Young choir prepares to share stage with Foreigner

Select Kamloops School of the Arts students will share the stage with one of the world's top-selling bands of all time

Select students at Kamloops School of the Arts will soon have a chance to perform with an arena rock band that is ranked among the all-time best-selling artists in the world.

Foreigner will perform at Sandman Centre on Feb. 24 and will be joined by a student choir group from Kamloops School of the Arts for their hit song I Want To Know What Love Is.

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“We’re really excited to have an opportunity to perform within the community on such a large stage,” said KSA music director Steve Weisgerber.

Weisgerber is overseeing the choir while its usual director, Ellen McMillan, is on leave.

He said the school was approached by Foreigner’s manager in late 2018 about the possibility of performing on stage with the band. Seizing the opportunity, the school began preparing right away.

Because of the size of KSA’s choir, auditions had to be held and 25 students, mostly from Grades 10, 11 and 12, were chosen to take part.

“When they hear major events like this coming into town, they get very excited about the opportunity to perform,” Weisgerber said.

For some students taking part, it’s not their first time on the big stage. Weisgerber said that because KSA doesn’t have a catchment area, some students in their choir are those from Brocklehurst Middle School, who had a chance to perform with Johnny Reid in 2016.

“They have some experience already in going up on the stage with a big crowd — and they pass that enthusiasm onto other kids who have never done it,” he said.

Foreigner has nine studio albums, seven live albums and has released 47 singles since Englishmen Mick Jones and Ian McDonald were joined by American singer Lou Gramm.

The band saw most of its success in the ‘70s and ‘80s, so the students — who are ages 15 to 18 — would be forgiven if they don’t know the band. But Weisgerber said some did because of their parents.

“So some knew who they were and some didn’t, you just say hey, this is a band, let’s listen to a few of their songs and they get grooving into it,” Weisgerber said.

“Music is so circular, right?”

The band has also pledged to donate $500 to the KSA choir group and plans to sell CDs at the concert to benefit their charity partner, The Grammy Foundation.

Foreigner takes the stage at Sandman Centre, 300 Lorne St., at 7 p.m. Tickets are $73 and available at Ticketmaster.

© Kamloops This Week

 


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