Young ‘Uns’ Frances Jones’ tenure as big as her heart

Submitted by Special Contributor Lisa Geyer

Frances Jones’ volunteer work at C. C. Young started out like many others. She was coerced to provide supplemental help with something she knew little about: in this case, a residents-only choir group called the Young ‘Uns.

Six weeks later, everything changed. Frances was asked to take over as choir director. Despite feeling unprepared, unqualified and anxious, she accepted. Her devotion and love for the work and the people she directs is as impressive as the number of years she’s held the job – 20 years in all!

Frances says she feels blessed for the popularity of the group, from the viewpoint of its singers as well as the enthusiastic attendees at concerts. Some singers sang earlier in life, and some not at all. Others play musical instruments as well as sing, but in some way, everyone contributes.

Having fun is the guiding principle of the Young ‘Uns. And Frances keeps fun in mind while selecting music, and during practices, performances and concerts’ audience-participation portions. She’s learned what works, which is why every performance includes the audience in singalongs.

At a recent St. Patrick’s Day concert, a full house enthusiastically joined in with the choir during “My Bonnie,” “Danny Boy” and other favorites.

Expect the same enthusiasm at a future Lerner-and-Lowe-showcased performance, where songs from “My Fair Lady,” “Camelot” and other pieces will be on the bill.
The group’s other planned concerts feature holiday favorites at Christmas and love songs on Valentine’s Day.

Frances is grateful for lots of things in her life: her husband, two children and six grandchildren, and “all the wonderful people I’ve gotten to know at C. C. Young.”

And she’s grateful that so many people like to sing, just like she does.

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