METROPOLITAN METHODIOS ANNOUNCES FORMATION OF YOUTH CHOIR
It has long been the dream and vision of Metropolitan Methodios to establish a Metropolis Youth Choir which would attract our young people from the communities throughout New England. “Music, both religious and cultural are very important aspects of our Greek Orthodox Heritage which we must teach and bequeath to the young generations,” Metropolitan Methodios has often said. Planning towards making this dream a reality began on Thursday, March 6, when Metropolitan Methodios met with clergy and choir directors to discuss the formation of a Youth Choir for the Metropolis of Boston. Among those in attendance were Fr. Demetrios Costarakis and Choir Director Donna Spanos from the Transfiguration Parish in Lowell, Heidi Mason, the President of Federation of Greek Orthodox Musicians of Boston and Choir Director at the Annunciation church in Brockton, MA, and Fr. Christopher Foustoukos and Youth Choir Director Tony Vatousios from the St. Vasilios Parish in Peabody. All present agreed that a Metropolis Youth Choir would enhance the participation of young people in our churches and the continuation of our rich tradition and musical culture. The following expectations were discussed:
Age: Anyone, age 8-18 will be welcome to join. Participation will be especially encouraged for Middle School and High School students. Teenage voices tend to be stronger with a wider range and volume. Also, elementary school voices must be part of our Youth Choirs as they will gain the experience and ability to lead.
Regional Choirs: Each district of the Metropolis will have their own Youth Choir represented from all churches of that region. They would meet as a Metropolis of Boston Youth Choir joining children from other regions.
Music: The Youth Choir will perform liturgical and non-liturgical music. The music will be chosen by all the regional Choir Directors and rehearsed by the regional choirs. Liturgical music will include the Divine Liturgy and well known hymns from our Byzantine hymnology. Also, the choir would learn Greek and American folk songs from different regions.
Rehearsals: The Youth Choir will rehearse at least monthly to ensure progress and retention of music learning. To be fair to the different regions of the Metropolis, choir rehearsals will take place at different central locations to encourage participation of churches throughout the Metropolis.
Performances: The Youth Choir would perform for various functions and events during the year. The choir would chant regularly during liturgies at churches from throughout the Metropolis. Also, the choir would sponsor a Christmas and a Lenten Concert each year. Additionally, the choir would perform at other functions sponsored by communities of the Metropolis.
Retreats: Members of the Youth Choir will be invited to attend our Metropolis of Boston Summer Camp, a wonderful place to have fun and sing. Youth Choir members would be eligible for camperships to attend one of the sessions of the summer camp. Besides performances in New England, we hope to showcase the Metropolis Choir throughout the United States and Europe. The formation of a Metropolis of Boston Youth Choir is indeed an exciting venture!
To succeed we will need the cooperation of the clergy, choir directors, and families in the parishes. Community Choir Directors will meet in the near future to organize our Metropolis Youth Choir. Please address any questions and suggestions to Tony Vatousios at firstname.lastname@example.org