The Dansville Chamber Singers were given the top rating after an evaluation on May 24.

The Dansville Chamber Singers were given the top rating after an evaluation on May 24.

The Dansville Chamber Singers and conductor Adam Potter traveled to Lancaster to participate in the New York State School Music Association Choral Major Organization Evaluation Festival.

This elite chamber choir of 24 student vocalists is the most select musical ensemble at Dansville High School.

For NYSSMA Major Organization events, ensembles must prepare three pieces of similar difficulty, at least two of which must be listed in the NYSSMA Manual, a directory of musical literature widely recognized for its educational and artistic value.

The manual grades each composition on a difficulty scale of one to six, with six being the greatest complexity.

After performing three level six songs in front of a small audience, the Dansville Chamber Singers were awarded a Gold rating by adjudicators Jack Sternisha of SUNY Fredonia and Kenneth Fick of Niagara-Wheatfield Middle School — a prestigious honor for the small choir.

This was out of the three possible ratings of bronze, silver and gold.

The group was judged on how well they performed in the categories of tone (quality and clarity, purity of vowel, blend, projection and consistency); intonation; balance; technique (facility, breathing and posture); accuracy and execution (rhythm, pitch and attacks and releases); diction (clarity of consonants and correct and consistent vowels); interpretation (dynamics, style, tempo, phrasing, expression and projecting the mood); and influencing factors (discipline, appearance and appropriate choice of music).

This NYSSMA event wrapped up a successful and fulfilling academic year for the Dansville Chamber Singers.

The ensemble rehearses once a week after school and also presents occasional early morning and nighttime rehearsals.

This year, in addition to participating in Dansville High School’s winter and spring choral music concerts, the Chamber Singers presented two concerts at St. Peter’s Church in Dansville, performed in the Dansville Lions Club Annual Show and participated in the Houghton College Invitational Choral Festival, where they were the featured high school choir in the final concert and joined with the Houghton College Choir in its production of Joseph Haydn’s “The Creation” with full orchestra.

Anyone interested in sponsoring a performance with the Dansville Chamber Singers should contact their conductor, Adam Potter, at Dansville High School.