Photo: Joanne Haner

Singing grams: behind the scenes

in Entertainment/Features by

Whether you like Valentine’s Day or not, most Upper School students look forward to watching and/or receiving the A Capella choir’s singing grams.

“I love that throughout my high school experience, [Valentine’s Day singing grams] haven’t changed. It’s a cute little tradition that is engrained in the A cappella choir,” first-year-choir member senior Hannah Ellowitz said.

A tremendous amount of practice and preparation go into the group’s fundraiser. Funds from singing grams, Halloween grams and candy cart sales all go towards trips the chorus takes to Carnegie Hall every other year.

“The preparation for singing grams is the most difficult part of it. We spend weeks printing schedules and counting money,” A capella choir president senior Stephanie Berger said. Since singing gram sales stop only a few days before Feb. 14, the student choir has to work quickly and efficiently in order to have everything ready for the big day.

The incredibly talented Heritage A cappella group sings different songs every year. There are always two groups of male singers and two groups of female singers; each group sings their own song. This year, the boys sang “I Want to Hold Your Hand” by the Beatles and the girls sang “Honey, Honey” from the popular movie adaption of “Mamma Mia!” The weeks of practice can be sensed in the passion and harmony from the singers’ voices.

Oddly enough, A cappella members can also receive singing grams.

“We actually receive a handful of singing grams for A cappella members. We all stand in a circle and sing to each other. It’s cute,” Berger said. “I love the bonding and friendship that comes from spending the entire day with other singers.”

Sometimes, the students receiving the grams awkwardly stand while the choir serenades them in front of the class. Many of us know this feeling all too well.

“The best part of the singing grams is when the students being sung to play around with us and dance or pretend to have a good time,” Ellowitz said. “It makes it less uncomfortable for them for sure.” Maybe next year, more will take Ellowitz’s advice to have more fun with the tradition.

“They bring a little more joy to our campus and are so fun to participate in,” Berger said.

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