Alumni Spotlight: Jake McKim

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Alumni Spotlight: Jake McKim

We are proud of our boys, even after they grow up and leave the choir. Alumnus Jake McKim is the owner of Birch Street Music, LLC, specializing in A&R, Artist Development, and Digital Marketing Services. He shares about his experience with HBC and how it has impacted his life today.

Q: What years were you in Houston Boychoir?

A: 1989-1993

 

Q: Describe your most memorable moment in the choir.

A: Performing Mephistopheles with the Houston Grand Opera. I still remember the chills I had on stage.

 

Q. What did being a Houston Boychoir member mean to you?

A: It meant learning discipline, teamwork, the beauty of music, learning to tie a tie, and eat with proper manners – still lessons I live by today.

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Q: How did your experience affect your choices/pursuits in life?

A: It meant everything. Without the Boychoir, I would never have gone on to Johnston Middle School, High School for the Performing and Visual Arts, and gotten into the music business. I owe my entire career to Ms. Ashley for recommending the Boychoir, my mom for shuttling me to rehearsals, and my directors in the Boychoir for guiding me down that path. I’ve spent my career working with artists as big as Beyonce, Solange, Maddie & Tae, Chloe & Halle, etc. and I doubt I would have had that opportunity without the Boychoir.

 

Q: What is the most meaningful advice that you received in life that you would pass on to the boys of today?

A: Enjoy every moment. It goes by fast and you will miss it some day. While you’re in Boychoir, decide if you think music is in your future and start studying everything you can about the history of it, how it’s created, and if you see yourself as a performer, a teacher, or a behind the scenes guy. Determining that early will give you an advantage over everyone else who is still trying to figure it out. Then pursue it with passion!

 

We’re glad Jake (third from the left) finally learned to eat with proper table manners (his words, not ours) after this formal dinner on tour in 1992. Thanks for sharing, Jake!

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The stars came out to shine brightly on the Houston Boychoir!

Congratulations and Thank You!

Because of You — the 2019 Benefactor Luncheon raised over $75,000 to expand programming at Houston Boychoir!

On February 27th we gathered to honor Dr. C. Richard Stasney for the work he has done to advance the healing arts in our city and around the globe. Over 200 people celebrated Dr. Stasney and raised over seventy-five thousand dollars in contributions to the Houston Boychoir. These funds will serve to provide strength to the program and allow more boys to join us as we continue on our mission to build men of character through music.

 

Dr. C. Richard Stasney, Honoree

Apurva Thekdi, Crystal Wiggins, Dick Stasney, Margarita Rodriguez, Shani Saunders, and Sandra Guerra

Christi Sowell Harvey, Patricia Jones, Holly Lanier, and Helen Currier enjoy hearing the boys sing.

Greg Robertson, Nancy Haywood and Deborah Hirsch

Dr. Clint Doerr is serenaded by the entire Houston Boychoir. Happy Birthday, Dr. Doerr!

Sue Ofield, Ann Hendrix, Paul Ofield, Cindy Pack, and Carol Barndollar remember the Singing Boys of Houston.

 

We Are Because of You!

 

Our Olde Boys opened our season with a private performance for friends and supporters of the Houston Boychoir. Dr. Bud and Rachel Frazier were our gracious hosts and opened their lovely home for our family. Old friends and new friends gathered for cocktails and hors du and were treated to a private concert from the Olde Boys, directed by Keith Dixson, and a beautiful solo performed by Preston Parker.

Mrs. Merryman, Singing Boys Founding Director Paul Ofield & wife Sue, Mary Koenig & Ron Bertram

Ted and Nancy Haywood catching up with HBC Artistic Director, Carole Nelson

Fred Nevill, HBC Board President chats with Kelli Watson

 

Our family is strong, committed to promoting integrity, dedication, and responsibility – the very same values that we hope each boy will develop during his tenure in the Houston Boychoir. It is only with the generosity of our family and friends that we are able to achieve our mission of building men of character through music.

 

Please consider joining our family by volunteering at one of our upcoming events or by donating today!

 

We build men of character

How do we do this?  There are the rehearsals of course, each of which is a demanding 90 minutes of focused concentration. This is where an 8 year old begins his tenure in the choir, taught by music experts who understand the learning styles that are unique to boys. He will  tackle all the elements of music (rhythm, melody and harmony) and how to sing and how to blend as one voice. But this is only the “visible” part of the program.13177494_1192337600799295_1422001380546164117_n

Building anything of value takes time, attention to detail, opportunity and experience. At Houston Boychoir we offer those opportunities and experiences. Most recently boys attended Houston Grand Opera’s production of Carousel at the Wortham Theater Center. Here they experienced great singing, high quality production and the opportunity to interact with Houstonians who care about the arts. Boys dressed up for the theater and conducted themselves as gentlemen do.

On the first Saturday in May our Preparatory Choir took their annual Day Tour. On this trip they sang at a retirement community and witnessed how their gifts  of music impacted others on a personal level. From there, they stopped in Galveston at The Children’s Center, a place that operates to serve the homeless, the neglected, the abandoned, the abused or forgotten. They sang yes, but they have also spent weeks collecting gift cards, diapers, clothing, personal hygiene products, school supplies and more. Through this experience these boys they experienced the joy of giving as well as gained a deeper appreciation for their life circumstances.

These were two completely different experiences, each one designed to influence various aspects of the life of a man of character. I invite you to join us in our mission. You can volunteer, you can donate or perhaps you know of a boy who could benefit from a program such as this. The Houston Boychoir, it will change your life!

Visit our website and see how to audition.

Young men with a mission.

 

They Are Warriors

Caroling14He might be 8 years old or he might be 18, but every day he gets up and goes to school and then, 1 or 2 days a week after school he attends choir rehearsal where he learns the art of self discipline, of mental gymnastics, of precision  to detail, of nuance of language (both his own and foreign tongue), and of the physical stamina required to stand for long hours of rehearsal. He develops drive and the ambition to be better than he is. He learns how to be a team member, how to support his fellow choristers by knowing his part and by knowing what he is a part of. He learns how to take direction and he learns how to ask questions.

In addition to all of this, the boy gives up one Saturday a month to continue to add to his understanding of music, of teamwork and of himself. He must maintain excellence in all things: his grades, his conduct and his health. Then, come late November and December his schedule becomes the battlefield. He will participate in up to 20 performances, he will still have to take final exams or end of course work and when school is over and the concerts are done, he will take one more day to give to his community by spending 8 hours in the Houston Medical Center to give the gift of his music for patients, families, doctors, nurses and all hospital support staff.

In a few days these boys will begin the process again. They will happily come to rehearsal eager to see what new adventures will lie before them, adventures in music, in friendship, and in the journey we call life.

These are our future parents, educators, and leaders. We salute you singing boys everywhere!

Two Locations make Houston Boychoir twice as accessible and twice as fun!

 

Houston Boychoir is conveniently located in two areas of our city, making it even more accessible.

Houston Boychoir is conveniently located in two areas of our city, making it even more accessible

If you live outside the 610 Loop or north of Westheimer or 290 or I10, you will find our West Campus most convenient. It is a great place for multi tasking.  Run errands while your son is rehearsing or add steps to your Fitbit mall walking! We share our beautiful space with the Virtuosi of Houston Studio.

Memorial City Mall
303 Memorial City Way #235
Houston, TX 77024
Virtuosi Studio is in Memorial City Mall at the Target entrance near Macy's

Virtuosi Studio is in Memorial City Mall at the Target entrance near Macy’s

West Campus

Or you might find our Central Campus more convenient. In the heart of the city, it is located adjacent to Rice University and the West University Village at Christ the King Lutheran Church. The area is rich with opportunity.

Central Campus

Which ever campus you attend, our directors are top notch, the best in the field of elementary music and specialists working with young boys. You will find that when your son is engaged in singing, he is a healthier, happier boy and who doesn’t want that!

A Season in Preview

Fun in Robes at Bayou Bend

Fun in Robes at Bayou Bend

The upcoming 2015 – 2016 Season is taking shape

 October 4th 6:00PM Sunday – St. Thomas University, Sister Cities Opening Ceremony

October 11th, at 11:00 AM, First Lutheran Evangelical Church,

December 2nd 5:00PM Wednesday – MFAH Donor Party at Bayou Bend

December 10th 7:00PM Thursday – Texas Children’s Hospital Holiday Party at First Presbyterian

December 12 & 13 5:30 to 8:30 PM for the Heritage Society Annual Candle Light Tours atSam Houston Park in the St. John’s Church

December 20th 4:00 & 7:00PM Sunday – Winter Concert at First Presbyterian

January 31st 8:00AM Sunday – Church services at Gloria Dei Lutheran

February 6th 4:00PM Saturday – Sing 4 Life Concert at Grace Presbyterian

March 26, 2016, 5thAnnual Status of Boys Scholarship Luncheon, Junior League

April 10th at 5:00 PM, Concert for St. Philip Presbyterian Concert Series

May 15th 4:00 PM Sunday – Spring Concert at Moores Opera House, U of H

Church services at Christ the King, First Presbyterian, Grace Presbyterian

National Anthems for Houston Rockets and Houston Astros

Houston Boychoir Invited to Sing at TMEA

Congratulations to the Preparatory Choir and Holly Holt-Cabrera and Rebecca Seekatz. They have been invited to sing at the Texas Music Educator’s Association annual convention in San Antonio Texas. They are only one of 8 choirs in their division to be invited to perform. Coming in February 2015.

Preview the 2014-2015 Season

Join us for the 2014-2015 Season as we provide a rich cultural and quality education that will remarkably transform, rambunctious boys into quality young men right before your very eyes. You will witness random energy channeled into a force for good.

November

Christ the King Lutheran Church
November 9, 2014

December

Annual Heritage Society Candlelight Tours
Sam Houston Park, Downtown Houston
Friday & Saturday December 12 & 13, 2014
6:00 PM to 9:00 PM

*Christmas Party
Saturday December 13, 2013

Houston Boychoir Winter Concert
First Presbyterian Houston
Sunday, December 21, 2014
4:00 & 7:00 PM

January

First Presbyterian Houston
Sunday, January 11, 2015

February

Sing4Life
Grace Presbyterian Church
Saturday, February 7, 2015 – 4:00 PM

Gloria Dei Lutheran Church
Sunday, February 8, 2014 – 9:30 AM

TMEA Invited Choir
Henry B. Gonzales Convention Center
San Antonio, Texas
Thursday, February 12, 2015

March

St. Matthew Passion by J. S. Bach
Bach Society Houston
Sunday, March 29, 2015 – 6:00pm

April

Annual Status of Boys Scholarship Luncheon
Junior League Houston
Thursday, April 2, 2015 – 11:15 AM

St. Paul’s Cathedral Choir of Men and Boys from London
717 Sage Road
Houston, Texas 77056
Friday, April 24, 2015

May

52nd Annual Spring Concert
University of Houston Moores Opera House
Sunday May 17, 2015 – 4:00 PM

Houston Boychoir takes on Houston Astros
Minute Maid Park
Sunday, May 31, 2015 – 1:10 PM
http://houston.astros.mlb.com/ticketing/index.jsp?c_id=hou

*Private Performances

Houston Boychoir Wins Home At Houston Arts Alliance

Selected to participate in the Residency Incubator Program, Houston Boychoir is now an official resident of the Houston Arts Alliance office space. There they will receive in-depth professional development opportunities, a yearly organizational evaluation, and planning resources to address core competencies: mission clarity, effective leadership, financial viability, organizational sustainability, sensitivity to constituencies and markets and the establishment of realistic and achievable goals. The award comes with $15,000 for three years for technical advancements and staffing.