Show Choir Sweep: Sound, Reverb, Noise win multiple awards


Photo by Bill Aquino

Sound performing one of their songs, “Let Me Make You Proud” at the Chocolate City Showcase in Burlington, WI. This was one of the songs in their set list that helped them win grand champions at the competition. Said Choral Director Cory Thompson, “This was the first time in my 7 years of directing Sound that we were in 1st place after prelims and then ended up holding the lead and winning.”

Kayla Baltazar, News-Features/Opinion Editor

  Waking up early and arriving at MHS at 6:15 in the morning doesn’t sound ideal to anyone– but show choir’s Sound and Reverb didn’t let that faze them. After a hour-long bus ride to Burlington, Wisconsin, the show choirs arrived at their first competition of the year.

  They didn’t leave empty-handed either.

  Both groups finished as the champions of their respective divisions. Sound won best vocals, best choreography and best crew. Reverb won best vocals and best choreography in the prep division. Noise, the show choir’s band, won best band in both divisions. 

  Choral Director Cory Thompson explained how nerve-wracking yet exciting awards were.

  “During prelim awards, I was really nervous and excited.  You never really know how competitions are going to go, and with it being the first of the season, you really don’t have a sense of how each group will be received,” said Thompson. “At this particular competition, there was a good amount of shifting in placements from prelims to finals, so when I started hearing the shifting– like the group in 2nd place after prelims getting 5th after the final round. I was really nervous.”

  Not only was this the first show choir competition of the year, but it was also Reverb’s debut as a prep group. Both Thompson and Reverb were nervous to see what the feedback for them would be like, and were thrilled to be well-received.

  “I was just thrilled for Reverb,” Thompson reaccounted. “The changes in our [show choir] program at the end of last year were really emotional for both the students and myself, and I was nervous about how the new format of our show choir program would go.  It was just really reassuring to have Reverb get such great feedback and accolades their first time out.”

  Freshman Jasmine Tigley is part of Reverb, and remembered feeling the nerves both before and at the competition.

  “Leading up to the competition, I felt both nervous and excited. I was excited to see other groups and bond with everyone but I was also anxious to perform,” said Tigley. “It made me nervous not only because it was my first competition, but because it was also Reverb’s and I had a solo. I felt like if I didn’t perform well enough, it would also impact how people saw Reverb as a whole. We all really wanted to leave an excellent first impression on everyone.”

  Despite being met with the hardships of this being her first year, she has risen to the challenge and met it with great success; Tigley won best female soloist.

  “The awards ceremony was truly a thrilling event. I don’t think anyone in Sound, Reverb or Noise expected us to win so many awards. Receiving the medal for best female soloist felt– and still feels– so amazing,” said Tigley. “There really aren’t any words to describe how great it felt. I remember crying in the choir practice rooms after Spotlight, thinking I didn’t do good enough, so winning that award gave me a lot of reassurance. It felt like all my hard work paid off. I think that was the first time in a while I’ve actually felt proud of myself.”

  Along with Tigley, Senior Will Gonzalez won best male soloist with his solo in Sound. 

  “Awards were pretty amazing. None of us in the group have experienced anything like that in sound,” Gonzalez said. “It was pretty amazing to win best soloist after struggling with that solo for some time.”

  The success at this competition was not only seen as reassurance that all their hard work has paid off, but also as motivation to continue to improve as a show choir. 

  “For future competitions we will continue to clean and improve our show,” said Gonzalez. “We won’t give up just because we won once. We’ll keep driving to improve.”

  Thompson also noted that the judges notes and comments are an important part of their improvement, as their feedback helps them with “what adjustments need to be made for future competitions.”

  “We are working to solidify some changes we made during our first competition, and getting everything just stronger and cleaner.  We are cleaning some choreography that needed attention and really working on some vocal adjustments so we can knock it out of the park at our three competitions in February,” said Thompson. “Our goal is always to do our best onstage and leave nothing else out there.  We can’t control what other groups do, but we can control how solid our own show is, so that is our continued goal moving forward.”

  Overall, all the effort Sound, Reverb and Noise put in paid off. Said Thompson, “It was really just a celebration of the students’ hard work and dedication.”