As senior Kimmy Woodworth walks on the stage prepared to perform an opera song, three judges scribble and record in their notepads.
Woodworth has been singing with the school choir since the seventh grade, but she said she has always had a passion for music, singing and drama. Woodworth has been in three high school plays and the Wizard of Oz in the Columbian Theater in Wamego.
“Singing was always a big part of my family, like you had to sing, but I have been in choir since the seventh grade,” Woodworth said
Although Woodworth has been in choir since the seventh grade and been to several singing competitions, she has only been singing opera for three years.
“It’s more fun than singing pop music or just singing in English,” Woodworth said. “Singing in Italian is just so much fun.”
In the three years that Woodworth has been singing opera, choir director Todd Walters has been coaching her, working with her outside of choir, mostly on competition pieces for league, regionals and state.
“The first time I told Mr Walters that I wanted to go to contest, I needed an English folk song and a foreign language song, and I pulled out an Italian opera piece,” Woodworth said.
In her competitions, Woodworth has received I ratings at league and II ratings at regionals, but this year, she hopes to go further.
The ratings in the competitions are what the judges use to evaluate the contestant’s abilities. To receive a I, the contestant must know the music to the best of her ability, Receiving a II means that the contestant needs to work on the pieces, but overall, the pieces was not bad. Receiving a III means that there is much room to improve on the music.
When going to contest for a solo, it is required to have an English piece and a foreign language piece. During Woodworth’s contests, she has made it a tradition to always choose an English folk song and a Italian opera piece.
“Opera is a lot easier than English,” Woodworth said. “You have to sound more proper and Italian, so you can just let it go.”
Article by Patty Frady, newspaper photo/video editor
Photo by Kitrina Miller, newspaper copy editor