The VIPP Report: Introducing you to the West Louisville Performing Arts Academy

By Sherlene Shanklin

In today’s Your Story. Their name has changed but their music remains the same bringing all genres of music to West Louisville. I talk to the founder about their success. You recognize them as the West Louisville Boys Choir. 

In 1990, McDaniel Bluitt started The West Louisville Performing Arts Academy originally named the Moore Temple Boys Choir.  In 2002, the choir expanded by adding girls to the program. 

McDaniel says “We started the program because kids needed a way they can be engaged positively and doing the kinds of things that can make them productive members of the community.” 

Two current students, Sylvia Lontz and Alexandria Bluitt were introduced to the program differently but both believe it’s an amazing opportunity and everyone feels like family. 

Sylvia Lontz is heading to Eastern Kentucky University (EKU) this fall.  She says “I personally found out about this choir from my former choir director at Central High School.  He introduced it to me.  I though it would be an amazing opportunity for me and my younger sister.” 

Alexandria Bluitt is currently in high school but understands the importance of legacy.  She says “I’ve been in this choir ever since I was 4 or 5 years old.  Considering my grandparents started the choir.  This choir gave me a sense of family, not because they started it but because of the connections I made with people in this choir.”

The program is a melting pot of talents discovered within each child.  A. Bluitt goes on to say “It gives me a sense of structure.  For me personally anyway and I believe everyone needs a foundation to build on top of.”

M. Bluitt says “It’s a part of our slogan its more than just music…its more than just singing because children bring with us whatever they have with them at the time.  Some have training prior to coming to me while others haven’t.” 

They’ve had a chance to travel and perform all over the world from Bahamas to Las Vegas, and all over the state of Kentucky.  With that exposure caused some of his former students to think out of the box.   Key’mon Murrah & Kay’mon Murrah both participated in the program.  As adults they are both classically trained. 

Key’mon is moving to New York.  He says “I’m going to Juilliard in the fall for a graduate diploma. And then I have me Opera debut this winter.”

Kay’mon remains in the area to help others interested in the arts.  He says “I’m working with Kentucky Opera at various events but right now im working as a board member for the public arts commission in Lexington, KY. So that’s been really fulfilling. “

Mr. Bluitt says “Music evolves its never to stay the same.” And so does its leadership. His son Joshua will take the helm and carry on the tradition.  Bluitt says he will still be around consulting and help counsel but feels it’s the right time to pass the baton so his son can take the program even further. 

McDaniel says “One of the things its accomplishing its helping to dispel the myth in the minds of so many people.  Not just Black people, White people m Jewish people not just men but men and women.  They get a chance to see the program that’s holistic.  They get a chance to see the program as positive and believe it or not got their children in it. That’s ongoing and I’m proud of that.” 

Kay’mon says “You have to be open for new things and be willing to absorb it all. I really believe once you start that process you will be able to fly anywhere.”

The West Louisville Performing Arts Academy has a 100% graduation rate and they now enjoy new home for their program.  You can now find their studio in the Kentucky Center for African American Heritage at 17th and West Ali.  To support go to www.wlpaa.org

►Contact Your Story’s Sherlene Shanklin at sshanklin@whas11.com or follow her on FacebookTwitter, or Instagram. 

To see the story, click the link below.

https://www.whas11.com/article/news/local/west-louisville-boys-choir-community-impact/417-4eb6cf86-d4de-447d-8908-f17c26b0b202

The VIPP Report: WLPAA Summer Music Camp

WLPAAThe WLPAA’s Summer Music Camp will convene:

Place: Artspace, 4th floor, 323 West Broadway

Date: Tuesday (June 11, 2019)

Wednesday (June 12, 2019)

Time: 9:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m.

Throughout the Summer Music Institute, June 11-15, 2019, the WLPAA’s Summer Music Camp, the students will be engaged in group rehearsals, sectionals, vocal techniques, etiquette training, choir decorum, and preparing new music for our September College Tour to Campbellsville and our Annual Hope Awards Christmas Dinner Concert. WLPAA will also have guest speakers.  On Tuesday Mr. Manfred Reid, the WLPAA Board Chairman, will be the guest speaker. He will share his amazing journey to South Africa. 

On Thursday June 13, 2019 the Day Camp will turn into a residence Camp at the downtown Hyatt Regency Hotel.  Here the children will receive etiquette training, a prelude to their Closing Ceremony, a formal dinner at the hotel’s Spire restaurant.  The students will check out on Saturday, June 15, 2019.

If you would like for your child to be a part of the West Louisville Performing Arts Academy’s Summer Music Institute please contact:

McDaniel Bluitt

E-mail: wlbc_wlgc@yahoo.com

 

The VIPP Report: Annual Hope Awards Showcase Members of the West Louisville Boys and Girls Choirs

 

West-Louisville-Performing-Arts-Academy

(Louisville, KY) The West Louisville Performing Arts Academy (WLPAA) d.b.a. West Louisville Boys and West Louisville Girls Choirs, (WLBC/WLGC) announces their 18th Annual Hope Awards Dinner Concert on Saturday, December 9th at the University Club on the University of Louisville’s Belknap Campus.  The dinner concert will begin at 6:00 p.m.

This year’s McDaniel Bluitt Hope Award recipient is Kentucky Senator for 33rd District Gerald A. Neal.  “He works tirelessly in the community.  Many see him on television but the things you don’t see that got the attention of my organization.  Sen. Neal has made several visits to talk to members of both choirs.  He was candid with them and helped them understand what it takes to be a leader in the community.  His knowledge was invaluable and he demonstrates all the characteristics to be this year’s honoree,” says McDaniel Bluitt, Boys Choir Director.

Senator Neal did highlight his honor but the accomplishments of the choirs by saying “I congratulate the students and leadership of the West Louisville Performing Arts Academy, members of the West Louisville Boys and Girls Choir for their dedication, educational obtainment, and for making a difference in the world. It is through the pursuit of excellence that they plan, prepare, and ultimately perform at a high level.”

We invite you to come out and support the youth but one of our greatest community leaders Sen. Neal.  Tickets for the 18th Annual Hope Awards are $100 for adults and $50 for students.  They can be purchased at 323 West Broadway, Artspace, 4th floor.  For more information, please contact McDaniel Bluitt at 502-376-7840

Members of the Boys & Girls Choirs rehearse twice a week, Mondays and Wednesdays, from 4:30-6:30 p.m. The WLPAA is more than just singing.  They offer college scholarships, After School Tutorials, private Acoustic Guitar lessons and performance opportunities locally and statewide.

If you would like to set up an interview with Bluitt, Founder/Director of the West Louisville Performing Arts Academy and/or Sen. Gerald Neal contact us at info@vippcommunications.com

For additional information go to http://www.westlouisvilleperformingarts.org.

History

West Louisville Boys Choir began in November 1990. The choir is directed by McDaniel Bluitt, a retired vocal music teacher with twenty-nine (29) years of experience. He received his B. M. ED. from the University of Louisville School Of Music and a Masters in Counseling from Western Kentucky University. The Boys Choir has performed throughout the commonwealth, for mayors, governors other national dignitaries. The Boys Choir’s first European Tour established international prominence in Paris, France and London, England. They received a superior rating during their first international music competition in the Bahamas. They were also awarded first place in the Music Festival at Sea.

The West Louisville Girls Choir made its debut in November 2002. The choir is directed by Mrs. Mamie Bluitt who received her B.M.ED. from the University of Louisville School of Music. The Girls Choir is also a performing choir.   Some of its more notable performances are: Governor Patton’s Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration in Frankfort, Kentucky, ECHO, Women for Women Conference and at Cincinnati’s National Underground Railroad Freedom Center. Their first Southwestern Tour to Texas was held in 2010.