Jericha Mill, ICC/IYC Alumna, 2005-2013; Bel Canto and Cantates Angeli Choir Assistant, 2014-2017
My experience in ICC was completely incredible in so many ways, but the ways it changed my life were not clear until after my high school graduation. My final year in ICC, I was incredibly close to the IYC director, Cheryl West. I, as president of IYC, had a lot of responsibilities during our (very stressful) American Choral Directors Association year that brought Cheryl and me even closer together. A little over a year after I graduated, she passed away unexpectedly. That time of my life was tumultuous and so difficult, but it was then when my life and ICC began to converge again.
I was asked to speak at her funeral, and afterward, Josh Pedde asked me to work with him at rehearsals each week. Finding solace in the program that had given me such amazing experiences, I readily agreed, and I’ve since spent the past few years being his assistant.
I truly see myself in each of these singers. I have given relationship advice to a crying teenager and thought back to my own broken-hearted teenage years. I have consoled a stressed singer and remembered the times I was in her shoes, wishing there were a few more hours in a day to practice or prolong the time before I have to get in front of an audience and perform. The singers call me “Miss Jericha” and are always happy to see me. My ICC family from my own years will always be important to me, but this new ICC family keeps me going every day. The ICC has impacted my life tremendously and has provided a support system for me after all these years. I have honestly become the best version of myself through the kindness and support I receive from the ICC singers, parents, and staff.