Performing with Pizzazz: Show Choir Presents “That ‘70s Show”


Kayla Vu

Sound Intervention performs “In the Summertime” by Mungo Jerry during after school rehearsals on April 25.

In the pitch-black auditorium, a group of individuals stand scattered across the stage when suddenly a voice cuts through the silence, singing with an effortlessly vibrant sound. After the note finished, lights suddenly flashed awake, engulfing the stage with colorful hues. With a beat running, the chorus of singers burst into song and dance. Dynamic movements of twirls and dips captivate the audience as the sounds of music charm their ears. Under each spotlight, a student shines, performing with pride.

“There’s definitely a feeling of not caring about nothing else in the world,” senior Jonathan Diaz said. “It really is just that moment of having so many eyes on you that nothing else just matters and that has just been something so special to me.”

This Thursday, Friday and Saturday starting at 7:30 p.m., Sound Invention and the TrebleMakers will perform their final show of the school year, “That ‘70s Show.” In vibrant outfits reminiscent of the decade, the choir plans to wow the audience with a pop-show spectacular and live band. 

“The most exciting part of this, as a teacher, is being able to see the students take part in something as large of a scale as this,” assistant choir director Jeremy Rohwer said. “I know there aren’t a lot of choral programs that get to do something as big, crazy and extravagant as this. It’s just the ultimate entertainment [with] singing, dancing, live music and a super loud roaring crowd.”

Right after their previous Jazz-themed show in December, “Ear Candy,” the singers immediately started preparing for their spring show. Earlier in the year, students planned for what songs they wanted to perform. Using iconic hits of the ‘70s, the TrebleMakers plan to cover the music of legendary musicians like Pat Benatar’s “Heartbreaker.” Other popular songs will be featured by Sound Invention like Bee Gees’ “More than a Woman.”

“I had a lot of fun choosing the songs,” Diaz said. “[With] the theme being ‘70s, I was extremely ecstatic about it. I’ve always been a big fan of music from the ‘70s, so when [our director] announced that the theme of the show would be that, I really did rummage through all of my old playlists.”

Every year, the directors need to also plan for the production. Director Daniel Knight and Rohwer reach out to the live band that will perform with the choir, call in workers to organize and set up the light and sound system, prepare the music for the students, and bring in choreographers. Volunteer parents also came in to look through the group’s costume closet and figure out what outfits would fit best for each song.

“It was my first time working for this show,” Rohwer said. “It was a little intimidating at first, but at the same time, it’s really cool to be a part of something on such a large scale. The kids are really enjoying it as well and I know they’re going to be glad to be a part of this too.”

When setlists were chosen, both Sound Invention and the TrebleMakers began their months-long work. Since January, both groups practiced in class and choreographing began in February. It wasn’t until mid-March when after school rehearsals started. Every day, in addition to practicing in class, groups spent two hours after school working on their choreography and music. On following Saturdays and some occasional school holidays, rehearsals were also done from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. with lunch breaks in between. Days before their show premiere, rehearsals were four hours or more from Monday to Wednesday to touch up their presentation.

“I really want everyone to know how much effort goes into making shows like this,” senior Laney Jasper said. “Us students and directors put so much effort [in] learning the music, the choreography, and taking time outside of school. There’s just so much that goes into them. There’s only a few schools that have extremely amazing Show Choir programs like ours, and I feel like we’re so special that way.”

For members like Diaz, who performed in the previous year’s spring show, this final upcoming show brings initially mixed emotions.

“It’s exciting, melancholic and bittersweet,” Diaz said. “I personally owe a lot to my experience in show choir. It’s got me through a lot of things. I know if I was a part of Show Choir throughout my high school career, I would be in a much worse place. I’m extremely happy to be a part of this and I know a lot of people that I’ll keep in touch with or try to at least.”

Jasper, a fellow returning senior, shares similar sentiments. For her, the last performance of her high school career leaves bittersweet feelings.

“[Our last show] is definitely going to be really emotional when I perform for that last time,” Jasper said. “All year, we’ve created a tight family that I always talk to, go to, relate to and rely on. I’m just really grateful I had the opportunity all these years to be in the school’s Show Choir with all these incredible and talented people and just getting to do what I love.”

TrebleMakers sing along together to “When Will I be Loved” by  Linda Ronstadt during after school practice on April 25.