Chorus & Dance

Kids and teens of all abilities make up the Variety Children’s Chorus and have performed throughout the St. Louis area. Through Variety Dance, participants of all abilities learn new skills and basic musical theatre choreography, all adapted to their needs.

About Chorus

Variety Children’s Chorus and Variety Dance are free programs that provide a chance for an inclusive group of St. Louis-area kids and teens, ages 8 through 20, to sing, dance and perform, as well as make friends, build confidence, and learn new skills.

Youth with and without disabilities join together to form the Variety Children’s Chorus, which has performed throughout the St. Louis area and beyond, spreading Variety’s message of inclusion for all to hear. The talented group is led by experienced area directors and is split into three choruses.

2021 – 2022 Program

Chorus rehearsals are currently being held virtually
each Monday throughout the school year.

Variety Children’s Chorus Groups and Class Times:

Junior Chorus (ages 8 – 13) – 4:45 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Senior Chorus (ages 14 – 18) – 5:45 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.
Everybody Sings (ages 8 – 20) – 6:45 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

2021 – 2022 Variety Chorus Program Directors

Debby Lennon  – Musical Director

Debby Lennon is an experienced and talented vocalist, actor and teacher who has been featured across the nation. She has been a member of the St. Louis Symphony Chorus for 35 seasons and has been a featured soloist for multiple groups. She has also performed in multiple operas throughout St. Louis, has held roles in productions with the Muny, Stages St. Louis and many others, and has won multiple “Best Actress” awards. Debby played Ms. Andrew in Variety Theatre’s 2019 production of Mary Poppins and joined the Variety Children’s Chorus as a featured soloist in our 2019 holiday concert.

Debby is celebrating her twentieth year as adjunct voice professor and director of The Vocal Jazz Program and The Webster Jazz Singers at Webster University in St. Louis, Missouri. She is also a vocal coach at St. Joseph’s Academy and maintains a private voice studio. Debby is thrilled to work with Variety Kids again as the Variety Children’s Chorus director!

Caleb McCarroll – Assistant Musical Director

Caleb McCarroll studies at Webster University in the Music Direction for Musical Theatre program. He is an up-and-coming music director and accompanist based out of the Kansas City area. His main areas of focus include Sondheim and new works. As a pianist and vocalist, he is a frequent performer of new works, including instrumental chamber music and choral ensembles. Caleb has a heart for reaching the younger generation through music and the arts, and is excited to return to work with Variety Kids this year.

About Dance

Variety Dance is open to kids and teens of all abilities and is led by talented dancers and choreographers. During class, these professionals lead the groups in a wide range of warm-ups and musical theatre-style dance combinations, all adapted to fit each child’s needs and skill level.

2021 – 2022 Program

Dance classes are currently being held virtually
each Monday throughout the school year.

Variety Dance Groups and Class Times:

Junior Dance (ages 8 – 13) – 5:45 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.
Senior Dance (ages 14 – 20) – 6:45 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

2021 – 2022 Variety Chorus Program Directors

Dawn Gilbertson – Director of Variety Dance

Dawn Gilbertson is a dancer, choreographer, teacher, small business owner, volunteer and mother. She studied at Monona Academy of Dance in Wisconsin and has degrees in Finance, French and Dance from the University of Iowa. Dawn performed at The Muny for several productions and has been an instructor at COCA. She started performing with The Big Muddy Dance Company in 2011 and performed with them for seven seasons. Dawn has taught, choreographed and/or performed with Variety Theatre for eight productions.

Dawn currently sits on the board of directors for The Big Muddy Dance Company. She is also an active member of Variety Women. Dawn’s work with Variety comes from her desire to share the joy of dancing with others. She is excited to witness the commitment the kids have to singing, theatre, arts and everything they do.

Rebecca Hartman – Variety Dance Instructor

Rebecca Hartman is delighted to be continuing her work with Variety! She has been teaching all styles of dance for over five years now, and it has become one of her biggest passions. Along with teaching, Rebecca is a choreographer, dance captain, and musical theatre performer. You might have seen her in Variety Theatre’s ​2019 production, Mary Poppins,​ in the ensemble. Rebecca is currently pursuing a BFA in musical theatre from Webster University.

Auditions

Auditions for the 2021 – 2022 Variety Children’s Chorus and Variety Dance programs were held
in August of 2021 and the programs are now closed to new members.

Stay tuned for details about auditions for the 2022 – 2023 groups

View Auditions

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