The gift of Music

You can’t go very far in this town without finding someone to sing the praises of long-time Eagle Grove resident Roi Anne Gearhart.  She has brought so much joy through her music to this community.  But now it is time for a new NOTEable change in her life.  She has decided to move to Nebraska to be closer to her sister.

Gearhart’s love of music began when she was a young child.  She learned to play both the piano and the bassoon.  By the seventh grade, however, she knew her true passion was vocal music.  After graduating from high school, Gearhart left Missouri Valley to pursue an education in music in Nebraska.  From there, she earned her master’s degree at Eastern New Mexico University.  She then went on to teach at a middle school back in Missouri for two years before deciding it was a bigger school district than she wanted to be in.  That’s when she brought the gift of music to Eagle Grove.

It all began with a phone call in 1973 from the then Eagle Grove Superintendent, Arnold Bradley.  He offered her a position as the high school (seventh through 12th grade) music teacher.  Gearhart jumped at the opportunity as it was just what she was hoping for - to be further back in the midwest, a smaller school district, and as a bonus, they had a brand new choir room that had just been built on to the school.  She remembers very specifically that her first group consisted of 94 girls...and only four boys.  But after a little recruiting on her part, they soon had enough guys that they could even organize a co-ed show choir.

Gearhart spent 11 years at Eagle Grove High School before taking advantage of another opportunity.  She accepted a position with Iowa Central Community College as their vocal director.  She taught there for six years before accepting an offer in 1990 to return to the Eagle Grove School District teaching at the Eagle Grove elementary schools, and that’s where she stayed for more than 20 years.

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