Mens choir hosts 600 high schoolers for Men’s Day Out

California sophomore Cole Riel, Baylor Men's Choir member, sings with high school audience members following a brief concert in Jones Hall on Tuesday afternoon. Liesje Powers | Multimedia Editor

By Brooke Hill | Staff Writer

The Baylor Men’s Choir hosted around 600 high school boys for lunch and a rehearsal on Tuesday afternoon. It was the 14th time the mens choir has hosted Mens Day Out, but this was the largest turnout they’ve ever had.

“This is one of my favorite events each year,” Men’s Choir Director Randall Bradley said. “I love getting to see so many young men enthused about singing. I am hopeful that singing with over 600 other young men will inspire them to continue singing throughout their lives. The Baylor Men’s Choir is committed to encouraging other men to sing, and this event is a way in which the group seeks to fulfill this part of their mission.”

The day started with four part sectionals at 11 a.m., followed by a lunch that was supposed to consist of pizza on the porch of the McCrary music building. However, right as lunch was about to begin, rain started pouring down.

Austin sophomore Lucas McWhirter said he was impressed by how willing the high school guys were to get the pizza off of the porch and into the building before it got ruined.

“We had all these big plans,” McWhirter said. “We were going to do a flash mob for them, sing a couple songs, it’d be really fun and cool. But then of course it started raining out of nowhere and so all of our pizza that was outside had to be quickly somehow brought inside. I just loved the initiative of the high school guys to follow instructions really fast. We were kind of in a panic because as soon as you lose control of a big group like that chaos can break out, but we didn’t lose control, and in fact the high schoolers helped us move tables inside, which I thought that was incredibly mature. I just love when people come together and work together like that.”

After lunch, the men had a mass rehearsal in Jones Concert Hall. The music they rehearsed was selected by Bradley, and some of the schools are likely to use the music in their fall programs.

“One of the best things about mens choir is just the amount of diversity we have, to where when you walk into a room with over 600 high schools boys, that can be nerve wracking, just trying to lead it,” McWhirter said. “The first thing I noticed was just how awesome the high schoolers were, and our guys being leaders in that kind of position so that the high school boys saw an example of how to run a rehearsal and the respect peers gave each other during the rehearsal.”

High schools represented at the event included Midway High School, China Spring High School, Montgomery High School, Temple High School, Belton High School, Robinson, High School, Gatesville High School, Lorena High School, and all the high schools in the Fort Worth Independent School District.

Baylor students and high school students alike cherished the opportunity to come together to share their love of music.

“It was overall a beautiful performance that we did,” McWhirter said. “It was pretty dang magical being in the middle of it and to hear 600 voices singing in unity.”