Choir seniors Sophia Bates and George Fullerton reflect on experience in award-winning program

Mike Baldus, Reporter

Seniors Sophia Bates and George Fullerton did not expect the last time they’d sing alongside their choir family to be in late March. Bates was a leader in the alto section and Fullerton is a well-experienced member of the bass section. 

“I was really upset, well not really at first, I kind of expected it,” Bates said. “It didn’t really hit me until like literally on Monday that school was over.”

Choir director Juli Dick and the choir are hoping to get back together to celebrate the seniors. Usually there is a spring concert where all the seniors have their final goodbye and awards are given out. 

“I just miss them all so much and like our support and love for each other,” Bates said. “And we always have each other’s back in a time like this where you need you, someone, to have your back.”

The students in the choir are still checking up on each other mostly, but quarantine has taken its toll. 

“We’re checking up on each other and making sure that we’re okay,” Bates said. “The group chat is always blowing up and we’re sending memes to each other, but I definitely think that we’re drifting apart. We all have our own mind, our own families, our own struggles.”

Bates wants to continue with a choir in the future. She wants to keep music close to her heart at Hope College.

Fullerton is in the same boat as Bates. He is frustrated that the state festival was canceled

“I feel like everything is really kind of just up in the air right now,” Fullerton said. “We could do some things in the future when we’re allowed to again but I have no idea right now.”

Fullerton enjoyed his choir experience.

“I enjoy all the small parts of it,” Fullerton said. “I like warming up and I like just talking with the other people in the choir and I like rehearsing. I’m sure other people have some things that they wouldn’t miss but for me personally, I’m a fan of it all.” 

Next year, leaders and newbies will have a different experience than Bates and Fullerton but they both wish them the best of luck.

“Try and enjoy rehearsing, and all of the parts of rehearsing, and sight reading, and warming up and everything and at least try to get into it,” Fullerton said. “If you like it, then keep doing it and sign up for choir every year. And if you don’t like it after a year then don’t sign up for next year. I would definitely really try and get into it.”

Fullerton will be heading out of state for college to Lake Forest College. He won’t be majoring in music, but wants to keep it around for years to come.

Bates and Fullerton are both disappointed this is how their senior year will end.

“I think we all need to stick together,” Bates said, “We all need to try our best to listen to the governor’s orders and then just pray that it all goes away soon.”