WEST ORANGE, NJ — The West Orange High School spring choral concert was a spectacular representation of the commitment to the arts long supported by the school district as talented students performed a wide array of musical offerings, according to a press release from the school district.
John Hellyer and William Farley lead all the different musical choirs at the high school. Hellyer leads the all-female Treble Choir, Concert Choir and Glee Club, and Farley leads the Jubilee Choir and Chamber Choir. Several of the performances were choreographed by students, including freshman Indigo Jackson and seniors Cameron Bridgers and Kennedy Fort-Foskey.
Several highlights punctuated the evening’s performances. A medley of Whitney Houston songs by the Treble Choir offered enthusiastic vocals; Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” and the standard “Moon River” by the Concert Choir provided sentiment and pathos. The combined Treble and Concert choirs welcomed the Edison Middle School Chorus for a medley of songs from the Broadway hit “Matilda” featuring several solos by the sixth-grade students. The Chamber Chorus offered up a strong “Porgy and Bess” medley with a soaring solo of “Summertime” by sophomore Gabby Florendo, and graduating seniors soloed on Fantasia Barrino’s “I Believe.”
The Glee Club provided a contemporary edge to the evening, with choreographed performances that paid tribute to Glenn Frey, David Bowie, Prince, George Michael and Maurice White of Earth, Wind, and Fire. A strong version of “Who Lives, Who Dies, Who Tells Your Story,” from the smash musical “Hamilton,” followed. The Jubilee Choir then took the stage to deliver powerful performances of “What About Love,” from “The Color Purple,” with soloists Gabriella Rodriguez and Marah Clairvoyant, and “Tryin’ to Tell You Something,” with soloists Rodriguez and Kefi Mtume.
The combined choruses’ finale of “Battle Hymn of the Republic” brought the audience to their feet as the final choir concert of the 2017 school year came to a close.