On Religion, The Media and Life as a 20-something in Chicago

http://couriernews.suntimes.com/video/article/index.html?pid=gOQbw_EJ3SunFMoG2dyuq3mCYTEOSW0S Jamie Christian knew when she got to high school that she wanted to join the show choir. Waubonsie Valley High School’s group, Sound Check, had performed at her middle school, and she remembers it vividly. “We sat down during class to watch them, and everyone was in awe …,” she said. “That was the biggest thing I wanted to do. There was no question.” Now 17 and a senior at Waubonsie Valley, the Auroran has been part of the show choir since she was a freshman. And these days, it’s not just the occasional middle schooler who is in awe of the 52-member group. There also are the film crews from across the country that have come calling in the past year or so, the TV news appearances, the October cover story in Parade magazine. “That’s the ‘Glee’ effect,” choral director Mark Myers said. “We’ve had a lot more calls about TV shows. People want us to do documentaries, reality TV shows. It’s more in the public eye — that’s for sure.” That’s the effect prep music programs across northern Illinois have reported since the popular TV show “Glee” — a musical comedy about a high school show choir — premiered in 2009 on Fox, and the music from its sound track hit the top of the charts. The pop culture phenomenon has earned 19 Emmys and 11 Golden Globe nominations, two Grammy Award nominations and two Platinum and two Gold albums. It even beat out The Beatles for the most songs on the Billboard Hot 100 by a non-solo act, according to the show’s Web page on Fox.com. Area music programs range from the award-winning show choir at Waubonsie Valley to Elgin School District U46’s hardworking Visual and Performing Arts Academy, at Larkin High School in Elgin, which draws students studying music in depth. And the “Glee” effect on them has produced everything from mild annoyance to spikes in auditions to the launch of Naperville Central High School’s first glee club. For the rest of the story, a photo gallery and audio slideshow, visit The Courier-News.

In Uncategorized on March 14, 2011 at 3:11 pm

Storyteller: Hit show impacts high school music groups (Sun-Times Media)

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