Senior SING! Takes Home Victory

Youssef Abourageh ’19 and Olivia Zheleznyak ’19 recreate “Beauty and the Beast” during Senior SING!  Photo Credit: Justin Chow

Youssef Abourageh ’19 and Olivia Zheleznyak ’19 recreate “Beauty and the Beast” during Senior SING! Photo Credit: Justin Chow


Philippe the dinosaur was a hit during SoFresh’s “The Journey to Julliard.”  Photo Credit: Justin Chow

Philippe the dinosaur was a hit during SoFresh’s “The Journey to Julliard.” Photo Credit: Justin Chow

By NADIAH SHOHATEE, MARIANA VARGAS, VICTOR ZHENG, and ALLEN SZETO

As Mayor Tanisa Rahman ’20 prepared to announce this year’s SING! winners, the anxious tension of the room began to climb, and the racket of the auditorium dampened into silence. 

The results were announced: Winning by a mere 34 points, Senior SING! took home the victory February 9 over the juniors. 

The seniors received a total of 3,441 points out of a possible 4,200 from the 21 judges over two days. The juniors received 3,407 points, and SoFresh came third with 2,567. 

Dr. Ernest Pysher said the scores were “the closest that I can remember.” 

In the category awards, the juniors were awarded Best Dance, Best Acting, and tied with the Seniors for Best Band. The Seniors, on the other hand, won Best Art and Tech, Best Writing, and Best Song.

“I was definitely excited and nervous for the show to start,” said Gabriella Shalumov ’20, one of the Junior SING! Commissioners. “I knew that the cast and crew would do a great job.” 

SING! began in 1947 when one of Midwood’s former music teachers, Ms. Bella Tillis, offered the idea of student-based theater productions competing against each other. The idea soon began to spread among other Brooklyn high schools like Madison, Goldstein, and Murrow.

This years show started off with SoFresh’s story, “The Journey to Julliard,” a sentimental tale about high school students working their way to the Julliard School. 

“I liked the messages it had,” said Liana, a student outside of Midwood who came to support her friends. “Especially the poem about racism.”

“The play got better after a while; they really eased into it,” said Shabariz Malik ’20, one of the writers for Junior SING! “My favorite part was the dinosaur, Philippe!” 

The juniors came out with a lighthearted performance entitled “On The Flipside,” where a chef and a fashion designer switch lives.

“I think it was amazing,” said Lorraine Hallett ’20, one of the lead actresses. “I’m so proud of everyone. We gave it our all and had lots of fun. I couldn’t have asked for anything better.”

Jonathan Li ’20 said, “The dynamic this year is that we’re much more connected. Last year we would stay with our respective groups. This year, everyone was so open to talking to each other.”

Zyhra Casero ’20 said that the actors had more freedom this year. “We were encouraged to improvise and write songs that match our characters,” she said. “Before, we had to stick to a script and do what we were told. This year, everyone worked more independently.” 

The seniors topped off the evening with a production based on a combination of different fairy tales, “After Ever After.” The main character, Grimm, encounters a strange man who gives him a book filled with every known fairy tale. Soon afterward, his girlfriend Rose goes missing. As Grimm searches for Rose, he meets other people who have lost their own significant others, and they jump from fairy tale to fairy tale trying to solve the mystery.

“I think our show went really well and we managed to tie all the parts together smoothly,” said Youssef Abourageh ’19, one of the actors on Senior SING!

As for the juniors, they’re already looking forward to next year.

“We’ll definitely be able to learn more collectively,” said Brian Too ’20. “Part of the reason seniors win so much is because they have experience. Even though we lost, that bittersweet taste makes us determined to do better, to bring more to the show than just acting, dancing, and singing. I’ll always love SING! because it gives us space to improve, and I know we will.”

NewsCasey Levinson