Pops 2015: first Huss concert takes audience to the Star (War)s

Krista Schlinger, Staff Writer

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The 2015 Pops Concert was the guinea pig for some big changes this year including performing in the new Huss Center Auditorium and the new apparel system. This annual concert is performed by St. Paul Academy and Summit School students and run by faculty and directors in the SPA community. The concert kicked off its first performance on Friday Dec. 4 with songs like Mission Impossible, September, and We Got the Beat by Academy Symphony, Jazz Band, Summit Singers and Academy Chorale.

I felt the support of all of the other performers on stage with me as well,”

— freshman Emily Schlinger

Junior Coleman Thompson, the pianist in Academy Symphony and Honors Sinfonia, said his favorite piece to play was Duel of the Fates, the finale song of the concert performed by all of the musical groups.

“It’s really hard for me to put what this was like into words, because it was just this feeling of indescribable excitement. It’s such an incredible experience to be onstage and be a part of this wonderful thing that we have at SPA,” Thompson said.

Most students had positive things to say about the experience onstage. The convenience of being familiar with the space and the freedom while waiting between acts was something they seemed to appreciate this year.

“It was a lot of fun to perform on stage with my friends, and I would definitely do it again.” sophomore, Tucker Waltenbaugh who was on the trumpet in the Intermediate Jazz Ensemble said.

The Bohemian Rhapsody performed by the Academy Chorale and Summit Singers was a big hit this year.

“It was cool to be a part of such a big group. Although the audience was so big and it was kind of intimidating, I felt the support of all of the other performers on stage with me as well,” freshman Academy Chorale singer Emily Schlinger said. “I really liked the Bohemian Rhapsody song, and I loved listening to the soloists. They sounded really great.”

“Performing in the Huss Center was also a big change from last year when we performed at O’Shaughnessy. The stage and house of Huss are both smaller than O’Shaughnessy which was different, everyone fit onstage and it was really nice to be able to perform in our own theatre,” sophomore Summit Singers Maya Shrestha said.

Not only did the setting change this year, the apparel was another big adjustment that sparked a lot of controversy and mixed feelings.

“When we first heard that we were wearing long sleeve black polo shirts, most people were pretty disappointed. For me, it was because the Pops T-shirts that we had before were student designed and they had a theme that had to do with the finale song. When we got the polos, they actually weren’t that bad and I think it looked really nice onstage,” Shrestha said.

The next concert will be the Upper School Vocal and Orchestral Spring concert on Apr. 30.

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