Columns & Blogs

Bellingham children's choir on way to Carnegie Hall

Practically any musician’s dream is to perform at New York City’s Carnegie Hall.

Now a group of local musicians age 9 through 16 might have their collective dream come true. Bellingham Arts Academy for Youth’s Bellingham Children’s Choir hopes to perform there June 27.

To that end, BAAY director David Post has scheduled a “New York Trip Variety Show Fundraiser” from 7 to 9 p.m. Saturday, April 25, at BAAY Theatre, 1059 N. State St. Admission is only $5, but he won’t turn down any other money, as all proceeds will go toward the trip to the Big Apple.

“This is a once-in-a-lifetime kind of experience for these young people and we are going to make the most of it,” Post says. “Our students will perform as part of a mass choir made up of choirs from throughout the United States.”

In addition to the Carnegie Hall performance, the 39 students would also get the chance to meet other choir members from all over the United States and to hear the other groups, says Post. They would also be evaluated and coached by master teachers.

Along the way there will be plenty of fun, including a trip to the Statue of Liberty, the Empire State Building, Central Park, a performance of the musical “Wicked,” he says.

On June 28, the choir will give their own performance at a New York church.

Songs performed by the mass choir at Carnegie Hall include “Ave Verum“ by Philip Stopford, “The Roof” by Andrea Ramsay, “I Sing Because I’m Happy” by Rollo Dilworth, and a commissioned piece by composer Ola Gjeilo.

“We also get to perform a piece all by ourselves, which is likely to be ‘See the Gypsies’ by Zoltan Kodaly,” Post says.

The students need help from the community to make the trip a reality, he says. There would be 77 people going on the trip; the 39 students, five chaperones from BAAY staff, and parents of the students. The trip costs $1,730 per person.

All of the fundraising goes to help pay for the students’ expenses. The parents and chaperones will cover their own costs.

“We’ve done a survey and concluded that we need to raise $6,500 in order to be able to allow all the students to go on the trip” Post says. “Funds are due by May 11.”

Post hopes to make a big chunk of the money at Saturday’s variety show. Another way to support the trip is to come to BAAY and bid on one of the silent auction items, on display in the lobby until June 1. Additionally, there is an online campaign where people can donate. All donations are tax-deductible, Post says.

More details: email, 360-441-0728 or 360-306-8531.

Jam time

There’s a new group in Bellingham called The Bellingham Jam that focuses on bluegrass and swing music, and its first event is Saturday, April 25, in Fairhaven.

The group is by invitation only, via a subscriber list. That means if you are on the mailing list, you will be invited, according to the genre(s) you select when you ask for an invitation.

The webpage,, explains the concept with a sign-up button for the email distribution list for upcoming jams.

Photos of Bellingham sought

The City of Bellingham and Whatcom Museum are celebrating the 10th year of sponsoring the “Essence of Bellingham” photo competition. It’s an opportunity for amateur and professional photographers of all ages to submit photos that capture the essence of Bellingham and document the history of our community.

Winners receive special recognition by Mayor Kelli Linville and the City Council. Photos will be displayed in City Hall, featured on BTV10 and the city’s website, and added to the museum’s photo archives. Entries are being accepted through May 1. Details: