The last event in LAB 5's busy two weeks of performing and helping out at our Youth Choral Festivals. in-school mini-concerts and exchanges in Oakland, and a Chanticleer style tour was at First Church Scientist in San Francisco yesterday afternoon.

An hour of music from all over the world going back to the Renaissance in half a dozen languages included a song in  Tagalog sung by sisters Ana and Yna.  Their mother-who taught it to them- came from Santa Rosa for the concert, along with family and friends of many LAB members from all over the Bay Area.

The big news was that LAB 5 sang this concert completely unconducted for the first time, and they were very impressive!   One of the goals of LAB is to have the ensemble develop enough self-reliance to be able to do that, and they did.  Ben got to introduce the numbers and then sit down!  The program finished up with their staged rendition of the comedy number  "Italian Salad." Just before that, though they sang an arrangement of U2's "Sleep tonight" which they had secretly prepared as a thank you to Ben Johns, their devoted director ( and our Education Director.)

A triumphant ending for a very hard-working and successful LAB 5.  LAB 6 starts January 14 and there are still openings for any interest Bay Area singers aged 14-20.  If that's you, you can apply for an audition to  If you're interested in an appearance by LAB Choir, write to the same address.

Congratulations to Ben and the singers and the parents and choir directors and everybody who makes the Louis A. Botto (LAB) Choir program a success, including our generous supporters!