Pine Tree graduate pursues profession singing in Army
By Angela Ward email@example.com
July 17, 2013 at 10 p.m.
Katherine Dulweber is singing a new song these days. It's one with a military beat.
Dulweber, a 2006 graduate of Pine Tree High School and daughter of Vince and Karen Dulweber, recently became a member of the chorus for the Army Field Band. The band is based out of Fort Meade, Md. and performs in concerts around the world.
"The band and chorus operate differently than any other part of the armed forces," Dulweber said. "I auditioned for the chorus and was accepted, but then I had to go through basic training."
Going through basic training was tough and scary, Dulweber said, but knowing she had a position in the chorus helped her get through it.
"I think my parents were more accepting of my decision to join the Army because they knew I was already guaranteed a position as a singer," she said. "It's not like I'm going to be being shot at."
Joining the military hadn't been on Dulweber's radar while she was pursuing an undergraduate degree at Baylor University and a master's degree at Boston University. But she knew she wanted a career as a professional singer, preferably performing before live audiences rather than doing studio work.
"I never imagined I'd end up in the Army, but this really seems the perfect place for me to live out my dreams of singing professionally," Dulweber said.
The chorus performs a wide variety of music, she said. While her initial performances were around the Fourth of July and tended to be mostly patriotic tunes, the chorus regularly sings selections from opera and Broadway shows.
"I've had less than a month worth of performing with the chorus so far, but it's been wonderful," Dulweber said. "The talent level is incredibly high."
The chorus has about 26 singers, many of whom have been part of the group for decades. Dulweber is committed to four years with the chorus, but said she'll probably re-enlist after her initial tour is over.
"I love it already and I think I'm in for the long haul," she said. "Of course, I'll have to see where life takes me, but I can't imagine a better professional opportunity."
The competition to get into the group was intense, she said, as there are only six mezzo-sopranos in the chorus, including Dulweber.
"This isn't an opportunity that comes along often and I'm lucky to have a chance to be part of this," she said.