ICC Magazine - Page 11

T urae Dabney, an ICC singer from 1987 to 1991, speaks highly of the relationships and friendships she formed through the ICC that she has kept up for 25 years now. Today, Dabney works as a political consultant on campaigns in Washington D.C. and across the country. “I’m not a musician now; I don’t think I’ve sung since I hung up my blazer,” she said, “but I often think about how the choir has developed me. It developed not only my discipline of learning music and coming to practice, but the persistence and Although they lived in different states, Mark and Katie discovered that they had a lot in common. A spark was kindled, and in 2010 they married, bringing their families together in Indianapolis. Today, the Landis family has enrolled two of their sons in ICC programs, to give them that once-ina-lifetime experience they knew and loved, which brought them together. “As a mom of an ADD child and knowing what I was like as a kid, ICC helped me a lot with my focus,” said Katie. “Character development was huge in ICC because it guided you through those pivotal years where you’re really defining who you are as a person. You don’t realize how much character development you get from perseverance needed to succeed in anything I do. I was a very unique individual when I was in grade school, and what I loved about choir is that we were made up of a whole bunch of unique individuals. My uniqueness was celebrated, and you don’t always see that.” the people around you until years later—the friends you make in ICC are lifetime friends, and their friendships were very influential for me.” Mark recalls his mother being astonished at how his maturity had grown tangibly over the course of a week-long tour to New England. She felt that he came home much more grown up than he had left. “I think the Indianapolis Children’s Choir’s expectations of excellence and attitude in creating that artistry sets students up to be better than what they would be otherwise,” he said. “High expectations were a huge help in my development of character internally, and taught me how to treat others with respect.” Why did they want their children involved in the ICC? “We wanted that experience for them because we know the quality and wanted them to get the discipline,” explained Mark. “They’ve seen me expect really high levels of excellence, and they’ve heard quality and done it in church choirs and other settings, but it’s a big thing for me to give them the opportunity of a large choral experience with Ruth Dwyer, Henry Leck, and now Josh Pedde at the helm.” “I think about how the choir has developed me professionally. It’s not only developed my discipline, but also the persistence and perseverance to succeed in anything you do.” An Experience to Pass on to the Next Generation Choir alumni Mark and Katie Landis first met in the ICC in the 1990s and became part of a close-knit group of friends who, many years later, reconnected on Facebook through their shared stories and experiences. ICC alum Turae Dabney shares ICC’s impact on character development 11