Chamber Singers practice new songs, participate in group activities on retreat

Zoe Dutton

Chamber Singers gathered at Camp Wrightwood in the San Gabriel Mountains for their annual retreat Sept. 27-28.

Students rehearsed new songs and played volleyball as a group activity. At the end of the retreat, students gathered in a full circle to share their feelings and experiences during the retreat and discuss their expectations for the year.

The retreat was chaperoned by choral teacher Rodger Guerrero and piano accompanist Sara Shakliyan.

“We had just a fantastic time,” Guerrero said. “Choirs really have their own, unique personalities, and it’s important to self-discover who they are early on in order to progress as a musical unit. The singers come from such diverse Harvard-Westlake areas because Chamber Singers is one of the few specific activities that includes sophomores, juniors and seniors.” Even though the students are very different, Guerrero said that the retreat brought the group together. 39 of the 41 Chamber Singers attended the retreat.

“The retreat was a great bonding experience,“ Delilah Napier ’15 said. “We got so much work done and it was so great to work together in a non-school environment. I feel like I learned so much more about my peers.”

The tradition of the Chamber Singers retreat began in 2002 in an effort to bring the choir closer together.

“My favorite part always is the final discussion,” Guerrero said. “The singers sit in a huge circle in our rehearsal room. Each member then speaks to their retreat experience, what Chamber Singers and music in general mean to them and their hopes and dreams for the year.”