My name is Paige Russell and I have been a choir member for 7 years. I am so thankful to everyone in the choir and to the directors for helping me to grow not only as a musician, but as a person as well. I plan on attending UW Milwaukee this fall, and I look forward to continuing the use of the skills that the choir has helped me to develop throughout my college career and the rest of my life, and for that I am incredibly grateful.
Within my six years of the GBGC, I have learned much more than I could ever comprehend or begin to express my gratitude for. I have met so many wonderful friends that I know will be with me for the rest of my life and I am so appreciative for those bonds I have created within other sections of the choir as well as my own. I was also fortunate enough to broaden my appreciation for music when I changed voice parts my freshman year of high school from a soprano one to an alto. This has allowed me to challenge myself and became able to partake in the State Solo and Ensemble Festival for solos throughout my school career in choir. I am excited to start my future at the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee where I will major in Social Work with a minor in foreign language. I hope to audition for the choir there so I can expand my passion for music even more! Again, I will be forever grateful for my experience with the Girls Choir and for all of the opportunities I was presented with, and am excited to apply all of these skills into my life as a young, independent adult!
Hi, my name is Hannah VanBoxel and I am 18 years old. This Spring I will be graduating from Green Bay East High School. This year marks my 11th and final year as a member of the Green Bay Girl Choir; joining and staying in this choir is one of the best decisions I have ever made. This organization has provided me with much more than a musical and creative outlet, it has provided me with memories I will never forget, along with friendships that will last a lifetime, and has taught me so much more than how to read music.
Throughout my eleven years in the GBGC there have been many great travel opportunities. Some of the most memorable places I’ve been with the choir include Germany and Austria, and we will be traveling to Estonia and Finland this June. Although these destinations are great, this choir has shown me that the people you travel with are really what make or break a trip. Through the choir I have met some of the most kind hearted, caring, and considerate people I have ever come across. The GBGC has provided me with some of my closest friends who I most likely would have never met otherwise, and I am beyond grateful for that. When you put together these amazing travel opportunities and such strong friendships, you get countless unforgettable moments. From the time I stayed up until 3 am as a second grader on our overnight trip in Milwaukee, to getting a hairbrush thrown at me out of anger in Cincinnati, to singing in the boxcar ferris wheel over Vienna, to whatever memories will be created this year in Estonia. Each trip results in the making of new memories, inside jokes, and friendships by the time that coach bus pulls back into the Grace Lutheran parking lot and we all pool out and prepare to send off our seniors and say our goodbyes.
I realize that this is getting rather lengthy, granted I am trying to summarize the past eleven years of my life, but I’ll try to conclude this quickly. Despite my musical evolvement, I am a very analytical person. I have always excelled in math and find myself continuously fascinated by it. For this reason, I plan to attend the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee next fall and major in actuarial science. Although I will not be pursuing music as a career, I hope to stay involved recreationally. Music has played a huge role in making me who I am today. I will never be able to truly explain everything this choir has given me, as the vast majority of it is not tangible, and like I said, I’m an analytical thinker, so words are not my forte. So I’ll leave it at this: the Green Bay Girl Choir has changed my life, in ways that are beyond my understanding. Everyone deserves to have what this choir was provided me with. A place where they can be accepted and included, a place where they can share their passion with others, a place where love is spread and encouraged. A home away from home. For me, for the past eleven years, that place has been wherever the Green Bay Girl Choir took me.
If you would have told me 7 years ago that this is where I would be right now I probably would have thought you were crazy. Music has been a passion of mine since I was little and that is why I was so thankful to have the GBGC in my life. Not only was it something I could look forward to but it also gave me fun times, good friends, and memories that will last a lifetime. Being in the GBGC I have gotten to experience so many things from fall camp to taking a trip to Ohio. These experiences and getting to work with such amazing people has taught me so much and helped shape me into the person I am today.
This year in May I will be graduating from Luxemburg-Casco High School. Then in the Fall I will be attending Edgewood College to Major in Criminal Justice and most likely Minor in Psychology. Also during this time I hope to be playing softball. I then plan to go to Law School in hopes of becoming a Corporate or Medical Lawyer.
I would like to finish this up by thanking everyone who has helped me throughout my time in the Green Bay Girl Choir.
Why did I join Boy’s choir? Honestly, I hadn’t really given joining a non-school choir very much thought until my middle school choir teacher, Mrs. Ribbens, suggested I should look into the “Green Bay Boy’s Choir.” Even after she told me to audition, I still was pretty apprehensive, but I figured I should at least give it a shot. Wow, am I glad that I gave it a shot.
I’ve been a part of the choir since my freshman year, which is roughly four years now. Singing with a group of very talented guys has definitely improved my singing greatly, and even helped me come out of my shell. At school, I never really did many extra-curriculars. With my newfound confidence from Joliet, I tried out for the summer musical, Catch Me if You Can, and loved it. I’ve been doing theatre ever since which has changed my high school career for the better. Since I joined the choir, I have traveled to Toronto and Chicago with the group, and I will be going to Missouri. Joining the boy’s choir has truly changed my life. If I were to change one thing, I would have joined it much sooner than I did.
Next year, I will be going to UWGB for the pre-optometry program with the hopes of becoming an optometrist one day. I will, hopefully, continue to sing throughout college, but you never truly know anything of the future. Finally, I would just like to thank Mr. Berendsen for putting up with my shenanigans for the last four years, my parents for giving me financial and emotional support throughout high school and all my fellow singers who helped to make the choir a second family.
My name is Lunden Friberg and I am a Senior celebrating my 11th year in the Green Bay Boy Choir. I will be graduating from Southwest High School in June and attending Purdue University in fall where I will be studying the pre-professional medical track at the Health and Human Sciences College.
Although my ultimate goal is to work in healthcare, I have always loved music. My mother told me that I was singing even before I could talk. I would sing to to the radio while riding in the car and really knew how to 'bust a move' at family weddings. (I have several wrecked tuxedo pants to prove it!) I guess singing has always been a way for me to express my thoughts when speaking became difficult. The Green Bay Boy Choir became a group where I could express myself on a regular basis.
Beyond the unforgettable friendships that I have made, the Boy Choir has allowed me to travel all over: from Chicago and Minneapolis to the west coast and up into Canada. Our overseas trips to Ireland, Austria, and the Czech Republic were amazing and I learned so much about other cultures whiling learning about myself.
I want to thank all of the directors, teachers, accompanists, and the parents who have chaperoned our trips all these years. I especially want to thank the other members of the choir. I will never forget you!
“I am Steven, a graduating senior at West High School. I have been a part of the Green Bay Boy Choir since third grade. I remember the original Voyager Choir I started in with Mrs. Green as director. Only three members of that group, Mark J, Michael, and myself, stuck with the choir each year since. Being part of the choir for ten years largely impacted my life. Not only was it good to meet kids my age, it was great because of the lessons it taught through the performances: Be patient, be prepared, be flexible.
I always remember my first year at the Voice Discovery Camp, looking up at the older guys and wanting to be like them, leading camp songs like “Hida Hida, “ “Duchess at Tea,” and “Yonder Come Day.” The touring choirs allowed me to have some of the best times of my life; traveling to the Pacific Northwest, Twin Cities, Chicago, Czech Republic, and Australia and New Zealand. I remember on trip in a coach bus traveling to Chicago trying to convince Roy we were actually traveling to Kansas. No more than fifteen minutes into it, a semi truck with the print “ Kansas City, MO.” rolls by the bus window. With these trips came great opportunities to explore culture and music. We performed in concerts with world renowned conductors Bob Chilcot, Andre Thomas, and many others in places like Dvorak Hall and the Sydney Opera House.
Though I intend to major in Aerospace engineering, I will always let music into my life as it has always been there. I believe a life without music, is a life without life.”
“While sitting in my second grade music class playing with my favorite bendy pencil, my teacher mentioned a summer program for boys interested in singing. I was not interested in singing, so I continued to focus on my pencil. She told the class all about this training camp that gave young musicians a chance to be a part of the Green Bay Boy Choir. I was not interested in the Green Bay Boy Choir. Then my teacher told us how the Boy Choir toured all around the world and spent days at a time away from home … I dropped the pencil.
Ten years later, I look back at that moment as one of the defining points in my life. A passion for music eventually grew around my desire to travel, and it has influenced everything I have ever done. The Green Bay Boy Choir changed me from a pudgy, nervous, awkward little boy, into a pudgy, stage-loving, music-making giant. At Ashwaubenon High School, I participated in Concert Choir, Show Choir, musicals, Solo & Ensemble, Spring Play, and One-act Play competitions, all because of the confidence and eagerness to perform embedded in me by the Green Bay Boy Choir.
I know from personal experience how hard it is for a boy to be a singer. I remember the strange looks from peers and adults as I ducked out of football practice early for a choir rehearsal. To the kids feeling like they are wrong or different for singing, I can only stress how much it will pay off in the future. By the time you reach high school, being a singer is something others will respect you for, not to mention, the ladies don’t mind it al all. I have made friendships over the years that I will hold with me for the rest of my life. If I had quit choir hi it wasn’t the “cool” thing to do, I never would have met guys like Mike, Josh, Nathan, And Steven.
Next year, I will be attending Luther College in Iowa to study political science, and I will continue singing in the many choirs they have there. I wish all my friends in our graduating class the best of luck out in the world in whatever it is they choose to do, and I thank the Green Bay Boy Choir for bringing us all together, teaching us to sing, and making us a family.” –Mark (the “other” Mark of Ashwaubenon High)