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October 24, 2005

Ball in their court

Loveland Herald Reporter CO):

When the five members of Ball in the House belt out Stevie Wonder’s “Superstition,” they don’t just sing the lyrics. They provide the bass lines and horn parts — all with their voices. On Friday, the Boston-based “mouth band” shared some tricks of a cappella singing with six boys from Berthoud High School before Ball in the House’s evening performance at the Rialto Theater. “Girls always show up for us,” commented group member Dave Guisti. “Hanging with guys is really cool.”

The choral students later joined the singers on stage to perform “Superstition” and “My Girl” by the Temptations. “It’s a huge opportunity to perform on stage with nationally recognized talent,” said Kim Akeley-Charron, Loveland’s cultural events coordinator.

Whether they bring students to an a cappella singing workshop, send a world-percussion ensemble to play at a school or introduce aspiring writers to poet Billy Collins, the Thompson School District and the city have long partnered to bring cultural opportunities to children. Last school year, the district received a National Golden Achievement Award from the National School Public Relations Association for partnering with the Rialto and the Loveland Museum and Gallery. “It has been a focus of mine since I started at the theater,” Akeley-Charron said.

Sometimes, grant money pays to send the performers to schools. Other times, they offer affordable rates for students or schools, Akeley-Charron said. Performers and artists often like to share their work with young people when they go to different towns. In turn, the students encourage their families to attend community performances, she said. It’s a win-win for the performers. “If you’re traveling a great distance to do your show, you want to make it worth your while,” Akeley-Charron said.

Posted by acapnews at October 24, 2005 8:59 PM