The Piedmont Choirs is extending a warm welcome to 19 choirs from Lithuania, Democratic Republic of Georgia, People’s Republic of China, Germany, Austria, Australia, Indonesia, the Philippines, Denmark and across the United States as they plan to participate in the 2012 Golden Gate International Children’s and Youth Choral Festival. To allow us to house the 530 singers participating, a vast network of organizations and community members are needed to engage with the Festival as homestay families.
For many choirs, the ability to homestay with families in our Bay Area communities determines whether or not they will be financially able to attend. Homestay experiences enrich both the children and youth attending the Festival and their host families, allowing them to experience a bit of each other’s worldviews and cultures. When PEBCC children travel they are themselves hosted in homes of choirs where they visit. It is this aspect of travel that is most meaningful to our own youth, one that often begins lifelong friendships.
Homestay families provide Festival participants with a home-away-from-home. They transport their guests to-and-from Festival events. Participants have rehearsals Monday-Friday from 9 AM to 5 PM and concerts 3 nights during the week with the Festival Closing Concert at Zellerbach Hall on Sunday. Homestay families receive 2 complimentary tickets to all concerts that require them. Free time, to further the cultural exchange, is scheduled for host families to spend with their guests.
Typically, homestay families host one to two pairs of children from a visiting choir. Homestays are in pairs so that the children do not feel isolated without someone they know from home. Host families provide a place to sleep, meals, bag lunches for the day, and transportation. It does not matter if you home is large or small, only that you open yourselves to wonderful experience of meeting and getting to know the youth of the world. All choirs have set schedules that include daily rehearsals and activities, Opening Concert on Monday night, two evening concerts between Tuesday and Thursday, and Closing Concert featuring the Massed Festival Choirs of close to 750 young singers and competition winners.
We are confident it will be a wonderfully rewarding experience for your family to host visiting Festival singers. The Festival will provide you with all the information you will need to plan for your homestay hosting experience.
Sounds fun! How do I sign up?
Download the Homestay Sign-Up Form and send to the Piedmont Choirs by phone, fax, or email. Let us know if you have a preference to host boys or girls, any pets you have (so we can avoid allergy conflicts), and the number of children that you can host.