by Christopher M. Loder
SUNDAY STAR-LEDGER, February 7, 1999
NAME: Todd W.
ACHIEVEMENT: Todd is one of six students from New Jersey to be chosen to perform with the American Choral Directors Association's National Honor Boychoir at the association's biennial convention in Chicago at the end of the month. On Feb. 27 Todd will sing at the Medinah Temple in front of 4,000 choral directors from around the world. Also performing in the international event will be the Children's Choir of Moscow and the Inner Mongolia Youth Chorus.
PREPARATION: Todd was chosen after a series of auditions and will be rehearsing with students from around the nation under the direction of Harvey Smith, choral director of the Phoenix Boys Choir.
QUOTE: "I feel greatly honored and I am so excited to go to Chicago because I have never been there before," the youth said. "I also want to see the Sears Tower."
ON LOVE OF SINGING:"I just like all the different languages and the songs and the different varieties of themthe enjoyment of hearing the different notes and how they go together to make the different songs."
TEACHER'S REACTION: "It's the highest honor you could receive. It's the best students in the whole country," said Tom Pedas, Todd's music teacher. "He is amazing. At first, he didn't want to sing in the chorus, but I convinced him and he just skyrocketed. He's got a beautiful voice and incredible range. The music he's learning is incredibly difficult and he's learned it already."
ACTIVITIES: Member of the School Chorus and the Celebration Singers Children's Choir, plays bass clarinet for the school band, a member of the school soccer team, also an honor student.
HOBBIES: Collecting baseball cards. "I like the Yankees, especially Derek Jeter and Tino Martinez."
FAVORITE SUBJECTS: Math and science "I like doing algebra and math, and science is just cool because I like learning about all the different chemistries."
FAVORITE BOOKS: Mysteries and horror stories.
FAVORITE FLICKS: "Scream" and "I Know What You Did Last Summer"
FAVORITE FOOD: Lasagne
Tom Pedas, The Celebration Singers and Children's Chorus