Choirs Unite

Mariana Aguirre, Staff Writer

Two choirs from Acalanes and one each from Las Lomas, Miramonte, and Campolindo united at the Lafayette Orinda Presbyterian church for a collaborative performance led by three different conductors. Even though natural disaster threatened to shake things up, singers resolved to deliver.

The all-women’s ensembles practiced all day Thursday, October 20th, in preparation for the concert that evening. They had learned all the songs at their respective schools, but this session was the first time they practiced them together.

Many girls found the non-competitive nature of the performance unusual.  Sophomore Cat Kolm said, “It was different.  We were collaborating to make something special.”

In addition to choir teachers Mark Roberts and Bruce Lengacher, from Campo and Acalanes respectively, the concert also featured Vancouver native Morna Edmundson. She flew down to California for one day: Lengacher invited her to conduct the ensembles over six months ago, and the two exchanged emails to decide on the score selection. Edmundson said: “[The students] actually talked about the songs… And I think they performed better with those talks.”

However, not everything went according to plan; two earthquakes interrupted the choirs. The first struck during the afternoon practice, leading to three student panic attacks. Another disrupted the Miramonte choir’s evening performance; yet, they kept singing despite the rumbling. “It was really impressive that they kept going!” Acalanes’ Sabrina Kenny exclaimed.

However, Miramonte junior Lydia Roybal claimed that the quake “really boosted us up!” The choir’s perseverance earned them a standing ovation.

New Campo teacher Roberts also received praise from sophomores Cathrina Kolm and Amanda Ratcliffe. “He’s doing a really good job of filling the shoes of Ms. Kikkawa,” they agreed.