Dickson school choir raises money to perform at Carnegie Hall - WSMV News 4

Dickson school choir raises money to perform at Carnegie Hall

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Some Dickson County High School students are singing a happy tune. The school's choir is getting ready to take a trip for a once in a lifetime performance.

It's all because of some amazing generosity and a teacher whose career has come full circle.

Cindy Freeman has been teaching students how to sing in perfect harmony for 40 years. So when a former student, Gerald Grey, was asked to direct a cantata at Carnegie Hall, he knew just who to call.

"It's a great learning opportunity for our students. I guess, it's what you would say intercurricular as well, because it introduces them to so many wonderful things," said assistant choral director Michael Meise.

The beautiful music of Biblical readings and Walt Whitman's poetry was only half the challenge though.

"It ain't cheap to go to New York. This whole thing roughly costs $2,000 per student, and that's a big chunk of money for we folks down here in Dickson," Meise said.

That's when the fundraising began, starting at a local gourmet cookie company.

"He had some special orders that had to be filled, so he hired temporary workers. We had students and parents going in at 5 and 6 in the morning to this company and wrapping cookies and getting paid. And that money then went to the trip," Meise said.

The choir also set up a website and received $20,000 from an anonymous donor to top off their funds at about $160,000 - enough for 63 students to head to New York.

"What's been so amazingly touching is the alumni who have sent in donations along with these wonderful letters and cards about how much this program affected their lives," Meise said.

The Dickson County choir is set to perform at Carnegie Hall on Feb. 16.

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