John Tebay knew he wanted to be a choir director at the age of seven when he joined the school chorus.
“I loved the interaction of a group of students learning to sing together in unity and coming up with a unified product,” Tebay said.
Every now and then Tebay will get messages from past students giving updates on how their music careers are going. Many of Tebay’s students have gone to become choir directors at schools and universities, some have even gone on to sing at various professional opera companies.
In the past, the choir has sung at many different locations throughout the country and the world. Their most recent trip was to Austria in the summer of 2011 for a choir festival.
The Fullerton College Choir was the only representative of the U.S. and they ended up winning first place.
Today, the chamber singers are working hard to prepare for their potential trip overseas this summer.
If they are accepted, they will traveling to Germany for the Marktoberdorf International Chamber Choir Competition.
For the students, being able to sing and travel to a another country is an experience like no other.
“It builds strengthens the relationship between the students,” Tebay said. “Traveling internationally is very educational and expands your understanding of human life and to see how other cultures live.”
Arely Huerta, choir singer, explained that her experience traveling with the choir was a life changing experience.
“We had the chance to not only visit the biggest tourist areas in Europe, but we visited the countryside and many small villages where we got to meet the people who live there,” Huerta said. “It made me appreciate choral singing a lot more. I really loved Germany and its historical significance in music and I would like to return to learn more.”
According to Tebay, being able to have a positive experience for the students, not just as a teacher, but as a person is one of the greatest gifts.
“I really enjoyed having an effect on students’ lives and being able to provide everything I could that would be of help to them,” Tebay said. “I can’t wait to get here, not only do I get to make great music, but I get to make a difference in someone’s life.”
The Fullerton College Concert Choir and Chamber Singers will present their first concert of the semester on Oct. 29.
Prices are $10 for adults, $7 for students and $5 for children.
All proceeds from this concert will go towards helping to pay for this summer’s trip to Germany.