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Delco Christian School Wins B101 Choir Contest

Both the high school and middle school sang their way to the grand prize for the school's music program.

Members of the Delaware County Christian School Middle School Girls Select Choir perform Wednesday night with the Philly Pops Orchestra at the Kimmel Center in Philadelphia. (Credit: Bob Byrne)
Members of the Delaware County Christian School Middle School Girls Select Choir perform Wednesday night with the Philly Pops Orchestra at the Kimmel Center in Philadelphia. (Credit: Bob Byrne)
Written by Bob Byrne 

Delaware County Christian School's High School Concert Choir and the Middle School Girls' Select Choir have each won the B101 Christmas Choir Competition.

That's a grand prize totaling, $10,000 for the music program.

The high school winners were announced Friday and DC took the final $5,000 prize singing "Carol of the Bells," according to B101radio.com.

The school choirs recorded their entries to the B101 Radio Christmas Choir Contest in November and it is the first year Choir Director Renee Bussey entered her choirs in the competition.

Wednesday night it was time for the 48 members of the Delaware County Christian School Middle School Girls Select Choir to take center stage at the Philly Pops concert.

They sang their winning song On Christmas Night  acapella, receiving enthusiastic and sustained applause not only from the professional musicians in the orchestra seated behind them, but from the crown in the violin-shaped, acoustically near-perfect concert hall.

It was not only magical for the sixth, seventh and eighth grade girls but for their school as well. The entire DC middle school has 184 students. The choir was competing against Haverford Middle School and Phoenixville Area Middle School Choirs to win the contest. By comparison, one of the Phoenixville Area Middle School choirs has 244 members.

What Gave DCCS the Edge?

While DC is a much smaller school than the larger public schools, the alumni are fiercely loyal boosters and when the call, actually the emails, went out asking for votes, DC's extended community responded with tens of thousands of votes. Choir members who spoke to Patch in the giant holding room reserved for them in the Kimmel Center echoed what Bussey and DC Middle School Principal Chuck Young's comments. "We had people in the Philippines, Scotland, Japan, England, the Dominic Republic" and many other nations around the globe voting.

The result was a night featuring backstage meetings with the B101 Morning personalities who presented the middle school with a check for $5,000 for the school's music program. 

At intermission the Philly Pops publicity director took six lucky students backstage for photos with guest orchestra conductor Davis Charles Abbell and Soprano Angela Brown. Both spent several minutes sharing music stories and some laughs with the DC middle schoolers.

One other point was not lost on the students or school administrators. Of the finalists in the middle school competition, only DC's entry was non-secular. For the students and school administrators it was a chance to tell a small part of the Christmas story. "As a Christian School we're allowed to sing about Jesus' birth... where a public school may not be able to do that," Young told Patch.

For the girls it was an experience they'll never forget. When the announcement was made on the radio the excitement was electric.

"I was on the school bus when I got a text," explained choir member Jordan. "I jumped up and down!"

Seventh grader Katie from Radnor said "It was really cool" when she woke up to the news last Friday. "I screamed, but i didn't scream as loud as my parents did!"

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