didn’t seem to have
any trouble getting
in front of the
crowd. She kept the
kids engaged and
them to join her
when she sang
Rudolph the Red-
Nosed Reindeer and
Happy Birthday. The
to go both ways. In
enjoyed herself so
much she might use
the experience as
the basis of her senior project next year.
“As a Kenan
music scholar, I’m
surprised we don’t
have any commu-
nity service require-
ments. So for my
senior project I’m
working with the
schools to make this a regular thing.”
The teachers of the Head Start classes
are excited about the idea of having visitors
like this on a regular basis. Cheryl Johnson,
who teaches the 3-year-old class, plans to
use opera music regularly during class quiet
“I can’t believe they sat still for 35 minutes. They usually can’t do it for more than
10 minutes,” Johnson said. “An experience
like this is great for them because it gives
them more exposure and builds on their
The kids’ enjoyment of the sing-alongs
was obvious, and maybe not unexpected.
But their faces also showed the appreciation of the heavier stuff. At the end, Fernandez asked her son what his favorite part
was. Was it the Disney songs? Singing
Happy Birthday to their classmate? Nope.
“The opera,” he said — as if it was the
obvious answer. And then he was off to
continue his school day.
— Brecken Branstrator
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