Show Choir Sings, Dances to Fundraise for Upcoming Season


Delaney Appelhans, Features Editor

To kick off the Show Choir competition season, the three choirs showcased this year’s routines at their fundraising event entitled “Spotlight Concert and Dessert Extravaganza” on Saturday, Nov. 7.

“Spotlight is our largest fundraiser for Show Choir throughout the year,” said Stevee Bellas, director of Lights, the all-girl Show Choir, and first-year teacher at MHS. “It’s our goal to raise $12,000. That money is a huge part of what our spending is for the year, and it helps us be able to do what we want during the year and provide great travel opportunities for our students.”

The ticket prices ranged from $10-20, depending on whether or not the person buying would like to have general or reserved seating. Kids under 5 were free, and student admissions cost $10 for a general admissions ticket with an ID.

This event took place in the MHS auditorium and was the first time this year that Show Choir performed their full routines in full costume.

The concert included full show performances by all three choirs: Sound FX, the all-boy group; Lights, the all-girl group and Sound, the co-ed group.

“We’ve got a nice mix of different songs this year. For Sound, it’s their 20th anniversary, so we’ve brought back songs from the past 20 years that they perform,” said Bellas. “We have some oldies but goodies, [including] a Bon Jovi song. We have a little bit of everything. Lights has some more current music [that they sing in their program].”

This annual concert is put on in order to raise funds for the Show Choirs’ costumes, makeup (for the girls), shoes, transportation expenses, food and hotel rooms.

“Last year, we raised about $15,000, which is really useful for us because we don’t like having to pay too much. Here, we only pay about $350 [after fundraisers],” said Junior Thomas Ferro, member of Sound and Sound FX. “It’s really nice to have these big fundraisers, so we don’t have to pay too much money to go to these competitions, and we still have fun while doing them.”

Without fundraising, the students would be paying around $10,000 a year to make sure they could fill in each piece of the puzzle that creates this award-winning choir program.

Immediately following the performances, community bakeries and businesses provided all-you-can-eat desserts where attendees enjoyed sweet treats with their favorite choir members and spent quality time with friends and family.

Another incentive the program included was a raffle for which attendees could purchase tickets. The prizes this year included two theatre tickets to the Marriott, a Samsung Galaxy 4 Tablet, several different dinner gift certificates and free oil changes.

Besides the fundraising aspect of the event, Spotlight helped set the tone for the rest of the Show Choirs’ competition season by allowing the members to get out their first-show nerves in front of friends and family.

“It’s a good experience for the new people to see how performing the whole show in front of an audience feels,” said Junior Hannah Weiss, member of Lights.

Students and staff were encouraged to come out and support the Show Choir program in order to help the Show Choir reach their goal of raising $12,000. The Show Choir ended up raising more than $11,000.

“[I enjoyed the Spotlight event] because usually in school assemblies or events, we don’t get to see shows like the Show Choir,” said Joselle Escobar, junior. “It was really cool to see what they really do and see some of my friends perform.”

Staff, students and family members are encouraged to continue their support of the Show Choirs by attending their performances throughout their competition season.


Q and A with the new show choir director, Stevee Bellas: 

Stevee Bellas, choir teacher and director of the Show Choir group, Lights, and co-director of the co-ed group, Sound, is new to MHS this year after the departure of 13-year-long Show Choir Director John Neubauer. As the first semester comes to a close and the Show Choir competition season begins, Bellas explains her background as well as her first experiences with MHS.

Q: What was your music background in high school and college?

A: In high school, I participated in school choir and many theatre productions. Outside of school, I did dance and sang in the Palatine Children’s Chorus.

Q: What singing groups or show choirs were you apart of in high school and college?

A: In college, I sang with the University of Illinois Chamber Singers and served as the Undergraduate Assistant for the University of Illinois Women’s Glee Club. I also co-founded and directed an a cappella group that was apart of the Women’s Glee Club.

Q: What have you most enjoyed about MHS so far?

A: I really love how supportive all of the teachers have been of anything that I need. It’s my first year teaching, so I have a lot of questions about how things work and what to do when [certain things] happen. I’ve never felt that anything that I’ve asked has been a stupid question; there’s always someone I can go to if I need help with something, so I really love the community that’s here between the students and the staff.

Q: What has been the most challenging part of being the Show Choir director or a new teacher?

A: I think the most challenging part for me is finding new ways to challenge the kids every week because we see this music and the same performance for the whole school year. I don’t want them to become bored with it as soon as they learn it, so making sure that they’re engaged and keeping them excited has been challenging but fun.

Q: What are you most looking forward to for the rest of the year?

A: The Show Choir competitive season, of course, will be really fun. Also, [I am looking forward to] the rest of the concerts with Show Choir and concert choir and seeing how much both groups can grow.