High notes for music department
Ryan Jenkins, a freshman from Hillsboro, Ore., was one of four Oregon students selected to sing in the National Choir this year. The American Choral Directors Association assembles the National Choir, which performs at its annual national conference. Jenkins sent in an audition tape last October. Out of 1,400 applicants from around the nation, the association chose 304.
Jenkins will sing tenor in the Multicultural Honor Choir. The repertoire will include songs in Arabic, Delaware, Spanish, Baga, Tagalog, and English.
A National Association for Music Education panel in Virginia selected the university’s Symphonic Band and Concert Choir to perform at the All-Northwest Division Biennial Conference in Portland in February. Only five colleges from six states - Oregon, Washington, Idaho, Alaska,Montana, and Wyoming - performed at the event, and George Fox was the only school to have both its choir and band chosen.
Schools sent recordings to Virginia for review in a blind audition. Among others picked were chamber choirs from the University of Oregon and Eastern Washington University.
The February event drew high school choral and band directors from throughout the Northwest. "This really got our name out there," said Loren Wenz, choir director and chair of the Department of Performing Arts. "Many in the Northwest music community who hadn't heard of us before know who we are now."
This was the first time both the band, conducted by Patrick Vandehey, and choir were chosen for the conference.
Equality Ride plans visits
The Soulforce Equality Ride, a group of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender students and activist allies, has included George Fox University in its list of 32 Christian colleges and universities it intends to visit this spring. The stated purpose of Soulforce is "freedom for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people from religious and political oppression through the practice of relentless nonviolent resistance." The colleges to be visited - including Notre Dame University, Baylor University, and Seattle Pacific University - have policies that reflect the traditional, orthodox Christian position on homosexuality.
The April 5 visit to George Fox will be the group’s eighth stop on its West Coast route. About 25 riders are expected. Brad Lau, vice president of student life, says while the university disagrees with the group’s views on homosexuality, Equality Ride will be met with gracious hospitality. "Our goal is to engage in a civil discourse characterized by humility, love and grace, but also firmly planted in scriptural truth."