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TAHS senior Melody Garthwaite qualifies for State chorus

Maybe Roy and Diane Garthwaite had an idea when their daughter was born that this day would come when they named her Melody. Their daughter, a Tyrone High School senior, reached the pinnacle in high school chorus last weekend by qualifying for State Chorus.
Garthwaite accomplished the feat by qualifying in the top-four chairs in the Alto I section during competition at the Pennsylvania Music Educators Association Region III festival last weekend in Clearfield.
“It all started in October with pre-auditions for District chorus,” said Tyrone High School choral director Catherine Young. “There were over 400 kids who auditioned and 75 in the Alto I group. They cut it down to 25 who qualify for Districts. At the district level, they try out again and they take 12 to Regionals. The top four from Regionals qualify for State Chorus.”
Garthwaite was joined at the Regional Chorus Festival by 10 other Tyrone students.
Alicia Rodriguez and Erika Latchford qualified for Regionals in Soprano II; Stephanie Catich, Melody Garthwaite and Kesha Ellenberger qualified in Alto I; Morgann Davis and Wendi Taylor went to Regionals in Alto II; Cory Jones and Tommy Bradford qualified as Tenor I; Morris Reese qualified as Tenor II and Shane Gherrity as Bass II.
“These 11 talented young musicians have worked extremely hard to have advanced as far as the regional chorus level,” said Young. “They deserve both our congratulations and appreciation for representing our school and community in such a high manner.”
The highlight of the weekend was when Garthwaite was selected to participate in the State Choral Festival in Hershey April 9-12.
The audition is not an easy process. The students are given ten pieces of music to learn, and they are told to sing two of the ten for their audition.
“I went in to Regionals hoping to make it to states,” said Garthwaite. “I had put in a lot of time to learn the music. You don’t know what the competition level is, so I was very surprised to make it to states.”
Garthwaite auditioned with the pieces, “Walking on Green Grass” and “How Lovely”.
The Tyrone senior has been singing her entire life.
“I always sang in church growing up,” said Garthwaite. “I joined choir in sixth grade. It seems like I have been singing for an eternity.”
“Melody is most deserving of this honor,” said Young. “She is one of the most dedicated, talented and self-motivated students that I have taught during my 31 years at TAHS. It is always a thrill, not only for the students who qualify for States, but also for me to see all of their hard work result in such a great honor.”
Melody is the daughter of Roy and Diane Garthwaite of Tyrone.
“I think my parents are even more excited than I am,” said Melody. “They have been telling everyone they know. They are extremely proud.”
Brett Keith was Tyrone’s last qualifier for State Chorus in 2000.
Garthwaite will continue her education at Liberty University in Virginia where she will major in Music Education.