Boy, there are some talented kids in Mitchell.
Last week’s 2014 Mitchell High School show choir dinner theater, at the Corn Palace, was the final chance to see Friend de Coup in action — and to support the group, since ticket sales were a fundraiser. It was also the celebration of the 30th anniversary of show choir in Mitchell, which meant students performed this year’s competition set, as well as competition sets from years past. (It obviously wouldn’t be a show choir night without at least one “Grease” song.)
Master of ceremonies Mel Olson sprinkled in humor, heart and a healthy dose of history — fitting, since he is a history teacher — noting that back when show choir started, it pre-dated many other Mitchell fine arts establishments, including the Area Community Theatre.
I went on Saturday, the final night of the performance, and was blown away. It was fun to watch. My personal favorite was the impressive cover of “Free Bird,” by Lynyrd Skynyrd. MHS’ show choir is more than just flashy costumes and spot-on vocals: there are some kids who could, and should, easily pursue careers in instrumental music.
My second favorite moment was the end, after all the seniors were recognized and it seemed like it was really starting to hit the kids that this was their last performance of the year — the last performance of ever, for some. After the performance, all the kids stood in a circle, arms around each other, and sang “Friends,” a 1987 Michael W. Smith song extolling the virtues of true friendship. You could hear the sniffles, whimpers and full-blown sobs from across the Corn Palace floor as they sang the song, which brought up a fair amount of nostalgia for me, too. It was a touching scene. And, it’s no wonder they’re so good by the time they’re seniors — they’re already great as Middle School students, as evidenced by Maximum Velocity’s performance on Saturday night.
Kudos to all the students involved, and to the parents, staff and school faculty who made it possible.