Generational gaps between the young and the elderly, as well as the school and the community will be bridged during the seventh annual Pittsburg Multigenerational Choir concert at 7:30 p.m. this Thursday in the Bicknell Family Center for the Arts.
This concert will bring together the Pittsburg Multigenerational Chorus, under the direction of Pittsburg High School Choir Director Susan Laushman, and the Southeast Kansas Symphony Orchestra, under the direction of Raul Munguia.
The concert will also feature Southeast Kansas Strings’ program, String Madness, which is a workshop organized by Pittsburg State University’s String Department which pulls together high school students from Pittsburg, Lawrence, Olathe, Fort Scott, Independence, Riverton and Carl Junction. These students have rehearsed and will perform in apposition to the Southeast Kansas String Orchestra.
The main objective in bringing together high school students and elderly community members is to bridge the generational gap between the young and the elderly, and possibly even to give less-fortunate kids a role model to look up to.
“We just have so much to learn from our elders,” said Laushman. “So many of our high school students do not have an active adult in their life and so some of my community members are now parent figures to some of these kids, because they don’t have enough of that going on elsewhere.”
The concert will also feature a procession led by National Champion Bagpiper Griffin Hall from Kansas City, who will also perform two of his compositions at the concert. Some of the pieces the Southeast Kansas Strings will perform include: “Serenade” by Elgar, “The Devil Went Down to Georgia” with the Men’s Chorus and Dr. Munguia on fiddle, and “El Vito” with the Women’s Chorus and Stella Hastings, soprano soloist, and Nicholas Mendoza on castanets.
The concert will be held inside the Linda and Lee Scott Performance Hall and is free and open to the public.
“I’m proud to be in charge of this program,” Laushman said. “It’s such an amazing experience and until you do it, it’s kind of hard to put into words. It’s the highlight of our year.”
Tyler Koester is a staff writer for The Morning Sun. He can be emailed at firstname.lastname@example.org.