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Ever See A Choir Of 400 Singers? Stockton Students Will Deliver Unique Performance This Week.

Rich Ibarra / Capital Public Radio

Stagg Teacher Mark Swope with Stagg High choir.

Rich Ibarra / Capital Public Radio

Four-hundred Stockton students will lift their voices together in song for a concert Tuesday night. Stagg High School’s choir, band and orchestra will all sing as one very large group for a unique live experience.

Choir director Mark Swope recently rehearsed part of the choir for the big night. It was a mix of songs, from oldies to Sam Smith, Tom Petty to the Beatles.

To student choir member Hammeeda Khan, it’s not just another class. “I feel like it’s a way of expressing our feelings. In the class, we become like a family over time,” she said.

For some, choir is a new experience. But for others, like Gavin Altheide, it started long ago. “My first choir was actually in second grade, so I’ve been singing all my life even when I was starting to talk. I really love music because it’s part of my life and especially choir,” he said.

Last year, Swope led 300 students in song, and he says 400 will give their audience an even grander performance.

“It’s very powerful. It really gives a whole different meaning to the style and kind of music when we perform it, and you have 400 voices singing. There’s definitely an energy and spirit to it, wonderful to experience,” he said.

And sometimes it will be just one voice — Hammeeda Khan — an operatic solo.

The concert benefits the Wellness Center of San Joaquin County for mental health. Admission is $5 and begins at 7 p.m. on Tuesday night at the Stagg High School gymnasium.

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