Nikki Carlson Havre Daily News firstname.lastname@example.org
Twenty-one Havre High School girls have received the highest honor that can be given to a musical group in the Northwest, and are seeking support from the community in order to follow through on the subsequent opportunity. On Feb. 13, 2009, the HHS Belles Voix Choir will perform in the biannual Northwest Regional Convention of MENC: the national organization of music educators in Spokane, Wash. "I'm just really excited and proud of these girls, and for the opportunity to go," Belles Voix director Pat Ryan said. "This is the highest honor any high school music group can achieve," assistant director Lynn Ryan added. Lynn Ryan said Belles Voix sent in an audition tape and were selected based on the three contrasting categories, languages and styles of music they sung. The Belles Voix is the only group in the state that was invited to perform in the concert. "With us not being one of the bigger schools ... I think that gives kudos to the type of kids and community we have," Lynn Ryan said. The convention will host music educators from Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Washington and Wyoming. Elementary, middle school, high school, college and university choirs and bands from the Northwest will perform during the convention. According to the Web site www. Menc.org, MENC is the world's largest arts education Organization and the only association that addresses all aspects of music education. To become a member of the Belles Voix, girls must audition for a spot. The Belles Voix practice every Tuesday night in the choir room of the high school. Since they received word about their honor, they have been rehearsing selected material in preparation of the convention. Their selected music pieces are in French and Latin. Lynn Ryan said they wi l l al so be s inging "Allelujah," from Finland. Belles Voix, which means "beautiful voices" in French, will also perform in Missoula and at the Capitol's Rotunda in Helena on their way out to Spokane. Lynn Ryan said the group is trying to raise money to cover traveling expenses. Those wanting to donate to assist the Belles Voix Choir with travel expenses for the convention can drop the money off at HHS office in care of Pat Ryan. Checks should be made out to Havre Public Schools with a notation for Belles Voix Choir.