On our way home! Our “load the bus” time was a grotesque 3:15 am following our late-night concert the night before. We bussed to the Bilbao airport, then flew to Amsterdam, then to Salt Lake. The trip home was a combination of feelings: disbelief that we were already headed back, excitement to see our loved ones at home, relief at the prospect of total agency over what we get to eat once again, anxiety about catching up on 8 days of missed school without WIFI, and above all, a deep sense of gratitude for the choral bonding and miracle of connection we had witnessed in Tolosa.

These are the memories we will tell our kids about in 20 years. Despite challenges with jet lag and school work, or with memorization and fatigued voices, we know that we are changed for the better through this experience. New friends have been made and appreciation for the healing bond of music deepened. How many people get to say they went to Spain in the middle of the semester with their best friends to inspire and touch the lives of people they’ve never met? BYU Singers are truly living the dream, and we are thankful for a loving God who took care of us from start to finish.

Zarautz became the choir’s home after being there for a week, and we will remember its kind people and its beauty, as well as the audiences and other choirs at the Tolosa competition.



We want to extend a huge thank you to everyone who supported this crazy dream of ours. To Dr. Reich, Dean Ed Adams, and other administrators at the College of Fine Arts and Communications and the School of Music for approving this trip; to Stacey Christensen, our Singers mama and unwavering advocate in all things tour related and beyond; to Grace Parry, our president, and our vice presidents Nicole Dayton and Madison Paez for their many hours of preparation for this tour and their timely leadership when things were difficult; to fellow Singer Hannah Klassen for taking on the bulk of tour-related communication, passport and vaccination status administrative work, scheduling and other tasks that saved our bacon; to Dr. Wells for coming with us and supporting the common cold-weakened Dr. Crane in crucial moments; to Dr. Jared Pierce, BYU piano faculty who added his fine musical skills to our concerts; to our parents, spouses, significant others, roommates, professors, and friends who have supported us saving money, taking time away from class and other responsibilities, and through late nights catching up on the aftermath of mountainous homework; to Sandefur Schmidt for loving and supporting BYU Singers so consistently, and particularly for organizing and editing this blog; and to Dr. Crane, whose blood, sweat, and tears go into this choir and inspire us daily to be the very best we can be for our Lord.

Much love and ‘til next tour,

The BYU Singers