1st Annual Choir Day Festival Sings for Unity Among District

Students from all NAHS schools come together to perform at the NAHS Choir Festival.

Mathya Clay, Copy Editor

Norristown Area School District had its very first annual Choir Day Festival last Wednesday in Norristown Area High School auditorium. The melodiously choirs of White Hall, Cole Manor, Gotwals, Hancock, Paul Fly, Marshall Street, Eisenhower, Stewart, East Norriton, and Norristown Area High School intertwined their talents and voices to create a mesmerizing performance. Each school established a unified presence by joining their voices together, showing that Norristown is stronger as one.

As high-spirited  the idea of the festival was, it wasn’t easy to make it a reality.

Norristown Area High School choir students and instructors began their day with a little chaos. At the beginning of the day, the auditorium wasn’t prepared to host all of the students, and it was the high school students’ job to make it that way. NAHS choir instructor Lynn Danoff and head of the festival directed her students from the stage. Balloons had to be blown, sign and streamers needed to be placed. The auditorium had to be perfect.

After the chaos of preparation, the NAHS choir students took a break and gathered themselves for an eventful day, for the singing chicklings had a lot to learn. For example, the kids were to learn how to harmonize, enunciate sounds, and present themselves for an audience.  

Jamie Hunt, junior, however, wanted to get a message across to the young singers about getting rid of stereotypes. “High school isn’t typically what people say,” she said. “There’s good things that come to Norristown, and [the young students] should get involved.” Well, her message got across to the future high-schoolers because they definitely got involved that day.

The students began arriving around nine twenty am. The chaos came in full force with kids from elementary to middle school in one room and all with different needs like putting their jackets away, where to put their lunches. Once every school was seated in their designated sections the officials began by… taking them to the bathroom, which was very important since the rest of the day will involve great participation and patience from them. Even some of the adults seemed anxious about what the day would involve. After all, the youngins weren’t very calm. Although once their chatter was to a minimum and they were comfortable in their seats the festival activities began.

The first activity of the festival involved each choir performing a song of their choice.

Stewart Middle School select choir put on a spectacular rendition of “Breathin” by Ariana Grande. Their soft melodies were beautiful and portrayed a deep message about punching through hard times. The cherry on top to their performance was a powerful solo done by Jordan Guerrier that had everyone cheering and clapping.

Very different from Stewart Middle School, Gotwals Elementary performed a song called “An Adventure.” This upbeat and thrilling performance had everyone clapping and nodding their heads along with them. As exciting as Gotwals students were, they also were very inspiring as they sung about hope and coming together which fit the overall meaning of the festival perfectly.

Paul Fly elementary also put on a jazzy piece called “It Don’t Mean a Thing If It Don’t Got That Swing.” Their choreographed moves had the entire crowd snapping and swaying along. It felt as if we were at a cookout and everyone would start doing the two step.

The last event of the festival was the greatest and most unifying part of it all. The choirs put their voices together and sung a gorgeous version of “A Million Dreams” from the film “The Greatest Showman.” All the students were directed to the stage in groups and stood tall and proud. It was a little tight on stage but everyone made it by Danoff’s great instructions. NAHS student Daisy Frias sat at the piano and two Eisenhower middle school students awaited the call to begin American Sign Language interpretation. Once Danoff gave the signal, greatness happened. The performance was so great that some students couldn’t hold in their excitement. I even let a few tears slip because of their gorgeous voices.

All voices resonated wonder, especially those of the solo performances. The high school students did a great job bringing it all together and keeping the munchkins happy and curious with their fun and games. Truly, the festival was an amazing thing that brought Norristown area together. Hopefully Norristown continues to host the Choir Day Festival or either becomes inspired to do even more gatherings like it. Stewart choir instructor, Yesenia O’brien, said she loved all of it, and they “made history.” This may be so. It’s the first district music festival Norristown has  done, and everyone involved collaborated and made it a powerful first.