choir. I was timid at first because I was out of my comfort zone joining an organization full of people who already knew each other. But the following year I was moved up to Premier Choir, and I grew to love coming to rehearsals every week, especially because I got to see the people who had become my friends. Although I was only in BCC for three years, it’s felt like I’ve been a part of it for so much longer because of the close friends I’ve made along the way. The people I’ve gotten to know during my time here are some of the most talented and interesting people I’ve ever met. It’s amazing how something as simple as a common love for music can bring together people of various races, religions, and socioeconomic status. BCC’s diversity facilitates having meaningful conversations about anything and everything, especially social justice issues. It’s nice to have the reassurance that at least one person can probably relate when current events are worrying me. In the fall, I will start the next chapter of my life at Northeastern University as a Health Science major on the premed track. I plan on joining an a cappella group, and I hope to come back to BCC to participate in alumni events. Looking back, joining BCC was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. I’m eternally grateful for all the unique opportunities I’ve experienced. This organization and everyone in it will always be incredibly special to me.

Helen Leung

Unlike other singers, I did not grow up in BCC. In fact, this is my first year in BCC.

How BCC and I first met was very interesting. I worked at the Wang Theater down on Tremont street, and saw BCC’s colorful signature on the wall. Growing up as a choir kid, I knew I could not live without singing. Months after moving to Boston, I was already dying to look for a chorus I could audition and sing crazily for. And BCC’s signature popped up in my head. On the first day of Premier Choir rehearsal, I was astonished by its high standards of choral music. I immediately said to myself, “this is it.”

Being in BCC, of course, is about pursuing stronger musicianship and higher performance quality. I had never felt so comfortable being able to express myself during every PC performance. I was able to release all of my performer’s personality on stage. There is a sense of completion and overwhelming joy whenever I deliver the messages behind the pieces. I am able to immerse every part of me with the flow of the music. There is not a moment on stage I do not enjoy.

I came to BCC for music, yet what I got out of BCC was much more than music. The constant conversations we had in and out of rehearsal acted as an eye-opening lens for me, a recent immigrant, to dig into the deep struggles America is facing. I am very grateful that I can be on the same page as my peers, to learn the way they analyze social issues and so I can get to know America in different lenses as well. BCC holds the capacity to give every singer chances to raise their voice in a safe space -- no matter how different our identities are. More importantly, we are initiating social change by singing -- my favorite way to do it -- being a media to amplify the messages behind the artwork, and influencing our audience, and of course, ourselves, with courage to start the change.

I always joke around before our concerts start: what if I could actually sit in the middle of the audience to watch how well we performed? This is the pride I hold for BCC -- how lucky I am to be a part of this amazingly inspiring chorus.

Lila Lifton

I joined BCC my freshman year, following in the footsteps of close older friends who passionately (aggressively) assured me that the organization was the place for me. I am so thankful that I listened to them. As a violinist, being a part of a serious chorus completely opened my eyes to a completely different side of the musical world. It taught me how to listen and to lead; to join with others over our shared emotional passions and channel our ideas as an ensemble, as a family, into a powerful art. Over the past four years, BCC has grown to become an extremely important part of my high school experience, giving me both a community and a purpose in the name of social justice. In the fall, I will be exploring the vague liberal arts world of the “humanities” at Wesleyan University. I know that I will carry what BCC has taught me–as an activist, musician, and human—for the rest of my life.

Julia Logan

Seven years ago, I walked into my audition at BCC central as a scared and timid 11 year old girl. A couple of weeks later I received a letter inviting me to be a part of BCC and I was so excited to start. Joining this organization was one of the best decisions I have ever made. BCC has been my safe haven for these past seven years. This welcoming and positive community has given me the strength to overcome many obstacles I have faced. It has taught me about the injustices that go on in society and how to use my voice as a catalyst for social change. I will continue to use my voice as I open the next chapter in my life. Next year I will be attending Dean College, where I will be majoring in Psychology as well as playing Division III softball and volleyball. I would have never been able to achieve my dream of playing college sports without the confidence that BCC has given me.

Josie Mejia

BCC has been a part of my life since I was 6 years old. I wasn’t in the choir then but my older sister was. It’s baffling to think that in the fall I’ll be enrolled in Fisher College. I officially joined BCC when I was a fourth grader and was placed in Villa Victoria (back when that was a thing) with conductors Mr. Reynolds and Ms. Howe. I remember my favorite part of going to rehearsal was playing in the park outside of the building with other members of the choir. My second favorite part hands down was being part of the back row, that meant I was tall. I then traveled up to CI, went on to CIA, had two years in CC and finally made my way up to Premier Choir! My first holiday concert stays engraved in my memory. I was dropped off early because my sister had an earlier call time and to pass the time I helped fold some programs.There were some older members of a choir wearing red jackets and I was a little shy and felt awkward. I think they could tell, so they started a conversation with me. They even sang one of their songs. I was amazed at their performance so, naturally, Carol of the Bells became my favorite holiday song. When I heard them I knew that’s where I wanted to be. So I stayed, and learned, and got my very own red jacket this year! I used to think of BCC as just another activity to go to. But as I attended more rehearsals it began to grow on me. I started seeing it as a message and a change that I wanted very much to be a part of. I grew stronger connections with my conductors, a stronger understanding of the music and the messages behind them. I even started enjoying singing. BCC enabled me to sing and tour amazing places. Places that I never would have expected possible for me, such as Montreal, Carnegie Hall, Rockport, the ICA and SYMPHONY HALL. I was able to sing with all my siblings (my sister an alumna, my sister in CC, and my two brothers in DI) in Symphony hall! Who does that? There is so much that BCC has given me and taught me. Friends I would never have crossed paths with if it weren’t for being in the chorus. So many opportunities, so many beans! I owe a debt of gratitude to all my conductors, my parents and my sister and siblings for continuing the Mejia-BCC family legacy. Thank you for this truly incredible experience! Seniors, We made it!!

Emily Meng

When I first auditioned for the Boston Children’s Chorus, I was in the fifth grade, oblivious as to how much of my time I would dedicate to this organization. I made it into Dorchester Intermediate, but couldn’t actually attend the following year. I auditioned the next year and entered Central Intermediate as a confused sixth grader whose only choral experience was fifth grade choir at my elementary school. Over the years, I spent my Mondays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays with Mrs. Adams, until junior year, when I was promoted to Premier Choir. BCC has become such an integral part of my life that I don’t know who I am without it. It’s almost a running joke with my school friends because of how much I talk about it. “Wait, Emily, are you in BCC? I had… absolutely no idea!” BCC has pushed me to become a better person, both as a musician and as an active member of my community. The musical excellence I’ve achieved with BCC is unparalleled with any other choir I’ve ever sung in, and the people I’ve met have been the most diverse, talented, intelligent people I’ve had the privilege of encountering. In the fall, I will be attending the University of Washington in Seattle as a premed student. I’m extremely thankful for everything BCC has given me and how much it truly has changed my life.

Austin Moore

Unlike most, I was not introduced to Boston Children’s Chorus in the most happy way. My grandmother was sick with cancer and in the hospital. She turned on the TV on January 15th to find a group of kids singing in red jackets. It brought her to tears. It wasn’t in her wildest dreams that 9 years later, her granddaughter would be one of those kids in a red jacket. I joined BCC when I was 9 years old. I started in Central Intermediate, then moved on to Concert Choir, and finally Premier Choir, where I have spent the last 3 years. My time in BCC has helped mold me into who I am today. I remember being a little fifth grader in choir with Mrs. Adams and overhearing a Premier Choir member talk about her recent trip to Jordan. I was amazed. The fact that she could travel the world with her friends while performing music kept me motivated to stay active in BCC for my chance to do the same. In 2017, I had the opportunity to travel to London with BCC to participate in the International Youth Choir Festival. This experience was the zenith of my BCC career. I was able to make friendships with people from South Africa, Israel, and more, while also strengthening bonds with my own choirmates. The skills that Boston Children’s Chorus has taught me about how to be a global citizen will aid me tremendously in the future as I plan on studying International and Global Studies at Elon University. Thank you to every conductor, singer, staff member, and board member that has made my BCC experience phenomenal.

Catherine O’Brien

Thanks to BCC, I’ve spent the last four years surrounded by some of the smartest, most motivated, and most passionate young people I have ever met. I am so grateful for the incredible community that this organization has given me– my friends from home all think I’m crazy for schlepping the hour and a half train ride (each way!) to and from BCC on a school night twice a week, but the feeling I get once I walk into rehearsal makes a crazy commute worth it. Not only has BCC made me a better musician, taught me confidence and leadership, and allowed me to tour nationally and internationally to the likes of Carnegie Hall and Royal Albert Hall; this organization made me a better person. The people here inspire me and empower me to dream big and be the best version of myself that I can be. After I graduate, I will be moving to Chicago to serve with Americorps City Year and then attending college, and I will carry all that I have learned at BCC with me throughout my gap year, my education, and my life.

Ardiana Pimentel

When I was about 11 years old, I met my best friend. She was a semi-quiet girl who always wore pink and had the most interesting hairstyles and from the first day we met I knew we would be best friends. I met her here in the Boston Children’s Chorus. I’ve been in this organization for as long as I can remember. And through this experience of being with such a close and amazing family, I’ve made long lasting friendships and had some of the best memories of my life. Growing up, I didn’t appreciate how great this program would be for me and I didn’t realize how much of an impact it would have on me. On my lowest moments when I felt the world crashing on me and wanted to give everything up, to the times where I felt I was at my highest and nothing could stop me, I always had BCC there for me. BCC helped me be more comfortable with myself and my identity. I never felt confident or comfortable in my own skin until I met all of these amazing artists. I wouldn’t be who I am now if it weren’t for BCC. I can’t even imagine my life without it. In my life, almost nothing was constant. From switching schools and moving, the only thing truly constant in my life is my family, both blood and here. Growing up, I never really had faith in my future or that I would really be successful or happy in life, and BCC changed that for me. The moment I knew this was where I was meant to be, was when Concert Choir went to Montreal. I will never forget how much laughter, tears(both good and bad), and crazy moments there were. I made irreplaceable bonds with people who I would do anything for now and gained experience and knowledge I could never get anywhere else. Having people like Ms. Adams to always be my rock and my choir mom, guiding me whenever I didn’t stay with the group and helping me with personal things were also blessings in disguise. BCC was my home away from home, my safe haven. Being in this organization for 10 years was one of the best decision my mom ever made(besides me), and if I could do it all again I would. I hope to continue bringing more children involved with BCC and promoting its mission in other aspects of my life. In the fall of 2018, I will be going full ride to Bunker Hill Community College. I hope to further my education at Northeastern University studying business & creating more places for minorities to gain access in their communities.

Joseph Rodriguez

I’ve only been in BCC for two years, but it feels like five. When I first audition I was hesitant because I was the only one from my grade from school but looking back at it it was the best thing I have ever done. BCC brought me in with open arms and I immediately felt welcome. The teachers are wonderful and very understanding and my peers are amazing musicians and I wouldn’t have it any other way. My first tour with BCC was my first year there and it was to London. I had never been outside of the country before and I was excited. BCC has introduced me to so many opportunities and I can’t thank them enough for it. BCC helped me become a better musician and now I am able to help my peers at school with their musicianship skills. After BCC I am going to college to be a music educator to shape the next generation of musicians to make change.

Natalia Ruiz

I only spent two years with BCC, though I wish it was longer. I was always hesitant to do choir because my experiences in choirs and orchestras in the past hadn’t been great, so while I knew about BCC for a while, I dismissed it, thinking it wasn’t the place for me. But eventually I auditioned, was placed in Premier Choir, and I found myself rehearsing Madame White Snake for the first time, surrounded by people who had already learned it. I was terrified. But despite that, the girls I sang with made me feel accepted in a way I never was in previous experiences with music.

BCC became like a second home to me. I looked forward to every rehearsal because I got to be with people I love, doing music I love. BCC revived my passion for music which had been slowly waning. Since joining BCC, I’ve joined my school’s A Cappella group, I began arranging music, and after playing the djembe for a Premier Choir rehearsal I discovered I had a knack for drumming! Now, I perform with my school’s concert band and drumline ensemble as a percussionist. Who knew that joining a choir would lead to that!

Next year, I’m going to UMASS Amherst, majoring in anthropology with a focus on global studies and foreign policy. I want to harness the compassion and love I learned at BCC to help change the world. I want to do more A Cappella, choir, and drumming, none of which would have occurred to me without the support, love and talent from BCC.

Sarah Scott

Hi! My name is Sarah Scott and I joined Boston Children’s Chorus my sophomore year of high school. Entering into concert choir, everyone seemed to be close to each other and have their friend groups. Luckily, I was quick to find people my age that I could be friends with. Over the course of the year, we formed a tight bond and even hung out outside of choir! I had my group of friends and mingled with everyone else in the choir too. Like my friendships, I grew to love the music we worked on and I am even grateful for the sight singing portions of rehearsal. BCC forced me to be on time, organized, and socially aware. No one was yelling at me to do these things, but I did them for the greater good of the choir. Moving up to Premier Choir made my experience at BCC even greater, we work at a sophisticated level and now I feel unstoppable in terms of music making. Next year, I will be attending Pace University in NYC, and I will never forget the opportunities BCC has given me. Thank you Mrs. Adams, Dr. T-K, and everyone else on the BCC staff for making these past 3 years valuable.

Abigail Sweeney

After my 3 great years at BCC, I am very sad to graduate and leave behind an organization that has become a second home. First, I would like to thank the entire BCC staff for their endless dedication to the singers. They are amazing. My experience wouldn’t have been the same without them. Second, I want to say thank you to my parents and family for being my biggest fans. Seeing them in the audience made me loved and supported everyday. As I reflect upon my time at BCC, I cannot forget all the amazing things I have learned both musically and beyond. I am eternally grateful for that. Next year I will be attending Rhodes College in Memphis, TN and I could not be more excited.

Loulou Taylor

My name is Loulou Taylor and I am about to graduate as a senior from Dana Hall School. I’ve been a part of BCC for 5 years now. I entered in the Central Intermediate Advanced choir and then spent two years in Concert Choir and two years in Premier Choir. BCC has provided me with incredible opportunities like travelling to Montreal and London and singing in world famous concert halls. Apart from amazing performances, BCC has broadened my world view and challenged me to see other perspectives. Through our uncensored conversations about tough topics, whether it be about political, racial, gender based, or any other issues, I have learned to listen and make my opinion heard; skills that I will continue to use as I go into the world.  After I graduate, I am taking a gap year and then continuing on to study music in college. I want to thank BCC from the bottom of my heart for introducing me to insanely talented people, loyal friends, and accomplished mentors. BCC has been my family, my comfort space, and a place to do what I love. Thank you to everyone I’ve met along the way for never ceasing to motivate and inspire me.