Musicians prepare for Pops Concert

Determination, focus, the Eye of the Tiger. These are the attributes that Upper School musicians need in preparation for the annual POPS concert. On Dec. 1, over 200 US students will gather at O’Shaughnessy Auditorium at St. Catherine University for a night of music, ranging from Michael Bublé to the Wild West. Planning for the POPS concert began years in advance, as the school needed to reserve the O’Shaughnessy Auditorium early. The orchestra, choirs and bands all begin working on POPS material at the beginning of the school year.
“We have to start many months in advance trying to think what the finale could be,” US Orchestra teacher Almut Engelhardt said. “The last few weeks are really, really intense.”
Unlike many years in the past, this year’s POPS concert does not have a theme. “It is just POPS 2012,” Engelhardt said.
Though there is not one theme connecting all of the different performances, a lot of excitement and anticipation surrounds the finale, when all the students come together for a thrilling rendition of Eye of the Tiger.
“I’m looking forward to the ending piece,” freshman violinist Vanessa Miller said.
The Orchestra and Senior Strings ensembles are very excited for the songs they will be performing because they chose them. Engelhardt said that, surprisingly, many of the pieces the students choose are challenging.“They are very unpredictable in this way: they choose very often the hardest pieces” Engelhardt said.
Some exciting pieces to look forward too are The Godfather Theme, The Lord of the Rings and Super Mario Kart Theme performed by Senior Strings.
Four choirs will also provide sweet melodies to the concert.
“I’m excited for the POPS concert because we are singing good songs,” freshman Emilee Skadron, a member of Academy Chorale said.
Students from the Academy Chorale, Summit Singers, Summit Chamber Singers and Academy Chamber Chorale will sing songs ranging from Jolene by Dolly Parton to Fix You by Coldplay. Choir Director Anne Klus also noted that the Senior Women and Senior Men will be performing their own pieces.
The choir will be joined by the Gold Band in a rendition of Michael Bublé’s Haven’t Met You Yet
Other songs performed by the bands include the James Bond Theme and You Belong with Me by Taylor Swift. Sophomore Andy Gleeman said that the Blue Band looks forward to playing the Sesame Street theme song.
The POPS concert will be held at O’Shaughnessy Auditorium on Dec. 1 at 7:00 pm. Admission is free.