As COVID-19 continues to restrict people from normal activities, many have found themselves thinking about how they took things for granted in the past. Numerous anticipated plans have been canceled, and people have been left feeling “human-deprived,” as some students put it. One program in particular, Valencia High School’s choral program, decided to virtually celebrate, in remembrance of the past year.
Utilizing the quarantine-popular app Zoom, VHS’ choral director Mrs. Christine Tavares-Mocha invited choir students and parents to attend a modified version of the annual choir banquet. Although this year’s meeting was held online, many people worked hard to put it together and allow choir members to gather together once more. Everyone was able to express their gratitude towards the program, which definitely made the mood more emotional from the start.
The entire choir reminisced together when going through a slideshow of memories from the school year. The nostalgia the group felt that day reminded everyone of the memorable experiences from the first semester, and surprisingly, also the distance learning portion as well. In addition, the choir followed the normal choir banquet’s tradition by announcing winners of awards, done to recognize those who persevered the most, and appointed new choir council members for the next school year.
One choir member stated, “Although we were stuck in our homes, we were still able to all sing together, as a choir. Even if we didn’t get to perform at our usual school concerts or even physically go to class, the fact that we were still able to do all of that virtually was enough. And I’m so grateful that nobody just gave up on choir, and instead we were just able to adapt to the new changes, and continue to do what we love. In this year, I’ve experienced performing a solo both at a physical choir concert and a virtual choir concert, and I’ve got to say that it really feels different, but in the end you are still singing for a live audience; an audience that will support you and cheer you on. And I’m so thankful for that.”
As a surprise for the seniors, who were saying their final goodbyes after years of participation, the juniors had put together a song with a video titled “Me From You.” One senior said, “The lyrics really resonated with me. I feel so happy that I’m surrounded by such an amazing group of people! The fact that everyone put their time and effort into creating a piece for us…I can’t describe how much I appreciate it.” The project was heartwarming for everyone and showed great support for the entire choir family.
Everyone has lost a couple months to the pandemic, yet it has pushed people to look for the positive side of the situation. COVID-19 was certainly a significant misfortune that has troubled many lives, but staying strong during this time has come with many benefits. It is wonderful that people were able to acknowledge that everyday routines were taken for granted, and now that everything’s changed, uplifting and strengthening each other is so important.
Jasmine Jhun, Grade 9
Valencia High School