Something happened on the way to the a cappella ensemble. Composer and conductor J.D. Frizzell has some wisdom to share about building relationships with your singers and their parents, and how to maintain a supportive choir program. So before they settle into discussing the mechanics of starting an a cappella ensemble from scratch (catch that episode on Friday), Ryan and J.D. talk about One Voice, Maroon 5, babies, and explosions.
Highlight to Tweet: “Ryan, it was like the school exploded, from the inside out.” – J.D. Frizzell
- Dr. Frizzell started with what he knew, a jazz ensemble. When that didn’t catch on the way he wanted, he tried a cappella, and it was an instant hit.
- The students connected strongly with the material, and were eager to practice it on their own.
- Their desire to get every nuance of their music right has also transformed the rest of the choir program, as those students bring that same drive and work ethic with them to rehearsal with other choirs.
- A successful a cappella group could breed resentment. Head that off by being equally invested and present with each of your ensembles.
- Parents want and need to know that you are competent, in control, and that you care. If they know those “3 C’s,” parents will be your assets and allies.
J.D. Frizzell is the Director of Fine Arts at Briarcrest Christian School in Memphis, TN. He graduated in May 2017 with a doctorate in choral conducting from The University of Kentucky. J.D. has had best selling compositions around the world, with music published by Santa Barbara, Lorenz, Heritage, Colla Voce, Alfred, and others. A leader in the contemporary a cappella movement, he’s the co-founder and President of The A Cappella Education Association. His group OneVoice has been on America’s Got Talent, performed at ACDA, collaborated with The Swingles and New York Voices, won the Macy’s All-School A Cappella Challenge judged by Pentatonix, and recorded with SONY.
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