The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa


May 24, 2014

Singers put call out for A Capella members

CLINTON — A group of former Clinton High School students are seeking the voices of past A Capella Choir members for an alumni choir.

Growing up, Rachael Vopatek was actually very shy — something she said would surprise most people who know her today. This slowly changed after she joined the A Capella Choir her sophomore year.

"It just gave me confidence, I guess," Vopatek said.

Vopatek, along with a multitude of other students, took choir under the direction of the late John DeHaan, whom she described as "the most amazing choir director, teacher, mentor." With his instruction and the bonding experience of being in the choir, she said she slowly gained confidence.

"For me personally, that was my favorite part of high school," Vopatek said. "And it seems like it was the same way for most people who were on it."

Another choir alumnus, Dan Ivory, had the idea of former choir members coming together for a community concert and put out a call for help on Facebook at It was through this Facebook page that a committee was formed. The committee met and began sharing thoughts about the A Capella Choir.

"We realized in talking that we all had these same memories of choir," Vopatek said. "I guess we all just looked back on that time as our favorite time in high school."

The committee decided to ask for former choir members to join in a July 20 concert at Vernon Cook Theatre, with proceeds going to Habitat for Humanity. Participants will meet July 18 at the high school for a day-long rehearsal, filled with music and reminiscing. Those participating are asked to give $50 to pay for food, drinks, music, the venue and the creating of a CD of the July 20 performance.

After the committee works on finalizing details, its biggest concern is finding volunteers for the choir. Vopatek said they hope to have at least 100 singers to create that full, beautiful sound. So far, about 30 people have signed up.

"We really want this to happen," Vopatek said. "We want people from any year. It can be someone who graduated 50 years ago or last year."

Select members of the current A Capella choir also will attend.

Anyone interest in joining the alumni choir is asked to e-mail by June 1. The message should include the person's name, year they graduated and the part they sing.

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