Christmas Bells Ring on the Zoom Call

December 17, 2020

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Christmas time is upon us and, for Pottsgrove, that usually comes along with the choir coming from class to class to sing some classic Christmas songs. However, the choir cannot roam the halls and engage students in massive, joyous sing alongs due to the Coronavirus pandemic. 

The choir, who used to recoil at the thought of having to perform the Hallelujah Chorus, now is missing bringing delight to parents, teachers, relatives, and fellow students through their Christmas carols and concerts. The choir does not want the pandemic to demolish the spirit of Christmas, so they are evolving to the new normal and planning a virtual Christmas caroling event as we speak. Naysa Felix, Pottsgrove junior and one of the alto section leaders, states, “I honestly think that our virtual caroling is a good solution to us having to be at home. I will say it does take additional time and effort for us to record and edit everything together, but it’s fun nonetheless. And it also allows everyone to put their great ideas together!” The choir split up into four sections based off of their voice parts. Those four voice parts are soprano, alto, tenor, and bass. Each of those groups were sent into breakout rooms in order to pick a song, collaborate with one another, organize how this plan will be executed on a Jamboard, and help each other learn the music. Multiple ideas have been flowing around within the choir the past couple of weeks and the set lists among each of the voice parts has been constructed.

You’re probably wondering what repertoire will be incorporated in this performance. The choir has devised an eclectic array of songs that will be sure to put everyone in the yuletide spirit. Each voice part in the choir has decided to tackle their own song to organize, practice, and put together for the Pottsgrove community to enjoy. The sopranos have decided to sing the traditional song O Holy Night, composed by Adolphe Adam and has lyrics by Placide Cappeau, that has fueled Christmas memories since 1847. The altos are going to be singing the lighthearted holiday song Let It Snow with the modern twist of it being in the style in which Pentatonix sang it on their album entitled A Pentatonix Christmas. The tenors are going to be singing the elegant song Carol of the Bells by lyricist Peter J. Wilhousky and composer Mykola Leontovych. The basses will be singing You’re a Mean One Mr. Grinch from everyone’s favorite Christmas TV movie, How the Grinch Stole Christmas. At least one of these songs will have everyone belting out the lyrics while they are watching the choir’s Christmas caroling video. 

A positive thing about the manner in which Christmas caroling will happen this year is that anyone who wants to can watch it and that includes students, teachers, relatives, and honestly anyone who can access the link. In years prior, if the choir had missed your room on the rounds in which they were roving around the halls, you missed out on seeing and being a part of the sing alongs. This year there are almost no excuses to not view this performance. The performance will completely be on a virtual platform and information will be coming out shortly about how you can view this performance. 

The choir shows another example in the grit that they have their attempts to maintain Pottsgrove traditions even during these unprecedented circumstances. The choir is incredibly excited to share the final product of the recordings with the whole school. The final product is planned to be released around the end of the last week before Christmas break. Be sure to get a cup of hot cocoa and put on a Santa hat, and check out the choir’s performance when the link to the video is released school wide. 

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