For 20 years, Select Ensemble, Hammond’s premier auditioned choir, has provided a backdrop for celebrating as a school community, sharing student talent, and transcending language barriers in international venues through the gift of song. We have experienced the magic of music and had a front row seat as students step from one stage to the other with ease.
Twenty-three years ago, Steven Hillard was hired to serve as Director of Choirs. His ability to connect with students in meaningful ways through humor and a culture of high expectation has been key to building this premier choir program. Following a successful trip to Washington, D.C. to sing with the National Philharmonic Classic Choir in 2004, it soon became apparent that Hammond’s stage should also become the world’s stage, so Steven pitched the idea of international travel to then Head of School Herb Barks. The following year found Hammond center stage in Austria and Germany, singing in celebrated venues, and leaving their hearts and songs at one of the world's most notorious concentration camps; thus, setting the tempo for Hammond students to see half a dozen European countries.
As the group continued to traverse the globe and grow, so did its popularity. While school choirs are traditionally not associated with athletes, Select Ensemble is the exception. Over the years, a position in the choir has become as coveted as the roll of quarterback or team captain.
A Select Ensemble 20th Anniversary performance has been planned for January. Select alumni are invited to join us as we reminisce and reconnect! View our gallery at this link.