“Because there’s one thing stronger than magic: sisterhood.“
Many factors contributed towards my week at PICFEST becoming one of the most enjoyable in my 13 years. As a chorister, I had the pleasure of working with conductor, composer, and professor, Dr. Angela Ramsey, as well as composer and musician, Moira Smiley. In these rehearsals, I found myself opening up through music, not only to my fellow choristers, but to students from different states (and provinces) ranging from the east to west coast. At PICFEST, I made several new friends and reconnected with old ones through humor and sisterhood. We’ve had countless unforgettable moments including being conDUCKted by Puddles, the University of Oregon’s mascot, and comical evening meetings.
As a chorister with Seattle Girls Choir, through PICFEST, I have grown as a person, socially, academically, and musically. Socially, as stated earlier, I have bonded with students from many different choirs including Bellevue Girls Choir, Allegro Choirs (KA), and the Oakville Children’s Choir from Ontario, Canada. Academically and musically, I have advanced in countless different forms. I have advanced in my knowledge of singing within a large choir, how to sub-balance the different parts in that large choir, and through my experiences peppering Andrea Ramsey with questions concerning her journeys through conducting and composing a variety of different tune’s.
Stronger than any of the stated factors, though, is sisterhood. Emphasized by Peter Robb from day one, the definition of sisterhood is “the feeling of kinship with and closeness to a woman or a group of women (Oxford Dictionary).” Within Cantamus, I feel that at PICFEST, the creation of an tight bond between girls occurred, more powerful than that developed at choir rehearsals. I am a (somewhat) social music nerd who has had to work at fitting into a group comfortably. At PICFEST, I was (and am still) surrounded by amazing, musical girls that I can connect with. PICFEST was an extraordinary experience and should be passed on to future Cantamus choristers through Seattle Girls Choir. As Isadora James famously said, “A sister is a gift to the heart, a friend to the spirit, a golden thread to the meaning of life.”
Ava’s cover letter to her essay:
Dear Mr. Gagiu–
I had a great time at PICFEST. I advanced within my social and musical skills through workshops and the building of new friendships. I made friends with many girls from Kansas, Washington, and Ontario, Canada. At PICFEST, I had countless moments that I will remember for the rest of my life. As a chorister, I feel that my time at PICFEST helped to strengthen my relationships with other choristers, therefore building a very friendly environment inside the choir. Cantamus choristers should have the chance to experience fun, humor, and sisterhood at PICFEST for years to come.