By Randee Schmitt
Teachers stole the spotlight for one evening, showcasing their many hidden talents in support of Madison Avenue. The Faculty Follies took place on April 8 in the Madison auditorium. As another way to raise money for the Madison Avenue choir to fly to New York to compete at the National Acapella Competition, faculty members took turns performing their various talents, including singing, dancing, and playing instruments.
“Some of the different things we’ve done to help raise money include a benefit concert, selling casseroles and candy, campaigning for money, and having nights at MAARS Pizza and Chick-fil-a where part of the proceeds go to Mad Ave,” Mad Ave member Kora Wallace said. “We also won a contest so we’ll be singing back up for Foreigner and receiving some prize money.”
The evening entailed a piano solo, cowboy poem and trick roping, dancing, multiple duets, and other solo acts. Patricia Takas, an English teacher who sang a Rascal Flatts song as a duet with her daughter, said the best way to prepare for the night was to practice singing in the car.
“[My daughter and I] have a strong bond to Rascal Flatts. We have listened to them ever since she was a toddler, and for her ninth birthday I took her a concert,” Takas said. “It was very emotional. When the song came on I caught myself starting to cry. My daughter is the world to me and to be able to share her passion is something I definitely will add to my “bucket list.” I am blessed to have such a fantastic child, not all moms are that lucky.”
Among the many talents showcased throughout the evening, Elicia Vernon, a social studies teacher, sang Diana Krall’s version of ‘Cry Me a River’. Vernon stated that two performances that particularly stood out to her were Karen Doss’ “incredible piano solo” and Tom Williams’ “remarkable performance” of an original song he sang while playing the guitar and harmonica.
“I’m so proud of our Mad Ave,” Vernon said. “What an opportunity to go to New York to compete, I want to support them however I can. I’ve watched their videos, but at the Faculty Follies was the first time I got to see them live. They’re amazingly talented. They’ve worked so hard for so many hours, and you can tell they’re passionate about what they do. They have a great opportunity to show the rest of America just how talented they are.”