In honor of the Bethany High Senior Choir’s performance and Silver Diploma rating in Singapore, a Homecoming concert at Bethany was planned in short span of 9 days!
The 2-hour program featured special excerpts from the other Bethany Institutions.
There were 2 shows running from 5-6: 45 pm and 7-9pm, and both were packed, full- house shows!
- Bethany Junior Schools Choir performed the song from Mathilda, WHEN I GROW UP, which was introduced by a super cute and eloquent 4-year-old.
- Pre Primary Department Choir sang and danced to the boogie-woogie ROCK AROUND THE CLOCK
- Bethany High, Sarjapur, performed a highly exciting African folk song called BONSE ABA complete with choreographed moves.
- Primary Department captivated the audience with their renditions of EARTH IS MY HOME and the anthem MUSIC CHANGES THE WORLD
- Middle School performed the song FINGERPRINT OF GOD composed by Mr. Saroop Oommen, HOD of Music & Drama Dept. The song was based on the tragic story of the Bethany Founder Mrs. Mignon David, who rose like a phoenix after the loss of her 2 sons in a swimming accident and started the Bethany Home School in 1963. Apart from the Choir, 2 talented dancers conveyed how negativity can be conquered by the light of positivity.
- Special School, performed a choreography to the theme ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE, with special needs children which was simply scintillating.
- Junior College, presented the DANCE OF LIFE, a spell-binding fusion of Kathak, Bharatnatyam and Odissi Indian Classical dances, with a gripping narrative explaining how life goes from Birth, to tragedies of life and the victory when life’s purposes are realised. Again connected to the birth centenary of our founder Mrs. Mignon David. At the end, all 3 dancers came together still dancing in their individual genres, but yet looking in sync – it was a goose bumps moment!!
- High School, dancers performed a dance called CLASSICAL ALLEGRO, which combined the nuances of western dance with Kathak! Brilliantly executed.
- National Institute of Open Schooling (NIOS) performed a Hip Hop based dance routine for the song PERM, compete with gansta hats and bling shoes!
- 3 students from the Bethany Alumni, lead by professional dancer Brian Shaji, performed an eye-popping dance-off complete with some comic elements!
- The Bethany Music Department, performed their own arrangement of the song LEARNING TO BE THE LIGHT in an interesting negatron genre.
- SICF PARENTS: The parents of the Choristers who traveled to Singapore. What fun! Lead by pianist/conductor Dr. Maya Mascarenhas, the SICF parents pulled out all the stops and performed a Beatles medley, making the crowd join in for a classic sing-a-long session!
THE FINALE – Bethany High Senior Choir
To end the great evening, the moment everyone was waiting for, the Bethany High, Senior Choir took the stage, conducted by Mr. Saroop Oommen. Resplendent in their quasi Indian costumes, a lacy shrug on the girls and a golden shiny waist-coat on the boys, the choir’s entry itself was majestic! The pieces they performed include:
1. Intonation Showcase: The choir started off with a unique showcase of vocal dynamics & intonation – the 4 groups that make up the choir, had to speak out different phrases in coordinated volume levels mimicking a crowd of people speaking, soft to medium to loud to super loud – all in tandem with small hand gestures from the conductor. And then suddenly they had a perfectly timed foot stomp & hand clap, and then back again to the speaking, interspaced with a Yawn sound and sleep gestures and back to a crescendo of the talking to a super loud volume – and as suddenly as they began, snapped to silence!
- Sadhvartha: The Choirs favorite song, of which Mr. Raghu Dixit’s Instagram post went viral, was the next song by the choir. Incidentally, the composer of the song, Mr. Wesley P Kuruvilla was present, beaming in the front row. In his words, “I gave you a baby, and you’ve made it all grown up!” The audience lapped up the Carnatic elements and the Bharatnatyam vocal percussion.
- Adagio in G Minor: The persona of the choir changes completely for this song as it’s specifically Western Classical, and complete with the lilting melody, a western flute, and piano, the song transports you immediately, to a European scenic venue, complete with its Latin words ‘Kyrie Eleison’ (Lord have mercy), ‘Requiem’ (in remembrance) and ‘Aeternam’ (forever to come).
- THIS IS ME – This song, from the blockbuster movie the Greatest Showman has been rocking this year’s charts, with the heart cry THIS IS ME. The choir’s rendition had choreographed segments too which added impetus to lyrics like ‘Won’t let them break me down to dust!’ The audience couldn’t help but join in clapping to the pulsating beat and passionate faces!
- SUPERSTITION – Purposely kept as the last song, due to its intricate blues/rock harmonies and highly choreographed show choir format. The crowd went wild when the song ended with a flip and stance by 2 male dancers from the Choir! At that very moment the rest of the choir, bunched up and froze into a jazz hands position! Scintillating and super thrilling!
STANDING OVATION: The Audience went wild and then it happened!! Row by row, the audience rose to their feet and soon the whole auditorium was offering a Standing Ovation, much to the surprise of the conductor and choir!! Truly a divine moment!
Certificates: To end the evening, Mrs. Yasmin Sengupta lead the awards ceremony where each chorister was given
- a Certificate from the Singapore Festival organizers,
- a Certificate from Bethany High and
- a plaque with a beautiful photograph of the choir on stage in Singapore.
A grand, fitting ending to the last 3 months of a dream coming full circle into a victorious Silver rating and a journey of learning, fun and bringing the international flavor a lot closer to home!