On each T-shirt of the Valencia High School, VHS, choir members are the words “Inspire, Uplift, and Cultivate Community.” VHS’s choir never turns down an opportunity to help out others, no matter what their background is. On Saturday, October 19th, the VHS choir performed at Gilchrist farm, located in Santa Clarita, and held a bake sale there to entertain the people at the event. Gilchrist Farm is a public ranch that allows people to participate in exciting activities or host fun parties. From September 28th through October 31st, Gilchrist is having their harvest festival and pumpkin patch. The VHS Choir was lucky to be able to take part in this special event. Students worked hard, practicing beforehand and making sure that they were ready for the show.
Children and their families arrived at Gilchrist farm to have fun and pick their pumpkins during this harvest season. During the afternoon, the choir members showcased their songs, featuring music from different movies and Broadway shows. The choir’s six ensembles (Concert Choir, Treble Vocal Ensemble, Mixed Choir, 2’n4 Jazz, and Soundwaves Jazz) put their all into each song and knew it was okay to make mistakes. Despite some difficulties, such as soundtrack malfunctions, microphone problems, or bees flying into people’s faces, no one was fazed. VHS’s choir director, Christine Tavares-Mocha, reminded everyone beforehand that the performance did not have to be perfect because having fun is what’s most important. Although people got hay on their behinds each time they sat down and there were bees flying everywhere, we all had a great time. The choir adapted to the different environment of the outdoor stage and loved performing for everyone. The audience seemed to enjoy it very much as well.
In addition, the choir members also held a bake sale after their performance to help raise money to support the program. There were also other groups, such as Canyon High’s Choir Booster Club, selling their own foods or crafts at the farm. Each student had baked homemade goods the night before or the morning of that day, as choir homework, so they could sell them at Gilchrist farm. These baked treats did not have to look fancy, because the taste was what mattered. The Halloween themed goods raised around $600, which was a tremendous success. Students also received two hours of community service hours for helping the people to have a great time.
After singing and performing in the hot weather, students were free to explore the farm and have fun themselves. Gilchrist farm featured a corn maze, where people try to make their way towards a large stack of hay. Other events such as an archery zone or slides allowed people to relive their childhood. Choir members met new people and got together to make memories.
Each member of VHS’s choir is glad that he or she was able to participate in this wonderful experience and is looking forward to future events that involve helping others. Mrs. Mocha was impressed and proud. As she states, “The choir family hopes to continue to not only making good music, but also good people”.
Jasmine Jhun, Grade 9
Valencia High School