The Student News Site of Renton High School

RHS Hawk Eye

The Student News Site of Renton High School

RHS Hawk Eye

The Student News Site of Renton High School

RHS Hawk Eye


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2nd Trimester Choir Concert

Renton High School´s acapella choir delivered an astonishing performance at the IKEA Performing Arts Center on March 12, 2024 for their 2nd trimester choir concert. Not only was the performance delivered from our RHS acapella and mix choir students, but it was also delivered from the Dimmitt Middle School choir. Families and school staff listened to various diverse songs, including listening to some of our RHS acapella students showcasing themselves with their very own solo or duet. Meet some of our RHS acapella students who revealed to us the choir´s commitment and effort in preparing for the concert, as well as revealing what brought them excitement.

(Abby Doran at the backstage of the concert, who is an alto in the RHS acapella.)

There are four sections in an acapella: Soprano (higher female voice), alto (lower female voice), bass (lower male voice), and tenor (higher male voice). Many students from each section showed exceeding excitement for a unique Samoa song called Minoi Minoi, which included dance moves and a lively chant to this song´s performance. Angela Fiame (soprano) led the chant of the song along with the choir and helped lead the dance moves of the song with two other lead dancers: David Gonzalez (bass) and Yafeth Rivera Dias (tenor). David was very excited for the opportunity he would get from the song Minoi Minoi. He shares, “The Minoi Minoi dance because I get to shout and it’s gonna be a fun experience.¨ He and the rest of the choir called it a pleasure to not only sing on stage, but to incorporate other types of movements and entertainment as they sing along. Compared to other acapella students, such as Mariah Braganza (alto) and Austin Abellon (bass), they were most excited about seeing the choir´s progress and hard work into action. Mariah noticed significant changes to how different students have evolved in their time being part of the choir. She tells us, ¨I’m excited to hear how we’ve progressed from the start of the year till now. Because before, some people were a little more anxious to perform. But now, I think they’ve gotten a little more comfortable.¨ With the change some choir students have made to their confidence, it truly affected how the choir has also changed and shows great determination the choir gives to others to help them grow into their best version. 

(Angela Fiame at the backstage of the concert, who is a soprano in the RHS acapella.) 

Before the concert, they faced many challenges as they rehearsed. One of the common challenges they faced was learning the lyrics, sound, and being able to sing accurate notes. Especially if it is a new song or if a person is new to the choir. Abby Doran (alto) found it difficult when trying to learn a specific part of a song, it takes a longer time to understand and get the correct notes. Similarly to David, who is used to his lower singing range and found it a challenge getting the high notes.

Furthermore, the choir has an expected effort they all assume from everyone. Georyne Agdeppa (soprano) explains, ¨Getting other people to put in the same effort and get in that community building for all the parts.¨ The amount of effort students put into rehearsing/practicing were key to their collaboration, including practicing with other people. Yafeth Rivera Dias tells us why this might be a challenge as well. He says, ¨Practicing with other people because some people…might not know exactly all their parts, so it messes up everyone else. I think them practicing [more] would improve themselves, which therefore improves us. I’m proud of them too.¨ In addition, there is growing pressure when rehearsal/practice comes at the last minute as Ryan Nguyen (tenor) mentioned. He also adds finalizing to memorize lyrics and notes is a challenge. For some students, they have a harder thing to face. Austin struggled with his time management while he currently takes on the IB program and is a choir student at the same time. He shares with us, ¨It’s hard to stay on their pace because I have to work on it on my own time, instead of with them since I don’t have the class.¨ Angela and Georyne believe the excitement and nervousness students felt before the concert can exceed too much and become a challenge that the choir teacher, Mr. Lim has to stop the music to get everyone in control again. 

(Ryan Nguyen at the backstage of the concert, who is a tenor in the RHS acapella.)

Above all the challenges, the students have gone through numerous strategies to face them. The strategies include being able to practice and perform individually. Yafeth observed students preparing themselves by individually singing in front of the class to a specific part of a song that will be performed. He explains the benefit of singing to the class: ¨We can practice our volume of how loud we are in front of people. Because there are some sections that are quite loud enough or are just getting some parts down.¨ Hearing students in front of the class can help the choir reflect on the balance of sound in each section and allow students to reflect on their own progress. It is also beneficial as students continue using their music sheets. Ryan tells us how using music sheets helps him. He says, ¨The more we use our music sheet and we sing out, the more we can put it into our memories. That way we can sing better from our memories. . “This is one strategy to support students memorizing multiple songs. Georyne reveals the choir practices with their section by going into separate rooms as a group and listening/singing to recordings together in class. Simply for David, Mariah, and Angela, they are better prepared for the concert by creating repetition as they practice and make sure to go through songs as needed, whether it is for memorizing lyrics or getting to know a song better.  

Along with the choir performance came the solo and duets from RHS acapella students. Almost everyone was inspired to take the opportunity and try out to be chosen to perform. Mariah and Ryan described what inspired them to want to take the chance of doing a solo or duet. For Mariah, it was the positivity she received from the RHS choir teacher, Mr. Lim. She says, “Mr. Lim really encourages us to put our all into singing and to challenge ourselves. So I want to show him that he’s not just talking to a wall.¨ She would like to represent to her choir teacher his encouragement and support which turns into a positive impact on everyone in class. Differently from Ryan, he was inspired by the people who have the same passion for music/singing. He shares, ¨I’ve been inspired by many people and they influenced me to become one of them and I’m really passionate about singing.¨ As he watches people perform and sing without a choir, he hopes to create the same experience with himself. 

(David Gonzalez at the backstage of the concert, who is a bass in the RHS acapella.)

¨The RHS acapella is the one thing I look forward to everyday,¨ said Jerry Lim, the RHS choir teacher. Following the event, Mr. Lim was relieved after overcoming the stressful moments of getting everyone prepared and other necessary things completed in time for the concert. Especially relieved to have seen the RHS acapella conquer through the performances with the Dimmitt Middle School choir. When Mr. Lim received the news that Dimmitt Middle School finally had a choir teacher, he welcomed them to join the 2nd trimester choir concert. It was a great opportunity for two schools to sing together. However, deciding what songs would suit the middle schoolers and the high schoolers came with a challenge. When Mr. Lim talked with the Dimmitt choir teacher, Havilah Rand, about what songs the Dimmitt choir would like to sing, he found that the Dimmitt choir had already made the decision what songs they preferred. This affected Mr. Lim´s plan for the songs he had believed would be performed. Therefore, the RHS acapella also had to go through the changes of song selections and re-learn songs they had already learned and performed before. Although the acapella students enjoyed and wanted to sing the old version they had already learned, they needed to know the simpler versions of the songs chosen instead in order to make the middle schoolers comfortable singing along with them at the concert. 

(RHS and Dimmitt Middle School choir students on stage at the concert.)

Despite these challenges, Mr. Lim was very proud of his choir students.¨I thought overall as a group, the students did very nicely. They showed a lot of leadership, especially acapella students.¨ Choir students did an excellent collaboration as they sang. While acapella students set a great example for the rest of the choir, including the middle schoolers for what is appropriate on stage. Mr. Lim added, ¨Even the unfortunate incident of a student passing out was not a horrible thing. She was not hurt and we were able to move on.¨ There had been an unexpected event from a Dimmitt Middle School choir student that occurred on stage. However, he can reassure that the student is doing very well now from what had happened. In all, Mr. Lim and the RHS acapella students hoped the audience had a tremendous time at the concert. When Mr. Lim looked at the audience he stated, ¨I felt they were very positive so I think they enjoyed it.¨ He was pleased hearing the encouragement the audience had to offer. But having said that, ¨Some things I would hope for is maybe some of the over enthusiastic crowd to tone it down a little bit. Usually it’s a friend of the student in the choir…they want to show their support.¨ He truly appreciated the audience cheers towards the choirs, but wishes it was shown appropriately from louder crowds.

(RHS and Dimmitt Middle School choir students on stage at the concert.)

(Dimmitt choir teacher conducting RHS and Dimmitt Middle School choir students.) 

Compared to past choir concerts, Mr. Lim called this recent concert more challenging with not only the combined performance with Dimmitt Middle School, but the choir had worked on more difficult songs this school year. A song they performed called Dayung Sampan, was a song arranged by Mr. Lim, who describes it as not an easy song. He exclaimed, ¨You guys did well enough to pull it through. It was not the best that we could have done, but it was well enough that most people would go, so I felt good about that.¨ Furthermore, he would like to give recognition to his students, especially his quiet workers, ¨a lot of the time the quiet workers are the ones that work really hard and they don’t get enough of the recognition…Because I have to focus on the ones who are loud and noisy.¨ He gives thanks to those students who allow him to deal with certain people who take most of the attention.

(RHS choir students, RHS choir teacher, and Dimmitt Middle School choir students on stage at the concert.)

As we look forward to the final RHS choir concert 2023-2024, it will contain songs the acapella is more familiar with, for example, popular tunes and broadway music. Mr. Lim can assure everyone it will be enjoyable and will hold a bitter-sweet emotion. It will be especially memorable to the RHS acapella because it will be the last concert they have as a group with the people they have worked together with throughout the school year. ¨Some of you guys will move on because you’re graduating. Some of you guys will move on because you´re not able to fit it into your schedule. Some people decide that’s not what they want to do, right?¨ There are many changes that occur reaching the end of the year and plenty of decisions to make when thinking about what choir students want their next school year to look like. For some cases, others are simply on their way to graduating. Mr. Lim tries to give recognition to all those seniors who have supported the choir. Especially the seniors who have been part of the RHS acapella for a long time. Although we will feel the bittersweetness in the air, it will be an enormous celebration for what the RHS acapella has done together all school year. 

Thank you so much to everyone who came to the concert and gave extreme support to the music program. Also, thank you to the Dimmitt Middle School choir, mix choir, and acapella students for striving throughout the night of the concert. Thank you to everyone behind the scenes who helped put the event together and to Mr. Lim for representing the RHS choirs. We look forward to seeing everyone again and seeing new people at our very last concert before the 2023-2024 school year ends. Ultimately, we wish all choirs good luck on their next performances!

Sources (Interviewees): 

Choir Teacher

  • Jerry Lim


  • Mariah Braganza 
  • Abby Doran 


  • Austin Abellon 
  • David Gonzalez 


  • Ryan Nguyen 
  • Yafeth Rivera Dias 


  • Angela Fiame 
  • Georyne Agdeppa 
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About the Contributors
Sherilyn Bullanday
Sherilyn Bullanday, Journalist / Publishing & Marketing Director
My name is Sherilyn and I am a sophomore in high school. I am very passionate about music especially singing, writing creatively, and reading horror/mystery stories. I hope to somehow use these passions in the future after high school!
Hanna Delele
Hanna Delele, Journalist / Publishing & Marketing Director
I'm a sophomore, I'm left handed and I LOVE JOURNALISM hehehehehe :3  
Maizey Wheeler
Maizey Wheeler, Journalist / Photographer
I am in 10th grade and I love running.