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Your Chicago: Chicago Community Chorus

Members of the Chicago Community Chorus rehearse. (CBS)

Members of the Chicago Community Chorus rehearse. (CBS)

Rob Johnson Rob Johnson
Rob Johnson is the weekday anchor of the CBS 2 Chicago evening...
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(CBS) – It might be the most talented choir you’ve never heard of, and the Chicago Community Chorus is celebrating its 10th year in 2013.

It is made up of professional singers and amateurs alike, CBS 2’s Rob Johnson reports.

At Park Manor Church on the South Side, they come to sing, 150-strong.

Some are professional singers who read music, other are amateurs who cannot;  one is just 16, while another is the ripe age of 93. But all are welcomed, as they sing under the watchful eye of artistic director and founder Keith “Doc” Hampton, who has a vast musical background.

“We don’t care what your level is,” he says. “I often will say if you have two notes I want those two notes.”

The Chicago Community Chorus prides itself on being able to perform any type of music. Their current project, for example, is Verde’s “Requiem,” in Latin.

“I train them vocally, and then I give them the pronunciation in Latin and they repeat it back,” Hampton says.

For widow Dianna Durham McLoud, the death of her husband last year left her in a haze. But a friend suggested they join the choir, which she says has helped her recover.

“It makes me very proud, and it makes me proud to know that we’re working with people who otherwise would not have access to this kind of music,” she says.

If you think they are coddled by doc, think again, he’ll call out anyone for a missed note.

“There are times in performance where I’ve heard some people do some things that were not on the score,” Hampton says.

The CCC will be performing “Requeim” in May at a site still to be determined.

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