Spencer Dawson discovered his love for music in his senior year at high school, when he joined the choir at Carl Junction High.
It was then, the junior vocal education major, discovered he had a passion for music.
Dawson said his teacher, Hope Rogers, made him want to explore what music had to offer down the road.
Little did he know this would soon grant him the opportunity of a lifetime: his acceptance into the Oxford Choral Summer Singing School.
His application included his performance resume and an audition cut of two different selections: Vainement, ma bien aimée by Édouard Lalo from the opera Le roi d’Ys and I’ll Sail Upon The Dog Star by Henry Purcell.
Soon he was notified that he was accepted, traveling to Oxford as part of a 26-voice ensemble June 30 to July 7.
“Getting to study early music at Oxford is a once in a lifetime opportunity,” Dawson said. “A lot of early English choral music originated there and it will be good to get to the heart of it and use that to teach my future students one day.”
Each day, Dawson and 25 other students will study a different time period of music, with everything leading up to the recording of music at the end of the week, as well as a performance.
Throughout the week, there will be three rehearsals for each day, and if there is time after the last rehearsal, Dawson hopes to explore Oxford.
For now, Dawson is preparing for the experience. He should receive the music in the coming weeks.
Dawson said his favorite part of performing, is when he prepares the choral works.
“When that’s all under your belt and you start to shape the music is when it comes to life, and that’s the beauty of it,” he said. “Singing for me is a different and vulnerable way to connect with individuals. It’s a surreal experience.”
He is excited, because the experience is an international program.
“There’s a very good chance I’ll be interacting with people who don’t even speak English,” Dawson said. “The cool thing is that everybody has to learn the same notes and rhythms, and when you put it all together, you’re saying the same thing.”