Ensign Youth & Children’s Choirs
Ensign has had a Children’s Choir for just over a year but we are making several changes to the program by splitting the choir into a Youth Choir (ages 14-18) and a Children’s Choir (ages 9-13). We are also have a Training Choir for ages 7-8. Previously the choir has performed with Ensign Symphony & Chorus at Benaroya but we are adding on to the program so that the youth and children will have even more performance opportunities. The children will be part of a choir that:
- Makes professional YouTube music videos
- Sings as back-up singers for special guest performers
- Uses music to help other children that are homeless or struggling
- Sings music from movies like The Greatest Showman, Newsies, and more
- Sings testimony building songs
- Performs on stage with an orchestra and huge chorus at Benaroya Hall
- Sings “The Star-Spangled Banner” on the field at big sporting events
Rehearsals will take place every Saturday morning in Redmond, WA. There are two sessions that run from September-January and February-June. There is also a summer camp in Redmond in late August.
The choirs are a not-for-profit and is funded by tuition fees. Tuition is $195 per session. First session is Sept. to Jan. Second session is Feb. to June. Multiple children in one family receive a 20% discount for the second and third children participating. There are a few scholarships available to help with tuition costs. Wardrobe fees will be approximately $85.
Sharla Dance, Music Conductor
Sharla graduated from BYU in Music Education, choral conducting emphasis. Her post-graduate studies include how the child’s brain learns music, advanced choral conducting, and piano improvisation. She has Kodaly and Orff certifications, as well as advanced vocal training for teaching the teen voice. Sharla has written a book called “To Teach a Child a Song” and teaches workshops all over the U.S. to Primary music leaders about good teaching principles for teaching Primary music to children. For the last 30 years, Sharla has conducted youth choirs, ranging in number from 70 to 180 youth, depending on the year. Sharla has a private music studio teaching piano, music literacy, and voice, called “Dance, Sing and Play.” She loves conducting choirs and teaching music to children.
Stephanie Shipley, Assistant Conductor
Stephanie graduated from the University of Utah with a Bachelors degree in Music Education, choral emphasis. She taught choir at Indian Hills Middle School in Sandy, Utah, for three years, where she also worked with the school musicals. She has also substitute taught in the Issaquah School District for music teachers in elementary school. Stephanie also taught piano for 7 years.
She was a member of the Utah Symphony Chorus for three years and has been a member of the Ensign Chorus since 2014. She has been a primary chorister, ward choir director and nursery music leader, and enjoys singing with her trio at the Bellevue South Stake Nativity and at various sacraments meetings.
Rachel Alldredge, Assistant Conductor
Rachel graduated from Ricks College with an Associate’s Degree in Vocal Performance/Music Education and later received her Bachelor’s Degree from Brigham Young University-Idaho. Her passion is helping children develop advanced musical skills at very early ages. She is a Let’s Play Music Instructor for children ages newborn to 10 years old. She has been involved in various capacities in her community as a teacher and performer, such as Bright Lights of Broadway and the Federal Way Chorale. She conducts the Children’s Nativity Choir in the Maple Valley Stake and is a performing member in the Ensign Symphony and Chorus.
Erin Egbert, Assistant Conductor (Training Choir)
Erin studied at UVSC and USU in Utah and is currently a Pediatric Dental Assistant. She believes music can have a very calming and healing effect on anxious patients. Music is her first go-to in easing any type of stress or gearing up for big events and special occasions. She feels so blessed to play and sing with your children at rehearsals each week. It helps her to get creative and feel like a kid again.
Amanda Schwartz, Choir President
Amanda Becstead, Executive Secretary
Colette Moss, Treasurer
For questions regarding the choir, please contact EnsignYouthChoir@gmail.com