A recent Facebook discussion renewed my faith in humanity.
The poster asked, “Do you let your students go to Festival with neon colored hair?”
Overwhelmingly, the responding conductors said, “Of course!” Responses ranged from “Yes. Full stop.” to “Absolutely. I can’t imagine any choir being adjudicated by the color of their hair.”
My personal favorite: “One of the greatest gifts we can give our students is to allow them to be themselves.”
The only no response indicated it was only because it was against the school dress code. (What?!)
Now conductors are daring each other to dye their own hair for Festival!
My own high school experience didn’t include the height/weight requirements of some show choir programs, but I do recall one long-haired young man required to wear a wig in performances. I’m certain that neon hair would have also been wigged.
I am so happy to celebrate the diversity of my students, and am so glad that so many of our colleagues feel the same. I personally find that one person with brightly-colored hair can remind me that this choir is not a single entity, but made up of distinct human beings with their own feelings, stories, and baggage. It is always a welcome reminder.