About the MEI Choir Department
The MEI Concert Choir is is an auditioned choir of 50 voices from the MEI Secondary School. The MEI Concert Choir sings a wide range of top quality choral literature, specializing in acappella singing. Comprised of grade 11 and 12 students the choir has toured many places in Canada and the USA. The MEI Concert Choir has enjoyed incredible success over many years through a variety of performance venues. They have received Superior and Gold awards from regional and national festivals, delighted audiences in many Christmas concerts, and served in numerous local church ministries. The choir is right at the beginning of another busy season that will again feature many Christmas performances, including a spectacular concert with the Trinity Western University Choirs and orchestra at the Chan Centre for the Performing Arts in Vancouver. Last spring the MEI Concert Choir finished the year with a fantastic tour to New York City, where the Concert Choir won Gold at the New York Heritage Music Festival, as well as an Adjudicator’s Award for high choral score and was a part of winning the overall Festival Sweepstakes award as the top music program at the Festival, including the MEI Chamber Choir, Concert Band, and Jazz Band (Razzberry Jam). A highlight for the choir was performing in the United Nations Building in New York. In 2007 the choir was very honoured to sing with Canada’s popular tenor act, the Canadian Tenors, and have performed twice with Tenore (2009, 2011), Canada’s newest tenor trio. 2006 saw the Concert Choir win Gold at the Anaheim Heritage Music Festival, in Anaheim, California, and also the Anaheim Festival Sweepstakes Award; which they also won in 2004. On that tour the choir was highlighted in performances on a Royal Caribbean cruise ship and in every port enroute to Ensenada, Mexico. In the past the choir has also been honoured to perform at Robert Schuller’s Crystal Cathedral. The Concert Choir performed in the prestigious, invitational Festival of Gold in Anaheim (2010) and are attending the Festival of Gold in Chicago this spring (2012).
The MEI Chamber Singers is the most requested and busiest choir at MEI. 16-18 of MEI’s best singers become a team of incredible talent as they rehearse two mornings per week and often have a demanding concert schedule. Recent groups of MEI Chamber Singers have won Superior and Gold awards at many local, national and international choral festivals, including Gold and an Adjudicator’s Trophy at the New York Heritage Music Festival (2008), Gold, Adjudicator’s Trophy and Highest Choral Score Award at 2 successive Anthem Heritage Music Festivals (2006, 2004), as well as being a part of winning the overall “Festival Sweepstakes” Award for top music program at the festival (2008, 2006, 2004), which includes the MEI Concert Choir, MEI Concert Band, MEI Jazz Band (Razzberry Jam) and the MEI Chamber Singers (singing in both the Chamber Choir and Jazz Choir categories). They have performed at the prestigious, invitational Festival of Gold in Anaheim (2010) and again are performing at the Festival of Gold in Chicago this spring (2012). With their jazz choir hats on, the Chamber Singers won Gold awards at the Lionel Hampton International Jazz Festival, including “Outstanding ‘A’ Choir (2007); as well as Superior at the BC Interior Jazz Festival (2005) and Surrey Jazz Festival (2008). The group has been honoured to perform alongside many celebrities in the BC Variety Club Telethon and more recently performed at GM Place in Vancouver, alongside internationally acclaimed performing artist, Josh Groban, on his hit song “You Raise Me Up” (2004). The choir often joins with the MEI Concert Choir in concerts like our recent concert with Canada’s tenor act, The Canadian Tenors (2007) and Tenore (2009 & 2011), another up and coming Candian tenor trio. The singers have been excited to perform the national anthems a multiple Vancouver Canucks games, a Vancouver Grizzlies game, and Seattle Mariners and LA Dodgers baseball games. They have made local splashes in 3 annual appearances on the MEI Float, singing and waving to over 300,000 parade watchers that attend the Roger’s Santa Claus Parade in downtown Vancouver, as well as appearing on City TV’s Breakfast Television in November 2007. They have entertained audiences in numerous Christmas concerts every year, including the spectacular Wall Ball at the Wall Centre in Vancouver and with the Concert Choir at the “Christmas at the Chan” concert with Trinity Western University’s choirs and orchestra.
The MEI Renaissance Singers, is a choir of approximately 30-40 singers in all grades who want to be challenged in a choir with a less demanding schedule, or want to hone their skills to prepare for a future audition for the MEI Chamber Singers. Rehearsals happen one to two mornings per week and students receive a 1 credit course on their transcript. The performance schedule has usually included 2 Christmas Concerts (including the annual MEI Christmas Concert), a couple of spring performances and a fantastic spring weekend trip to a festival in second semester. The 2010-2011 Renaissance Singers spent a beautiful sunny weekend in the BC Kootenays, while attending Festival Nelson last April and in the past have gone on trips to the Whistler Music Festival, the Sun Peaks Music Festival, and down to Seattle.
The MEI Junior Chorale is the grade 10 choir class in the music program at MEI Secondary. The Junior Chorale is open to grade 10 students and acts as a preparatory choir, developing voices for future membership in the MEI Concert Choir in grades 11 and 12. The choir has been very successful in past years at local festivals and a variety of performances and church ministry engagements. The Junior Chorale, along with other choirs, puts significant preparation in the annual MEI Christmas Concert and Spring Choral Concert.