Pink and yellow feathers floated through the halls of Notre Dame Preparatory as dark creatures from Halloweentown slunk toward the open doors of the NDP cafeteria. However, it was not Mr. and Mrs. King’s cooking that beckoned friends and family on a dark Wednesday night. Instead, it was the sound of tinkling music drifting out of the NDP Stage and Screen Choir Concert, which drew a crowd on November 8.
This was the first concert of the year for the choir program, approximately 35 students divided among the Chorus, Concert Choir, Show Choir, and Honors Concert Choir. Each group of students performed pieces, specifically chosen by the newest member of the performing arts department, Ms. Deanna Hudson. It was Hudson’s first concert in her role as director of the NDP choral groups.
“I felt that it went really great,” Hudson said. “The students worked really hard to learn all the materials and we weren’t stressed at all going into it. They did everything right and had a lot of fun doing it too.”
Hudson was not the only one experiencing her first concert on campus. Bouncing with energy, NDP freshman Frankie Keffer recalled the moment she knew she wanted to join the choir program.
She said, “last year at eighth grade day, I saw all the choirs and I thought, ‘Whoa, that’s really cool! I want to try that,’ so I did.”
According to Keffer, the concert provided the students with the opportunity to relate with the audience through song.
She said, “I feel like I could connect with people very, very well. It was all fun and very enjoyable.”
The first group of performers was the Show Choir, singing “City of Stars” from the Oscar-nominated movie musical La La Land. Chorus and Concert Choir followed close behind, performing “Scales and Arpeggios” from the Disney Classic The Aristocats. Next, the Honors Concert Choir mashed together four songs from the haunting Disney film The Nightmare Before Christmas. Finally, all four of the groups danced around the stage during their performance of “Take on the World” from the Disney Channel TV show “Girl Meets World”. Between the group performances, seven soloists sang a variety of songs. One of these soloists was NDP sophomore Rebecca Emerson.
This event kicked off Emerson’s second year as a member of the Honors Concert Choir and her first time singing a concert solo.
“It just had so much energy and it made me feel so alive and I love just hanging out up there and just jamming out,” she said. “It was a great time!”
A veteran in the class, Emerson is one of six remaining members of the Honors Choir, as the majority of the first and second sopranos graduated in May. However, even the most seasoned performer is not made of stone.
“I was kind of nervous,” recounted Emerson, “but I kind of perform all the time, so it’s not as bad anymore … Things like nerves or sickness get in the way, but that can’t stop you from performing.”
With the Christmas repertoire looming on December 5 during the Fine Arts Festival, this is only the beginning for the performing arts program.
Hudson said, “The NDP choral groups are continuing on to bigger and better things.”