Berea students sing in KMEA All-State Choirs


Sixth graders Sienna Johnson (L) and Chloe Gibson (center) stand with choir director Amanda Barnhill.

By Cora Livingston, Reporter

Several students from Berea Community Elementary, Middle, and High School were selected to participate in the Kentucky Music Educators Association (KMEA) All-State choir program on February 6-8. The students traveled to the Louisville Convention Center where they spent time practicing and performing with students from across Kentucky. Fifth grader Jonah Hill and sixth graders Sienna Johnson and Chloe Gibson were selected as members of the Kentucky Children’s Choir (KCC), which is comprised of about 200 fifth and sixth grade students. Freshman Hannah Fairchild was selected as a member of the Kentucky Junior High Choir (KJHC), which consists of two choirs of 200 seventh, eighth, and ninth grade students. Sophomore Braedyn Johnson, junior Noah Prentice, and senior Emy Lovell were selected as members of the Kentucky High School Choir (KHSC), which consists of three choirs of 200 students.

The audition process for the KCC and KJHC is online; students record their audition which includes scales, melodic patterns, and a prepared solo. High school students auditioning for a spot in the KHSC audition live; students from Berea Community High School traveled to Madison Central High school to complete their live auditions which included both prepared music and sightreading. Emy Lovell said of her first time partaking in a live audition: “It was incredibly nerve-racking and strangely intimidating. It’s not easy to sing in front of strangers…also, being scored on sight reading, which is new to me, seemed impossible.” Amanda Barnhill, BCMS/HS choir director, said of this process and the student’s time at All-State: “The students worked very hard before auditions and after auditions to prepare for the KMEA All-State Choirs. They spent a lot of time rehearsing on their own as well as with me to learn their music.”

Sophomore Braedyn Johnson (L) and Senior Emy Lovell before the All-State Choir performance.

Emy, who unfortunately contracted a cold while at All-State, said of her overall experience: “A cough didn’t stop me from leaving All-State knowing I had experienced something truly incredible. I am honored to have been selected for All-State choir and to have worked along with so many talented individuals from Kentucky.”