Alexandria City High School Titans Choir
The Alexandria City High School Titans Choir returned to live, in-person performances in Fall 2021. After a successful Winter Concert, the choirs swept Choral Assessments receiving Superior ratings in all categories. Spring brought a fun-filled trip to Busch Gardens where the choirs brought home five trophies including the Grand Champion trophy. They ended the season with a wonderful, well-attended Spring Concert.
The Titans Choir has a stellar track record when it comes to competing. Under the direction of Theodore Thorpe III, the choir has consistently received “superior” grades in their competition performances. In the Spring of 2019, the Titans Choir was one of 7 choirs across the country selected to perform at the renowned 2019 Music for All National Festival in Indianapolis, Indiana. In 2018, the Choir competed at Disney World’s Music Festival and won Gold and Silver Awards. In 2017, the Choir was selected to be the “showcase” high school choir for the Virginia Music Educator Conference (VMEA) in Hot Springs, Virginia.
The Titans Choir provides a medium for performing choral music in the school and throughout the Alexandria City community. ACHS’s choral program is comprised of 120 students that are a part of four distinct choir groups: Concert, Mixed, Advanced, and Competition Choir. All students learn to create an individual vocal sound and contribute to an ensemble choral sound. The choir repertoire covers many styles from classical to pop from different periods and ranges in difficulty from III-VI based on the Virginia Choral Directors Association rating system.
Beyond choir competitions, the talented and passionate director, Mr. Thorpe is all about enabling students to lead, teaching responsibility, teamwork, discipline, and providing a sense of belonging through the shared experience of singing together.
Why does singing matter for learning? Science tells us that when choirs sing, hearts beat as one! This is the key finding of researchers from Sweden’s University of Gothenburg who studied the heart rates of high school choir members as they joined their voices. Their findings, published in Frontiers in Neuroscience, confirm that choir music has calming effects on the heart — especially when sung in unison.
Who are we? The choir is from Alexandria City High School, which is the only public high school in the City of Alexandria, the largest in Virginia, and one of the most diverse in the country. Our students represent not only Alexandria but the world, speaking over 100 different languages. When we sing together we embody unity in diversity! And our hard work has been recognized! In addition to our multiple competition awards we have sung for multiple presidents, dignitaries and celebrities, on national television, for the opening of the National Museum of African American History, and at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.
When it is not competing, the Titans Choir sings for special occasions, like the Dedication Ceremony of the National Museum of African American History and Culture on September 24, 2016, where we sang for three U.S. presidents and many other dignitaries and celebrities. Over the last ten years we have sung on nationally televised productions on TNT and CBS-TV respectively, with current music sensations Maxwell, Yo-Yo Ma, Mariah Carey, Jennifer Hudson, Diana Ross, Scotty McCreery, Miranda Cosgrove, Demi Lovato, Matthew Morrison, and Justin Bieber. The Choir is proud to say that we also sang at The John F. Kennedy Center for President Clinton, President Carter, and President George W. Bush, honoring the service of President George H.W. Bush.