by Julia Veik
In its third year, the Marian Momentum Show Choir is off to a dazzling start. Momentum’s theme for the season is Gold, and their repertoire includes the songs “Fire” by Gavin DeGraw, “Orange Colored Sky” by Nat King Cole, “Caught in the Storm” by Katharine McPhee from SMASH, “I Feel the Earth Move” by Carole King and James Taylor and “Gold Forever” by The Wanted.
The soloists are Jolie Peal ’19 in “Orange Colored Sky,” seniors Kaci Kirchhoefer ’18, Maria Determan ’18 and Megan Doehner ’18 in “Caught in the Storm,” and senior Mia Soulliere ’18 in “I Feel the Earth Move.”
“It is honestly really scary, but also really exciting. The crowd really gets me into it, and I’m really pumped to do well for Marian,” Kirchhoefer said.
Momentum had their showcase for parents and friends of show choir members on Jan 8. The showcase was an opportunity for the girls to experience a performance before their first competition on Jan. 13 at Papillion-La Vista South High School, which was a B.O.S.S. point event. They received fourth place. After their showcase performance, they had the chance to be critiqued by Cheri Helmer-Riensche, the former show choir director at Papillion-La Vista South.
The showcase was set up similarly to how the competitions work. For competitions, Momentum arrives two hours before their warm-up time, which they spend working on their hair, makeup and costumes. About ten minutes before their scheduled performance they head to warm-ups, led by a student from the school that hosts the competition. In warm-ups the show choir can go through their songs and dances before going backstage.
Then the group is announced by the presenters and walk out onto the stage to stand in front of the audience. The performance, which typically lasts from 10 to 15 minutes, is both exciting and nerve- wracking for the girls.
“At first you kind of feel nervous and you see all these people in the crowd. You’re not really used to being in front of all these people so you are kind of freaking out on stage. Eventually you kind of just get used to the rhythm of it and you really feel it, you connect with the audience and you become one with the audience. It’s really an amazing experience,” sophomore Isha Kashore said.
After their performance, the show choir is led to a second room to receive comments and critiques from one of the three judges that watched their performance. The judge will give pointers on how they can improve their show.
In show choir competitions, three different divisions compete, and Momentum participates in the unisex division. The show choirs each have their own themes that their songs and costumes are based on. The songs chosen are often times high energy and relatable.
Relatability is especially important for the ballad. In a ballad, a heartfelt, slower song, it is important to have strong vocals and facial expressions, because there is no dancing to draw the eyes of the audience. Other important components of show choir are the band, made up of regular choir accompanist Mr. Tim DiBlasi, senior Morgan Hodges on the keyboard and Creighton Prep junior P.J. Mooney on the keyboard, and costumes, which are meant to add to the energy of the performance.
The next competition that Marian Momentum competed in was at Westside High School on Jan. 27. They received fourth place out of seven teams.
Marian Momentum show choir will be performing for the entire school in the gym on April 13.
Momentum’s director, Ms. Lauren Morrissey, is proud of where Momentum currently stands in their season and is excited to see how they can improve further.
“Their dedication and seeing how much they have improved from August to now has made this a very rewarding year already,” Morrissey said, “No matter how the scores fall, their hard work throughout the year and the positive impression they leave on the audience after each performance is what makes me so proud to be their director.”