Singing and dancing for scholarships
Singing, dancing and scholarships will be the focus when a high-energy show choir from the University of Wisconsin-Madison takes the stage this weekend at Rosemount High School.
The Wisconsin Singers, a glee club-style group featuring UW-Madison’s top singers and dancers, will perform a fundraising show at 6:30 p.m. Feb. 16 at the RHS Performing Arts Center. The show, called Hot! Hot! Hot! is written by Robert Dietz, an arranger for the television show The Sing Off! and choreographed by Broadway professionals. It features music from Ella Fitzgerald and the Beatles as well as current stars like Maroon 5 and Katy Perry.
Choir director Steven Albaugh has put together a choir of local elementary and middle school students to perform along with the Wisconsin group.
The Rosemount performance is a fundraiser for the RHS choir’s scholarship fund. Scholarships help pay for students’ private voice lessons or for expenses associated with qualifying for state or national honor choirs.
The choir doesn’t often focus on raising money for those scholarships, choosing instead to collect money for trips or its music library. But Albaugh has said helping students expand their musical experiences is important for the choir.
“We have just found that we have a need as the program continues to grow and has students that are achieving beyond what we can imagine,” Albaugh said. “Students who are making national honor choirs with expenses beyond what we can imagine.
“We want to do something to help our students and this seemed like the perfect opportunity.”
The choir found corporate sponsors to pay for the Wisconsin Singers’ appearance, so all money raised through ticket sales will go to scholarships.
Sunday’s performance will be a homecoming for one student who should be familiar with the RHS stage. 2013 RHS graduate Luke Banchy is a first-year performer with the Wisconsin Singers.
“I can’t wait to go back and perform on my hometown stage,” Banchy said. “It’s going to be a great experience.”
Albaugh expects a good show, too.
“They’re going to see really, really high-level performances both in singing and dancing,” he said. “We’re looking forward to it.”