Singing in South Dakota

All three show choir groups perform in their last competition of the year

Riley Kramolisch, Staff Reporter

For their final competition of their 2021-2022 season, all three Millard West Show choir groups — West In the Groove, Uptown Girls and Swing Cats — went to Mitchell, South Dakota, All three groups only had three competitions this season. 

Swing Cats won the Prep division, Uptown Girls won the Treble division and Fan Favorite, qualified for finals (top six overall) and finished 4th place. West in the Groove won the Open division, qualified for Finals (top six overall) and finished Grand Champs. 

West in the Groove (WIG) is the varsity show choir combination of both boys and girls. Their performance theme this year was about loving yourself and acknowledging the fact that everyone is beautiful no matter how broken they may be. West in the Groove Director Zack Bjornsen wanted his group to go out and leave it all on the stage since it was their last performance of the year. 

“WIG definitely embraced the mentality that it was not about winning, it was about pouring their heart and soul into the show and affecting people,” Bjornsen said. “That’s the goal all year long and this group definitely embraced that. We added a couple new wrinkles to the WIG show for this final contest, but mostly we just focused on living in the moment. We spend so much time throughout the year preparing for the comp season, but the season itself is over in an instant.”

Although this was the last competition for the groups this year, many of the show choir members were especially excited for this competition because they got to spend time on a bus getting to know each other and had more time as a group to prepare for this competition.

“I was very excited going into the competition and I was also very sad because it was my last competition as a senior,” senior Aidan Kauth-Fisher said. “My favorite part about the competition was hanging out with my friends and enjoying our last competition with each other.”

Uptown Girls is the all girl show choir group directed by Jordan Newhouse. Their theme for their performance this year was knowing your worth. 

“Each group performed their absolute best at this last competition,” Newhouse said. “We all peaked at the exact right moment. The biggest area of growth for Uptown was their ability to add personality to the choreo and still sing with control and tone.”

Every group had their own mindset and strategy going into this competition and going against different schools that they usually competed against in local competitions. Although show choir doesn’t have many competitions, they practice all year long to be able to perform at their best when it comes time for those competitions.

“I was feeling confident with where we were with our show and really proud of all of the hard work we’d been putting in since August,” junior Taylor Morrison said. “I was also nervous though because we were going into a different state to compete, and I didn’t know what to expect from the judges and other groups.”

Right as their season wrapped up, they had tryouts right around the corner for next season. The previous seniors help the members with their auditions and prep them so they are ready and can compete at their best for the next year.