by Samantha Della Fera
Tomorrow night, Cafeteria B will be transformed from a dreary high school cafeteria to a relaxed concert hall adorned with candles and roses. The WHS choir’s third annual Night of Love Songs is taking place from 7 to 9 and will feature both group and solo performances from members of the Bella Cora, Concert Choir and Chorale Choraleers.
Audience members can expect to hear covers of various pieces by artists ranging from Sara Bareilles to Damien Rice to Elvis Presley, all chosen and performed by the students. Unlike most of the choir department’s events, Night of Love Songs is focused on the voices of one or two singers rather than the unified sound of the group.
“It’s in a more intimate setting than our other concerts,” said choir and chorus teacher Mr. John Brzozowski. “Food is being served, prizes are being won and we get to not only feature the choir but also the individual students. They bring with each song a certain sense of their own uniqueness.”
And with a performance date just three days before Valentine’s Day, each performer is certain to bring a sense of romance to the stage as well.
“It’s a night to celebrate love and to be in a room with positive vibes and people just having fun doing what they love,” said junior Abby Connolly.
For many performers, the event also provides a chance to sing solo for the first time.
Junior Emma Shakal said: “You get the chance to express yourself through a piece that means something to you. When you’re in a choir you don’t get to choose your song, but you still have to find a way to connect to it emotionally. When you get to choose the song, the emotional connection is already taken care of.”
With a mix of first-time and veteran performers, the love of the night extends beyond the music and into the encouragement from everyone in the choir.
“I hope [first-time performers] start becoming more comfortable singing alone and that they realize that the entire department is behind them supporting them,” said senior and Choir Vice President Alex Cestero. “It’s an opportunity to showcase not only your own individual voice, but also to hear and cheer on your friends and classmates as they showcase theirs as well.”
The event will raise money for the music department’s triannual trip to Europe in 2018. While serving primarily as a fundraiser, Night of Love Songs has also become an anticipated night for WHS singers and guests.
Said Brzozowski: “I hope that the audience is inspired by the love songs that they hear. Whether it’s good, bad, or unrequited love, whatever the case may be, I hope that they enjoy every moment of it.”