In all of the choirs here at GRCHS we seek to praise God with the gifts He has given us. In addition we foster a love of good choral music, and develop life skills that enable singers to continue using their talents well after high school.
The Choral Music program at Grand Rapids Christian HS consists of three choirs that meet every day - Chamber Chorale, Men's Chorus, and Women's Chorus. All of the choirs perform in four major concerts each year. In addition to our concerts, all of our choirs participate in District Choir Festival in February where they have consistently earned mostly Superior ratings. Those that receive Superior ratings typically go on to State Choir Festival in May. In the last few years all of our groups have qualified for State Choir Festival and those that have gone have come away with Superior ratings and perfect or nearly perfect scores.
Women's Chorus is open to all high school girls. In this choir we work at building the foundation of good choral singing by devoting time to: developing a healthy, supported, free of tension choral tone; the study of theory; sight reading using the Solfege moveable “Do” system; proper breathing techniques. This choir performs music in three and four parts.
Men's Chorus is open to all high school men. The goals and objectives are similar to the women’s group but we also focus on issues specific to the male voice.
Chamber Chorale is a smaller, select ensemble of juniors and seniors. Membership is by audition only. This choir averages 25-30 performances a year that include participation in church services, singing for community groups, school assemblies, etc. This group has received many awards for excellence. Some highlights: in 2006 and 2010 they received a perfect score from all three judges at Michigan School Vocal Music Association State Choir Festival; in 2006, 2010, 2011, and 2012 the group was selected through a blind audition to perform at the Michigan Youth Arts Festival as one of two “Outstanding Choirs” in the State of Michigan; in 2009 the Chamber Chorale was selected to perform at the Michigan Music Conference.
Candice Sytsma is a Southern California native who moved to Grand Rapids in 2009. She holds a Bachelors degree from Chapman Univesity (CA) and a Masters from Western Michigan University, both in Music Education. She has taught choral music at Grand Rapids Christian Schools since 2011, ranging from 5th through 12th grade. Candice enjoys teaching students to have a lifelong love and appreciation for singing as well as to experience the connective community of an ensemble. She currently lives in Byron Center with her husband and two young sons and enjoys the outdoors and gardening.