American poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow wrote, “Music is the universal language of mankind.” The members of the Puget Sound Adventist Academy (PSAA) choir agree. The unique experience of being a part of this Kirkland group is led by Walla Walla University graduate and music aficionado Elton Zebron, assisted by his wife and PSAA English/Spanish instructor, Anika Zebron.
Through a repertoire rich with gospel, ethnic, pop, jazz and classical pieces, students learn complex vocal arrangements enhanced with choreography. While exceptional music is key, an overarching goal of the PSAA choir is to witness to their community with their enthusiastic sets.
In addition to church performances, local events have been wonderful ways to connect with the community outside of the church. At this year’s Seattle Center Winterfest, a Christmas concert series hosted at the historic Armory, students performed for a large lunch crowd, bringing holiday cheer with a Christian focus.
Yearly tours have also provided unique opportunities for the PSAA choir to take their show on the road where invaluable, life-changing connections have been made.
“One of my favorites is a concert we were able to do at the Lloyd Center Mall in Portland, Ore. Setting our stage in the food court during lunch, we were amazed at the response — by the middle of our set, there was a crowd of 50 or more, and it kept growing,” recalls Zebron about the impactful tour event. “One woman shared she had felt impressed to go to the mall that day and had no idea why — she believed the concert was why. We’d planned to share a happy moment with shoppers and went away feeling so blessed by the deeper connections. The students were very touched.”
This spring, the choir especially anticipates performing at Maranatha Church’s Each One Reach One community service day on April 9. This event will raise money for homeless services and evangelistic efforts in Seattle. Later in April, the PSAA choir and band will head to Washington, D.C., for a grand tour organized by Craig Mohr, music department head and band director.
PSAA’s choir looks forward to continuing to witness and share the message of happiness, love and salvation through the language of music. For upcoming performance dates, visit the PSAA school calendar at psaa.org.