Tracey Edson, the new choir director, was just hired. For the past month, the choir program at ACA has not had a teacher.
Several students interviewed expressed great excitement and happiness that Edson is here. Ashton Scott, a Junior, expressed feelings of surprise that Mrs. Edwards hadn’t returned, but says he is still committed to making the choir program fun. Lauren True, a Junior, says that Edson is “enthusiastic and gives direction without being controlling, which I like.” Emily Bowers, a 6th grader, excitedly said that Edson is “really fun.”
Jon Cheskin, the orchestra teacher, recommended Edson to ACA. He has a long list of experience, including work with colleges and children’s community choirs. Edson mentioned he was looking for a community to invest in, and Julie Swanson, lead teacher, said “we’re really happy that we’re going to be the community he’s going to invest in.”
The director, Seanna Bloemer, said that the school was looking for someone “who comes with a vision that shares our same vision as a culture for music, which is that all students should have access to music.” Swanson agreed, “He’s a perfect fit.”
Edson heard about ACA through Jon Cheskin. Edson assumed he wouldn’t be able to take the job because of scheduling difficulties, but seriously looked at it later. He wasn’t actively searching for a place to work, but he thought he could make it work in his schedule and ACA seemed to him like a lot of fun. Edson thought he could fit into ACA well, and he’s enjoyed his time here so far.
The previous choir teacher, Suzanne Edwards, left before this school year began. The search for a new director lasted almost a month into 2019-20 school year. Edson spoke to the difficulties of coming in so late. He said “The challenge is trying to get things together so the students are served by getting into substantial things as soon as possible.” He said that “normally the first day of classes everything is prepared; the music is chosen, the syllabi are written, and the classroom rules are set.” He said that those things he will “just have to attach on the go.”
Classes in the month before had been run by substitute teachers. Now with Edson in place, the choir program can really begin. Edson said that he’s “determined to get things as solidified as possible so the students can have as musically solid an experience as you can.”