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Centreville Choral Students Present 'Broadway Pops'

Get ready for "Broadway Pops," Centreville High's spring choral concert, June 4-5, at 7:30 p.m. in the school theater. Tickets are $3/students and $5/adults.

Choral director Lynne Babcock — who'll instead be piano accompanist for the event — said her students will put on a terrific performance.

"I'm proud of them," she said. "They're very talented. It's going to be a really enjoyable concert, and we'd like to see every seat filled."

The Women's Ensemble will sing a medley from the movie musical, "Anastasia," and Concert Choir will perform a medley by Andrew Lloyd Webber, including songs from "The Phantom of the Opera," "Evita" and "Jesus Christ, Superstar."

MICHELLE GAOUETTE sings "Memory" from "Cats," and Nichole Jewkes and Alex Blizniak perform a duet, "Love Changes Everything," from "Aspects of Love." The Symphonic Choir offers a medley from "Les Miserables," including the songs, "On My Own" and "I Dreamed a Dream."

Front N' Centre Show Choir offers its competition show of mainly Motown songs, such as Stevie Wonder's "Superstition" and Earth, Wind & Fire's "Fantasy." Chris Chang sings a solo, "Water Runs Dry," and Sarah Villyard and Sarah Lucas sing the "Fantasy" duet.

Performing a WWII song, "A Nightingale Sang in Berkeley Square," and the Joanie Mitchell tune, "Big, Yellow Taxi," is the Madrigal Ensemble. And all the choirs together sing the opener, "Telephone Hour," from "Bye, Bye, Birdie." They'll do likewise on the finale, two songs from the new musical, "Movin' Out," with music by Billy Joel.

"Each night, 10 selected senior soloists will perform songs they've chosen themselves and auditioned to sing in the show," said Babcock. "It's a tradition at the school that I'm continuing."

They are: Kaelyn Arnold, Tim Bartlett, Lindsey Bestebreutje, Chris Chang, Kevin Corcoran, Sarah Long, Mike Mohyla, Dana Moreno, Barbara Stucky and Sarah Villyard. And together, the seniors will perform John Lennon's "In My Life."

The medleys from "Anastasia," Webber and "Les Miserables" are all student-directed and choreographed. "They're so creative and come up with really fun ideas," said Babcock. "It teaches them leadership, organizational skills and staging. And it's nice for them to get direction from somebody besides me so they can see what it's like to be a director. That's one of the neat aspects of 'Broadway Pops.'"

Centreville band students also perform — primarily accompanying the Show Choir. On drums is Chris Barchet; bass, Dave Zemlan; guitar, Andrew McNeil; trumpets, Andrew Rexford and Kevin Fitzpatrick; trombone, Kyle Craig and tenor sax, Tim Dietz.

BABCOCK PRAISED Tara Penick-Edmundson, who teaches at the Richmond Ballet and choreographed Front N' Centre's competition show. "She's a thrill to work with — so talented and creative and a wonderful educator," said Babcock. "She does excellent work."

The band and Show Choir also received input and coaching from three of Babcock's Centreville colleagues — Bill Burke, guitar teacher and Performing Arts Department chair; band director Beth Boivin and drama director Mark Rogers — and from her husband Scott, producer of a national choral company, America Sings!

Additionally, she said, "I could not do a production of this kind without the help of all my parent volunteers. They do backstage supervision, run concessions and work as ushers."

Centreville's choral program will grow by about half, next year, "largely due to Liberty Middle choral director Nancy Hayes," said Babcock. "Her kids love to sing because of her. So they're musically well-trained when they come here, and that bodes well for our choral program's future."