The student news site of Atlantic High School

The Fantastic Five

Meet the five All-Staters from AHS.

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Aaron Rothfusz

How long have you been singing?

“I’ve been singing for about 5 years, and have been taking private voice lessons for 3 years.”

How many times did you make it into allstate?

“This is my second year to be accepted into the All-State Choir.”

How long did you practice preparing for allstate?

“I’ve been practicing and rehearsing since about the beginning of August this year.

How did you feel when you found out you made it into allstate?

“I was overjoyed, and my emotions just went all over the place. I was happy that I made it, but really disappointed that no other choir members made it. To be honest, I was really hoping that Avery Andersen would also make it, since he was in my trio.”

What are your thoughts about singing in the concert on Nov. 19?

“I’m nervous about learning the new piece of music that is given out on the 17th, but am also really excited to see the kids that I met last year, and this year throughout the process. The concert is something that I’m really looking forward to.”

Who inspires or motivates you to do your best?

“There are a number of people in my life who motivate me to do my best. In music, those people are Max Ellwood, Ms. Gaesser, parents, and then my voice instructor, Elsa Casey. As individuals, they each strive for me to do my best, and want be to focus, so I can do everything I put my mind to, and they’re always willing to help when I’m struggling.

 

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Rebekah Hallman

What instrument did you audition with?

I auditioned on the Bb Clarinet.”

How long have you been playing that instrument?

Ever since sixth grade.”

How long did you practice preparing for allstate?

“I attempted to practice everyday, but a lot of my other extracurricular activities got in the way so that wasn’t always possible.”  

How did you feel when you found out you made it into allstate?

Simultaneously emotionally exhausted and uplifted, I felt like I could actually be proud of my abilities and that I didn’t let anyone down.”

What are your thoughts about playing in the concert on Nov. 19?

I’m incredibly excited to be around so many talented students from different schools, and I’m pumped about hearing all of us perform our best.”  

Who inspires or motivates you to do your best?

I know it sounds cheesy, but it’s truly been Mr. O that’s motivated me the most.  He kept pushing for my best and never gave up on my abilities.”

Comment from band director Jarrod O’Donnell;

“Rebekah is finally realizing how talented she is. Her tone is amazing and she now has the confidence she needs to help her in the future.”

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Megan Behrends

What instrument did you audition with?

“Alto Clarinet.”

How long have you been playing that instrument?

“I normally play clarinet, but Mr. O thought I could make All State easily with the alto clarinet, so I have been playing it since the beginning of the school year.”

How long did you practice preparing for allstate?

“I had thought about it this summer but didn’t start practicing until school started.”

How did you feel when you found out you made it into allstate?

“I actually found out from the judge himself right after I auditioned; I was the only alto clarinet that auditioned. I was a little shocked but I knew going in that I was in unless I did terrible in my audition.”

What are your thoughts about playing in the concert on Nov. 19

“I am excited to not only be apart of it, but to just listen to the different aspects, the choir and orchestra.”

Who inspires or motivates you to do your best?

““Mr. O has really helped me get to this point.  He pushes me everyday to not only practice but to be the best I can be and I am very thankful for that.”

Comment from band director Jarrod O’Donnell;

“I’m so happy Megan made it because if there is a dictionary of someone who is super involved, Megan’s picture would be next to it.”

 

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Hannah Richter

What instrument did you audition with?

“Clarinet.”

How long have you been playing that instrument?

“Over seven years.”

How long did you practice preparing for allstate?

“An average of 30-40 minutes per day, and an hour per day the week of auditions.”

How did you feel when you found out you made it into allstate?

“I was surprised and extremely happy.  I thought that the blurbs in my recall audition would have really lowered my chances, but seeing my placement in comparison to the other people recalled really showed that my hard work payed off.”

What are your thoughts about playing in the concert on Nov. 19

“I’m really excited because there are so many amazing musicians from all around the state coming together to perform pieces that we only practice together for three days on.  It’s also a little nerve-wracking for those same reasons.”

Who inspires or motivates you to do your best?

“My motivation came from my audition experience last year.  I was chosen as the first alternate, but I didn’t get to go to the All-State festival.  I really wanted to put even more work into the preparation for this years audition. Knowing how close I was last year, I really wanted to show myself that it was a realistic goal for me and that I could achieve it with hard work and lots of practice.”

Comment from band director Jarrod O’Donnell;

“It’s great she made it because she was first alternate last year and she did a lot of great work this year, so I think she deserved it.”

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Nadia Somers

What instrument did you audition with?

“I auditioned on french horn.”

How long have you been playing that instrument?

“I’ve been playing for seven years.”

How long did you practice preparing for allstate?

“I practiced for two or three months for about an hour a day.”

How did you feel when you found out you made it into allstate?

“I mainly felt relieved and very happy. I was brought in for a recall, but once I was in the room, the judge just said I was in and didn’t have to play for him again. Phew!”

What are your thoughts about playing in the concert on Nov. 19

“I’m so excited! It’s amazing to play in such a large ensemble and know it sounds good even though we only work together for two days.”  

Who inspires or motivates you to do your best?

“All my teachers motivate me and help me improve.”

Comment from band director Jarrod O’Donnell;

“Nadia is just a workhorse towards whatever she puts her mind to.”

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