OTTUMWA— A group of 35 middle school students with a passion for music and dance are preparing for the sixth season of Rising Stars’ performances. Their first performance this year will be Monday, January 30 at the annual Sweets & Sounds event at the OHS Auditorium.
The activity is open to any middle school student who is currently in choir. “This opportunity preps them for a similar process in high school,” said Pam De Boer, director. Students rehearse twice a week on the Evans’ stage.
The fist performance includes two numbers, “Set It Off” and “True Colors.” Parents will remember the later as a Cindy Lauper tune but it is also more recently featured in “Trolls.” Additional songs will be added to their repertoire prior to the final performance this spring during the Pops concert.
Fund raising last year resulted in costumes. Girls will wear red glitter dresses and boys will use gray suits handed down from the OHS Meistersingers.
The middle school show choir “preps them for what they can do in high school,” said De Boer. As the program continues to grow and expand, she hopes to begin taking students to competitions. “Each year I try to raise the bar,” she said.
Two eighth graders are following a relative’s footsteps. Kilye Hucks has a cousin in the OHS show choir. She is Hucks’ inspiration. “I like the aspect of performing and performing with all your friends is fun to do,” she said.
Josie Young’s older sister was also in show choir. “She really enjoyed it and said I should do it,” she said. “And it’s fun to be involved in meeting people.”