Wanted the experience and fun of singing
I have had many years of singing with school and church choirs but wanted the experience and fun of singing with a mixed group of singers who loved choral music as much (probably more) than I. I anticipated the opportunity to sing a wider variety of music in this setting.
I have been a fan of the WRS since their inception and have attended many of their concerts over the years, admiring the quality and skill of the group as a whole, and of course, the direction of Ben. He brings such a wealth of knowledge of music and skill in direction and interpretation of each piece. I am glad I finally took the plunge and jumped in. I have not been disappointed.
Director's knowledge, gifts and passion for music keeps me singing
I happened to be in Italy in 2002. I believe this was the same time that the Wolf River Singers were there, only I did not know it. My sisters and I accompanied my older sister and her choir there. The trip changed my life. The choir sounded so beautiful as they sang in those old cathedrals. I dearly love to sing and have sung choral music for most of my life. I purposed in my heart that I would locate a choral choir like that in Memphis upon my return.
I happened to be listening to WKNO radio, as was my custom back then. I heard a gentleman asking for all interested singers to come and audition for the Wolf River Singers. The person happened to be Ben Legett, Choral Director for the Wolf River Singers. I was thoroughly elated at the announcement and could not believe my good fortune in finding a choir that soon upon my return. I called for an audition, was accepted and joined the Wolf River Singers family.
Now, that is why I went. The reason why I stayed is all Ben Legett. I was so taken with his knowledge, gifts and passion for music that I have remained to this day a loyal Wolf River Singer.
Experience has been a learning one
I joined The Wolf River Singers, because the guy I was dating loved to sing and he was already a singer in the group. In my youth, I had sung in elementary school choirs and church groups. When I went through the adolescent voice change - I was flummoxed. My knowledge of four part harmonies was nil. My first experience with singing alto parts was with the WRS. I was an art major and was only exposed to classical music in college. I loved it.
So, my experience with the WRS was very much a learning one. A learning one that grew into enjoyment and joy in singing and hearing the finished product. Crucial to growing and learning was the bonds formed with my fellow singers - in particular, my sister altos.
Our trip to England and Ireland was such an experience - we were a tight group and we had one heck of a singing experience and a great deal of pride in our ability to do the concerts well. As a side note: In the 20 some years that I was a WRS singer- I had a number of health hurdles. Every single time, our director Ben Legett stopped in to wish me well. As another side note: Ben has an uncanny ability to chose incredible music for performances. Ben also has matured as a director and been flexible in his music choices to better appeal to our audiences.
...I guess the bottom line for me, was that my experience was a learning one. I sweated it out, pounded it out, and poured it out. While learning the music demanded my undivided attention and time - I was so very much worth it in the end. This art major learned to enjoy the choral art and what it made me feel when it all came together. The WRS was my family for the time that I was a singer. It took dedication, and it was so very much worth it.
WRS music helped me through a rough time
I first heard WRS when they came to my church and performed a program of beautiful music. There were 3 members of my church choir that were members of WRS at the time, so that made it extra special to me. I was so impressed with the music and it really soothed my soul during a rough time in my life. I just knew the Lord had sent them there to comfort me during my husband's illness and subsequent passing.
I spoke to each WRS member/choir members at my church, and told them how the much the music had blessed my heart, and each one said, come and join us when you can, we welcome new voices. After a few months I kept thinking about the group and felt led to try to become a member. I felt I needed an outlet to become a person on my own again, and begin a new life.
After 10 years being a member, I still feel blessed with each program, and amazed by the talents represented, making each performance into such a beautiful presentation, led by a very talented Director and musicians. God has truly used WRS to present music that is inspired and each program is well presented and each member gives his/her very best to make it so.