Young Naperville Singers (YNS) is a premier community-based children’s choral organization located Naperville that includes singers from all over Chicago’s western suburbs.
The organization began in 1984 and today, led by Executive Director, Angie Johnson, is composed of ten ability-based choirs, with over 400 boys and girls participating in grades 1 through 12. Through world-class vocal instruction and diverse musical opportunities, Young Naperville Singers provides a unique cultural experience; often performing at North Central College’s Wentz Hall as well as other venues across the United States and around the world.
As the stay-at-home order went into effect in March, YNS had to adjust their programming and take their instruction online. Knowing how music feeds the soul and the important benefits it has on young people’s mental healthy, through the use of Zoom technology, the choral directors continued to hold practice with their choirs on the same schedule as they would have done in-person. This transition to virtual practices, also allowed YNS to add more one-on-one instruction and integrate more music theory into the programming. They were even able to virtually bring in accomplished professional singers and composers to teach their youth singers.
According to board president, Neveen Michael, while it was hard not completing their 2019-20 season altogether on stage they celebrated their graduating seniors with drive-by parades and social media shout-outs. And, importantly, there are lessons learned as a result of COVID-19 that will impact the way YNS delivers music excellence to their students going forward. The ability to be able to bring in outside professionals and connect with other choirs across the country is a silver lining of the pandemic.
More from Spotlight
Watch more interviews with local nonprofit organizations serving the Naperville area.
Neveen Michael, Board President