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Prairie Echoes attends festival

Published: Saturday, Oct. 6, 2012 5:30 a.m. CDT

Prairie Echoes Chorus of DeKalb, an award-winning women’s a cappella chorus of Sweet Adelines International, participated in the Youth in Harmony Festival last month, sponsored by the Rock River Valley Barbershop Chorus.

High school girls and boys from two school in the Sterling area and their teachers participated in this singing workshop held at Sterling High School. There were 105 girls and 50 boys.

During the day, five members of Prairie Echos Chorus, Cara Ebersole, Karen Stuedemann, Charleen McCracken, Sue Dirks and director Donna Bates, reviewed a cappella and vocal techniques in the barbershop style and the girls even learned a little choreography. That evening, everyone, including the teachers, shared their talents singing four-part harmony with a women’s group, singing “Swing Down Chariot,” and a men’s group, singing “A Wink and a Smile.”

Prairie Echoes and Rock River Valley Chorus performed a variety of music, including “Kokomo,” “Sister Act,” from Prairie Echoes, and “America” from Rock River.

The evening ended with the 2011 men’s district champions Waldorf Hair Company Quartet made up of Tim Pashion, Terry Ludwig, Craig Ahlgrim and Rich Hanson singing “I Wanna Live Until I Die.” The quartet closed the show with a zany rendition of “Cinderella.”

Music scholarships were given to one high school boy and one girl.

Prairie Echoes Chorus welcomes girls and women, ages 14 and older. The chorus sings a variety of music, including modern, showtunes, patriotic and gospel. Meetings are held from 7:30 to 10 p.m. Tuesdays at St. Paul Episcopal Church, 900 Normal Road, DeKalb. For a ride or more information, call 815-761-5956.

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