As Young Naperville Singers enters its 27th season of song, the choir celebrates over two decades of excellence in choral music education. Young Naperville Singers was founded in 1984 by the late Helen Grubbs as an activity dedicated to promoting choral artistry among boys and girls. The mission of Young Naperville Singers is to provide a choral experience for every child who demonstrates basic music ability and a strong desire to sing. The pursuit of excellence through singing develops critical thinking skills, self-growth and a heightened level of self-esteem, all essential attributes in today’s world.
Young Naperville Singers consists of five ability based choirs, with members ranging in age from six to seventeen years old. Our satellite choir in Oswego, Young Fox Valley Singers, under the direction of Jennifer Helwig, expanded to two ability based choirs this season.
It is the belief of the staff, parents and Board of Directors of Young Naperville Singers that through singing the heart is touched, the mind is stimulated and the spirit is set free. That vision has enabled the choristers to experience a variety of musical opportunities such as performing with the American Boychoir; participation in the Des Moines International Children’s Choir Festival and other Midwestern festivals; performance collaborations with professional guest artists such as Judy Collins and Natalie MacMaster; being featured singers in corporate presentations; performances with opera companies; tours of the Western United States and Washington, DC; and the premieres of commissioned works by Mary Goetze, Lee R. Kesselman, Malcolm Dalglish, James Mulholland, Betty Bertaux, Rollo Dilworth, David Brunner, Daniel Brubaker and Stephen Paulus, renowned composers of children’s choral literature.
In past seasons, the Young Naperville Singers were invited to sing at the Rotary International Centennial Convention at McCormick Place and also traveled to Niagara Falls, Canada, where they participated in the Niagara International Music Festival. Highlights for past seasons have included performing for the American Choral Director’s Association Convention, singing at Carnegie Hall in New York and participation in the Sing A Mile High Children’s Choral Festival in Denver, CO.
In July 2009, to cap off our 25th anniversary celebration, members of the Concert and Chamber Singers participated, by invitation, in the Pacific Rim Children’s Chorus Festival in Hawaii. Next July 2011, 42 singers will represent the Young Naperville Singers at the Coastal Sound International Choral Festival in Vancouver, BC Canada.
An important priority for Young Naperville Singers is involvement with the Naperville community at large and the Naperville arts community in particular. The choir has sung at various venues ranging from the Martin Avenue Apartments, North Central College, Naper Settlement, to the Rotary Sunrise Mardi Gras Benefit Gala. The choir has performed with the Naperville Chorus, the Naperville Men’s Glee Club, the Naperville Municipal Band, the Women’s Chorale of North Central College and the DuPage Opera. As an out-reach program, Young Naperville Singers hosted its 9th Annual Boys Power Sing for community and local school boys in September with Ryan Rimington and Jay Kellner as guest clinicians. The workshop was developed to motivate and rally young male singers. Membership in Young Naperville Singers and Young Fox Valley Singers is by audition and is open to all children regardless of race, gender or physical ability.