For a brief time tomorrow morning, the Baltimore-based group Maryland Sings could be called CBS Sings.
The 21-member group, composed of 15- to 19-year-olds, recently taped a rendition of "Oh, What a Beautiful Morning" that's scheduled to air on "CBS This Morning" tomorrow (seen locally at 7 a.m. on WBAL-TV, Channel 11).
The song, which is the show's theme, can be heard daily 'D between commercial breaks, as rendered by a variety of singers from around the country.
"We called WBAL to see how to go about it, got in touch with CBS and someone just called back to arrange it," says Bill Myers, founder and director of the 2-year-old organization.
The national TV exposure comes ahead of two area concerts this weekend and a scheduled White House appearance later this month by Maryland Sings, which performs a variety of American music styles, from folk to gospel.
The group also is making plans for a tour of France and Germany next summer, including a headline performance at a Cole Porter festival in Chamonix.
Last summer, the group toured seven countries in Europe over a three-week period.
"They're primarily kids coming from Baltimore County schools, although we have one from Baltimore City and two who are in college," says Mr. Myers.
The group began in 1991 with a performance at a crab feast in Chestertown for Gov. William Donald Schaefer.
Mr. Myers, then chairman of the performing arts department at Dulaney Senior High School in Baltimore County, had been asked to provide entertainment.
He chose five students to perform, and the reception was so heartwarming he decided to form a permanent group.
He has since retired from the school system to devote his full time to Maryland Sings.
"I wanted to take gifted young people and provide a platform," says Mr. Myer.
He conducts annual auditions for the group, and says "We're very, very selective."
HEAR THEM LIVE . . .
Performances by Maryland Sings:
Saturday -- 7 p.m., Owings Mills Mall.
Sunday -- 7:30 p.m., Towson State University Concert Hall, with guest artists opera singers Joseph Eubanks and Mary Ann Evangelista, and the Soul Purpose barbershop quarter of Reisterstown United Methodist Church.
Dec. 30 -- 7:15 p.m., East Wing of the White House in Washington, also with the Soul Purpose singers.
For more information about Maryland Sings, call (410) 356-3523.
. . . OR ON THE PHONE
To hear excerpts from "Christmas With Maryland Sings," call Sundial, The Sun's telephone information service, at (410) 783-1800 (268-7736 in Anne Arundel County, 836-5028 in Harford County, 848-0338 in Carroll County), and punch in 6199 after you hear the greeting.