Welcome to another fantastic year! I am very excited to have your student in my class this year and am looking forward to a year full of learning, growth, and development. This is my third year at Everett High School after a two year leave of absence to earn my Masters in Music - Choral Conducting from Western Washington University and I am very excited to continue implementing my new skills as a conductor.
About Sarena Wiltse, choir director
To create a safe and fun learning environment where students learn how to sing, alone and in an ensemble, almost any style of music using healthy vocal techniques to ensure a lifetime of being able to sing.
My mission statement is accomplished by daily vocal exercises which teach healthy singing habits based on the science of vocal pedagogy, teaching students to hone their individual voices in order to sing as an ensemble with excellent balance, blend, appropriate tone for the piece, accuracy and expression.
Education: I earned a B.A. in Music and a B.M. in Music Education (choral focus) from the University of Washington in 2003. In September of 2003 I was hired as the vocal music teacher at Eisenhower Middle School, in the Everett School District, where I taught for 11 years before moving to Bellingham to earn my masters. At Eisenhower I directed two curricular choirs, mixed choir and treble choir, as well as Centerpiece Jazz Choir (a before school club), Marimba Mojo (an after school xylophone ensemble), and when needed, team taught beginning band. While at Western Washington University I sang with the top auditioned choir, Concert Choir, assistant directed the University Choir, studied advanced choral conducting with Dr. Leslie Guelker-Cone, studied vocal pedagogy (the mechanics of the voice), taught first year aural skills in music theory, started and directed the Viking Vocal Jazz Club, among many other studies.
My vocal passion lies in jazz, though I am also very passionate about singing in excellent choirs. Since graduating UW I have performed in Skagit Valley Chorale and Cantabile of Skagit Valley under the direction of Janet Skones-Hitt and sang alto in the Seattle Jazz Singers for six years under the direction of Frank DeMiero. I also have a great passion for percussion and play tenor and bass drum in Scottish Bagpipe Bands in Washington State and in British Columbia. Continuing to hone my skills as a performing musician helps keep me at the top of my game as a music teacher. Through these performing ensembles, as well as attending music education and choir director conferences, I am able to stay on top of current practices.
I am . . .
I have been described by colleagues and friends as quirky (you'll understand when you see my hair), passionate about music and people, funny (though my puns can be groaners), fun, kind, and most importantly, dedicated to my craft.