Mountain View Choir sings at KSM

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Photo by Holly Honda

The Mountain View High School all-girls a capella choir performs songs for various KSM students on Feb. 23 in Mr. Dale Nitta’s classroom. This select choir sings a variety of genres and performs across the United States to connect others through music.

California’s all-girls Mountain View High School a capella choir sang to a group of Kamehemeha Maui High School students on Feb. 23 in Mr. Dale Nitta’s classroom.

The select group of students are enrolled in Chorus 1 and/or are members of the Nā Mele Choir and/or Hawaiian Ensemble.

The Mountain View choir consists of only girls from various grade levels and they are enrolled in choir as part of their class schedule. The class meets four days a week. For admittance, this choir requires an audition.

“We’re all the same level. Usually we are very student run…we have a lot of student leaders, and they’re student-elected too,” said Ellen Shaw of the Mountain View choir.

They are taught mostly by peers. Shaw said that peer teaching is “interesting and cool” because it is taught from a peer’s perspective rather than an adult’s.

Choir director Jill Denny said that there are various choirs at Mountain View High School. She said that this choir travels within the nation only, and “when we’re lucky [we can] travel to Hawaiʻi.”

The choir sang three songs of different genres. After that, the KS Maui Chorus 1 class sang one song, followed by the Nā Mele Choir performed and the Hawaiian Ensemble, who sang a couple of songs.

After the performances, the students of Kamehameha Maui, with the help of Kumu Kalei Aarona-Lorenzo, taught the Mountain View choir the doxology Hoʻonani ka Makua Mau. Kumu Kalei began teaching with pronunciation then the alto and soprano parts.

“[The Hawaiian language] is beautiful, and I think itʻs really impressive that they can pick it up really quickly,” Shaw said.

Afterwards, the Mountain View choir taught the KSM students a Zimbabwe song and shared their version of Palehua. 

“They were really good. They had a nice blend,” said Kayla Tuitele, a member of both the Nā Mele Choir and Hawaiian Ensemble.

Afterwards, the KSM students shared their version of Palehua, as well.

“I thought that they were really amazing, and it was really cool to see how other choirs interpret their music… it was really inspiring,” Shaw said.

The Mountain View choir goes by the motto “every voice counts.”

Choir director Jill Denny said, “In choir, you’re only as good as your neighbor, so we try to make everybody successful, and by making every voice count, then we have a better product and community.”