Choir Performs On The Big Stage


It’s not every day that a college choir sings on the big stage, but that’s exactly what happened when the Glendale Community College Campus Singers took the stage at the John Anson Ford Amphitheatre in Hollywood, Calif., on Sept. 14.

“When they [Kayamanan Ng Lahi] were coming up with their ideas for the Ford performance, they decided they would like to ask us to sing for their performance,” Peter Green, music professor and division chair of Visual and Performing arts, said, adding that “the choir had a great time.” For the second time in a row, the Choir partnered with Kayamanan Ng Lahi, a Filipino Dance group in the Greater Los Angeles Area in efforts to keep alive the cultural dance forms of the Philippines.

Green’s team of singers sang three songs in Tagalog, one of which was from the movie “Hercules.” They also sang backup for four songs for American Idol singer Anthony Fedorov. Deedee Magno Hall and Jennifer Paz from broadway also joined in on the performance fun.

“It was wonderful getting to know my culture’s different influencers – since I am Filipino- American,” said Cecile Santiago, a music major and soprano in the Choir. “I was able to learn a lot more about the Philippines, who I am and where my family and I come from. As a group, we all loved the feeling of being backstage and getting more experience as performers. It was fun to be a part of the production and to practice with other performers, not only singers, and see the way they rehearse and perform.”

Campus connections were also strengthened, as the GCC Filipino Club attended the event to further embrace their culture.

After a summer spent rehearsing and practicing songs in Tagalog, 25 GCC singers were ready  for nothing but the spotlight. “The most rewarding part was getting to be a part of the Kayamanan Ng Lahi family, they are wonderful people and really welcomed us with all their hearts. We have become one big family,” said Santiago.

Previously, Green who invited the Filipino Dance group to dance at the Concert Singers performance at GCC. Some time later, Green received an exciting invitation for further partnership between the two groups.

It wasn’t only a great opportunity for the GCC Choir to get to perform on such a big stage, but also a great learning experience for all.

“It was a lot of work and time for the choir and me, but it was definitely worth it,” Green mentioned. “It brought the group closer together. We had to learn to work in different situations than we usually do – we had to follow the different cues of the dancers when to come on stage and more.”

Despite the busy nature of its agenda, the GCC Choir continues to aim for the big stage and to perform at more events. They are currently preparing for a concert at the end of the semester. They will also be performing at the Glendale Forest Lawn on Dec. 11, as part of an annual service for those who passed away during the year.

“Musicians have rare opportunities like this, opportunities for inclusion and immersion into a lush and gorgeous world, just through sound,” Hasanna Jackson, vocalist at the GCC Concert singers said. “We all come from somewhere, but music can always bring us home.”