Grace Paparo and Lily Loewenguth
This year marks the 19th annual Jamesville-DeWitt Central School spring choral festival. This year the J-D music department has selected to sing songs from “Newsies,” a Broadway musical. As usuall the fest will feature the seventh and eighth grade chrouses, along with the high school groups of chorale, chamber choir, women's choir, and SPARK.
The concert will consist of 12 songs from the Broadway production. Preperation for the choral fest begins before school even starts. “Every year we elect chorus officers,,(and) over the summer I texted them and they gave me suggestions. “Newsies” was my favorite,” says choral director Beth Quackenbush. “It’s an amazing story about kids rising up,” said senior Catharine Cargian. A lot of hard work is put into memorizing the music, which starts in November,” said Mrs. Quackenbush.
The Broadway musical takes place in Long Island and New York City and is inspired by a real-life news strike that took place in 1899. Boys are out on the streets selling newspapers for money. Many of them don’t have parents and barley make enough money for food, so when the price of newspaper is raised by 10 cents, they go on strike. Because the story is about a group of boys, there are a lot of male solos in the choral festival. “We have a lot of talented guys not only in SPARK but in all the choirs,” said Cardigan. Senior Nick Kuci has been in the choral fest since middle school. This year he has multiple solos as Jack Kelly. “Seeing the Netflix version of the (Broadway) show definitely influenced the expression I put into my audition,” said Kuci. Another one of JD’s well known singers, sophomore Alex Yoo, has a solo this year. He also did some research before his audition. “I was going to try out for a solo to begin with, but seeing the show in class helped me better prepare on how I was going to audition,” said Yoo. The SPARK group will also be dancing during four of the songs and will even tap dance in one.
The concerts will be on April 6 at 5:30pm and again at 8pm in the J-DHS Osborn Auditorium. Tickets are available for $6 at jdmusic.ticketleap.com