The student news site of Hopkins High School

A new face to the Choir program: Katie Irvin

Sep 15, 2017

The Hopkins choral program has a reputation for excellence.

Last year, between the five choirs, the HHS choir’s won 22 awards ranging from individual awards, to small and large ensemble awards.

The HHS Concert Choir, a junior and senior choir, was the only high school in the upper Midwest that was invited to perform and sing to 1200 people at the Luther College Dorian Choir event last year.

Sadly, Phillip Brown, long time HHS choir director moved after and left his legacy behind him, after a successful final year at HHS.

In 2011, Brown was named Outstanding Young Choral Director of the year by the American Choral Directors Association of Minnesota.

Last year, he was named the 2012 Director of Note by “Choral Magazine Director Magazine,” one of 11 choral directors nationwide to receive the honor. Brown was awarded the 2013 American Choral Directors Association of Minnesota Award for Creative Programming, making it three awards in three years for the Hopkins educator. Brown also won the 2016-17 American Prize in Conducting – Youth Choir Division..

After Brown made a move to teach in the Bloomington school district, the HHS choir program looked to a new person to uphold the prestigious reputation that they have built.

Hopkins choir students were sad to see Brown go, and very anxious to see who the next choir teacher would be.

Many people were interviewed in the process, but one person stood out for the job position because of her open personality, love for music, and music education. That interviewee was Katie Irvin.

Katie Irvin has been teaching music for 8 years in the Shakopee school district. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in music and french education from Luther College. She is currently working on her Master’s Degree in educational leadership from St. Mary’s University. She was ecstatic when she received the teaching position.

“I am big on everyone can sing,” Irvin said. “I Kind of have a long and proud mentality,”

The Concert choir won seven awards last year and will be taking an annual trip to Florida this year. Irvin heard about the annual choir trip, and optimistically booked tickets for the class as soon as possible.

“I was excited, I have been on other tours with other schools before,” Irvin said.“I remember traveling as a highschooler as well and creating lasting memories,”

Irvin is very excited to begin creating lasting relationships with students, and plans to get to know kids by using techniques like calling kids by name. She likes the community aspect of choir and is looking forward to growing from it.

“Hopkins is very big on building relationships with students and teachers, and staff alike,” Irvin said.

Music has never been about prizes, awards or money for Irvin. The reason Irvin got into music, was because her brother started a backyard musical back called “Backyard Productions” at her home in Maple Grove. It started out small, with neighbors, friends, and family, and ended up getting attendances around 1,000.

Backyard Productions included the Irvin family members and other kids who wanted to perform, from places as close as the neighborhood and as far out as Minneapolis and Coon Rapids.

“I loved that so many kids came together all summer long and rehearsed to put together a musical and that was so much better than them sitting at home and being bored,” Irvin said.

Backyard productions has always put all of their profits into a scholarship fund through Sing Minnesota to send kids to arts camp. The Irvin family is still active in the fund and sends around five kids a year to arts camp.

“I teach to have students share my experience and hope that I can facilitate for them,” Irvin said.

Irvin is looking forward to share her love for music and her musical experience with her students.

“I think we should remember we sing to share a common goal and that we love to sing,” Irvin said. “It’s not about that we are the best but is is that wae have a really great time creating incredibly wonderful music together.”

The Royal Page • Copyright 2024 • FLEX WordPress Theme by SNOLog in