New choir director leading Park Rapids High School ensembles

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Park Rapids Area High School choir students are set to entertain at 7 p.m. Monday, Nov. 6 in the auditorium.

They are under the leadership of new choir director Wyatt Steinke. He's a 2017 graduate of Moorhead's Concordia College. This is his first year teaching.

"I'm originally from Brainerd, so not too far away," he said.

At Concordia, Steinke directed the vocal jazz group and managed the Concordia choir for two years each.

"I have a special place in my heart for jazz," he said. "If I had to pick a favorite genre, it would be jazz. I still love chorale music. I love classical music, but I do think jazz is probably my favorite."

Monday's concert features treble choir Choraliers and Concert Choir, plus selected soloists from the recent Minnesota State High School League solo contest.

"Choraliers will be singing a fun set featuring no two songs in the same language! They will sing a German art song by Robert Franz, a modern take on a traditional Latin text, a piece based on an Israeli folk song and a fast-paced song built around an English tongue twister," Steinke said.

The Concert Choir will perform four pieces.

"The first is a folk song from Mozambique and will feature percussion and soloists. Next, they will sing a ballad by Eric Barnum, a Minnesota native with familial ties to Park Rapids. This piece will also feature a violin solo. After this, we will perform 'Requiem,' a piece by Craig Hella Johnson written in remembrance of the 2004 tsunami. Finally, we will close with 'Soon-Ah Will Be Done,' a traditional spiritual composed by William Dawson."