At 7:00 p.m. on Saturday night, 200 students from all over the world will be taking the stage at the RBB Große Sendesaal in Berlin for the annual High School Honor Choirs Festival. The festival was established by the Association for Music in International Schools (AMIS) and has taken place annually since 1976. The event gives participating students the opportunity to work with renowned conductors and to travel to international schools for an intensive three day program.
Joseph Curtis is the chairman of the fine arts department and choral director at the John F. Kennedy School in Berlin. He’s traveled with students in the AMIS honor choir to perform in places like Luxembourg, Brussels, London, and Abu Dhabi, but this year he looked forward to showing visiting students the culture Berlin has to offer.
Curtis says the hope is that students will develop a kind of harmony when they perform together on stage, and form long-lasting friendships. He observes that “there’s something magic that happens in rehearsal. When the people are all very committed to what they’re doing and they’re making something beautiful together, there’s a team aspect: everybody needs the rest of the choir.”
Photo by Sylvia Cunningham.