North Dakota, with a population of approximately 758,000 (Census Bureau 2016), is the fourth least populated and fourth least densely populated state in the US. It is in the capital city of Bismarck (metro population 130,000) that the Central Dakota Children’s Choir has created a thriving community of young singers who are enriching and strengthening the social fabric of the metro area and serving as cultural ambassadors for the state. The choir program has grown to include six different choirs of over 300 singers in grades 2-12 from 47 schools around the region.
The choirs perform nearly 40 concerts in schools, churches and other venues annually for approximately 15,000 people and sponsor several music education programs throughout the year. Their members come from a variety of backgrounds and attend private, public, and homeschools. According to its website, “Central Dakota Children's Choir's mission is to provide a unique choral education and experience to the children of central North Dakota, to enrich the artistic community, and to serve as ambassadors for our state through music and education.” The group offers tuition waivers to make the program financially accessible to students from a variety of socio-economic backgrounds. Because the choir has been around for nearly twenty years, they have graduated a broad base of alumni who continue to return each spring to join forces with the other choristers.
Learn more about the work of the Central Dakota Children’s Choir by watching the video below.