Choirs prepare for final concert, continue traditions

Kaitlin Clark, Entertainment Editor

It’s always tough for seniors to say goodbye, but for those in choir, they have one last chance. The choirs are preparing for their final concert, which is set to take place on May 17.

“I’m going to miss the choir program a lot mostly because I know I probably won’t be involved too much with choir at the college level, but just the sense of community that comes with being in choir and just making music together,” senior Gloria Gantt said. “It’s a good way to bond with each other.”

Chamber choir traditionally sings the song “The Lord Bless You and Keep You” as a tribute-of-sorts to the seniors who will be leaving the choir program. It is often an emotional experience for seniors and underclassmen alike, as they have spent several years singing with one another.

“It’s going to be really sad and a lot of people will be crying, not just the seniors,” sophomore Gabriel Martinez said.

Besides the usual performances and the senior sendoff, the concert will also feature a video of all graduating choir students talking about their future plans and favorite choir memories.

“[The senior video] is really important and it means a lot that we are a part of the video, just continuing on something that’s been a part of the choir program for such a long time,” Gantt said.

Seniors who have been a part of the choirs always have something positive to say about their time performing.

“It’s a good class to make good friends in and have a non-stressful but intense and challenging class,” senior Erin Hackenberg said.

As the year ends and seniors prepare to once again be freshmen, current juniors are looking toward the next year with nervous anticipation.

“The final performance is always a good time to provide closure for the program for that year,” choir director Chad Pape said via email. “It also lets you see where you’re headed for the fall.”

As soon-to-be seniors, underclassmen will be expected to help newer members. Each year, the overall dynamic of the choir changes depending on their leadership.

“You listen to the seniors because they have more mature voices, so then as you become a senior you have to become the mature voice and also become the leader in the choir, so it’ll be weird,” junior Parker Wilson said. “It’s something that we’ll kind of have to struggle through together.”

Thursday’s concert promises to be bittersweet as underclassmen watch their friends move on to college, but as one chapter ends, another begins.

“Everyone’s time comes and they obviously want to get out of here and go pursue what they want to do with their lives,” Wilson said, “which is great but then, you know, it’s also hard as a junior having to accept the fact that your role models or your best buddies are moving on and you won’t see them probably for a while.”