The Spring Choral Concert on April 23 showcased Marlborough’s Chamber Choir, Concert Choir, Melodic Mustangs and Community Choir’s voices for a performance called, “What Happens When…”. The production celebrated and inspired change for a brighter future through the power of voices working in harmony, all presented on Vimeo. The following evening, “A Special Zoom Recital of Music,” featured the Instrumental Ensemble with a wide variety of music styles and ensembles. Each piece was performed with a work of art that related to the music.
“The meaning behind the songs we performed was to always have hope, even when things aren’t going your way they will get better if you just believe,” Melodic Mustang member Maniya ’26 said.
The students worked online all year, not practicing synchronically, but at home on their own time. The members finally heard what a piece sounded like as a whole after the videos had been edited. Music instructor Luke Rothchild and several other adults helped to edit the performance. Every Choir and Instrumental Ensemble member recorded themselves individually for the final video that would overlap their sound to create each song.
“When we listened to it all edited together, I felt extremely proud and accomplished,” Yuma ‘24 said. “Throughout distance learning, we haven’t been able to hear each others’ pitches, so it feels so great to finally listen to our voices combined.”
The Marlborough musicians and singers had to work hard to perfect their pieces online.
“In-person choir is more personal in terms of Ms. Lin helping each of us individually on how we can improve to make the overall choir sound more harmonious,” Hazel ‘24 said. “Because we don’t have that online, we have to trust in ourselves to perfect the song through practice and sometimes listening to recordings. To me, the hardest part is making a good recording with little to no mistakes.”
Instrumental Ensemble bassist Kylie ’21 learned discipline. Because most of the time her ensemble group met only once a week, she had to be diligent about setting aside time to practice on her own in order to not slow down the ensemble’s time together with questions or mistakes.
“I learned that music is incredibly precise, and it takes immense amounts of unnoticed time and effort to become a good musician,” Kylie said.
Being online also gave members an opportunity to retake their videos until desired. Francesca ’26 was less nervous because she knew the piece that was played was the best version she had. However, Kylie still felt a sense of performance nerves before sending in her recording.
“I still tried to view my phone camera as an in-person audience and played with the same energy I normally do when on stage,” Kylie said.
Not only did performers have to work hard on their technique and execution, but they also had to incorporate emotion and meaning into their music.
“I feel like to perfect a song you need to feel it and get emotionally connected to perfect it,” Melodic Mustang member Naomi ’24 said. Even if you’re not so confident with a piece, the way you perform can change it dramatically.”
Through age and maturity, pianist Sophia ’24 has become fond of piano, and no longer sees practice as a task.
“I have learned to like playing piano. Originally, it was a little bit of a chore, but now I genuinely enjoy being able to play,” Sophia-Maria said.
Members felt particularly enthralled by the pieces that were chosen.
Concert Choir member Alexis ’24’s favorite piece was “The Prayer” because of the piece’s meaning and beauty.
“The song was chosen to remember and honor those who we’ve lost during the pandemic, so I was able to incorporate this emotion into my singing to make it even more personal and wonderful to sing,” Alexis said.
Chamber Choir singer Maisie ’22 said her favorite song from the program this year was “Be the Change.”
“It’s the perfect song to end a concert with because of the joyous, unified feeling the ending of the song brings,” Maisie said.