WEST PALM BEACH, FL – On Friday, November 6th Keeping The Blues Alive Foundation staff presented Berean Christian School with a $1,000 award to purchase uniforms for the high school choir to wear when they represent the school. Accepting the gift were music teacher Linda Middleton and headmaster William Dupere.
“How the singers present themselves is how they feel about themselves,” said Middleton, who learned about Keeping The Blues Alive Foundation from high school teacher Jon Iverson whose wife works for Grammy-nominated blues guitarist Joe Bonamassa. The foundation is Bonamassa’s music education nonprofit headquartered in Deerfield Beach.
“Because of your passion and Mrs. Middleton’s passion it brought us to our passion, which is making opportunities like this happen,” said Shawn Hagood, president of the foundation.
Middleton, who was influenced to become a music teacher by her pastor’s wife, majored in vocal performance and earned a double certificate in music and classroom education. Her teaching style relies heavily on a cappella (singing performed without instruments) so that students can hear themselves and how their voices blend.
“Choir is about your team – just like an athletic team – where we’re all counting on each other,” said Middleton, who also uses chime bells to help her students both understand the science of sound and build confidence in their singing abilities.
Middleton returned to Berean this year after being away to care for her mother in North Carolina. In her music classroom she emphasizes reading music while preparing the choir to perform for the community in December. The students are learning a special song for each of the four Sundays of Advent that lead up to Christmas.
“Rebuilding a choir is not easy in today’s world because there are so many types of music kids get into,” said Dupere, who hopes the choir will thrive at the school. Both Dupere and Middleton believe that experiencing and sharing music are integral parts of Berean’s mission to empower and enrich students in all areas of their lives.Keeping The Blues Alive Foundation works with teachers, students, music industry professionals, nonprofits, and other community organizations to address the decline of school music programs. For more information contact Shawn Hagood at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit keepingthebluesalive.org. If you wish to donate to KTBA click here. ##