Singing their way to All State


Joanne Quach, Editor-in-Chief

Recently two talented choir students, Alexander Nguyen, 12, and Misael Bolanos, 12, had the chance to participate in All State Honor Choir.

All State Honor Choir is an opportunity for the finest high school singers from all around California to sing in select choirs under extremely well known conductors.

After auditioning in September, the two were first accepted into Regionals Honors Choir, along with Rocky La, 11, Steven Lepe, 12, and Jonathan Cruz, 12. The audition consists of singing a solo, sight reading music, tonal memory and range checking.

Since California is such a large state, Regionals Honor Choir is divided into 3 regions: Coastal, Central and Southern. Arroyo High School is part of the Southern Honor Choir. Each region has a Men’s Choir, Women’s Choir and a Mixed Choir with about 90 students in each. Alexander Nguyen was part of the Mixed Choir, while Misael Bolanos was part of the Men’s Choir.

Students who auditioned for Regionals in September were given a score at the end of their audition, the score that is given to them is used to determine whether or not they qualify for All State. If the student has indicated that they would like to be considered for All State and have achieved a score high enough, they will be eligible.

Alexander and Misael both were able to qualify for All State Honor Choir.

“The feeling of getting into regionals for the second time was amazing, knowing what was yet to come, having already gone the year before and knowing that I would be going with three of my friends for a second time and with another friend that was going for his first time. Getting into all-state was an even more amazing feeling because it showed to me that I’m actually good at what I am doing and that making it in the first time wasn’t just luck. It felt awesome to be considered as one of California’s elite singers,” said Nguyen.

Their choir director, Jennifer Stanley could not be more proud of the two singers.

“I am extremely proud of them. They both worked very very hard. Alex and Misael were very consistent and very dedicated in both music and their other classes. It’s a very difficult audition, it’s the best students of the state so I’m just really proud of how hard they worked and how responsible and dedicated they were,” states Ms. Stanley.

Some time in December they were given their music for the concert, which they had to learn themselves. The two were only left to use the knowledge and skills they had gained through their choir class. 

Once Nguyen and Bolanos felt confident in their music, they traveled up to Northern California where they met up with other qualifying choir students at San Jose University. There they were first tested on their pieces to check whether or not they prepared. After passing the test, the singers then spent a great deal of hours fixing any errors they had and learning how to improve their quality of singing.

“My overall experience at All State— honestly it was a really good experience. I met so many new and talented people. I tried to do my best but I’m not that good at doing my best, so when I’m meeting all these talented people I’m just like ‘dude all these people are so cool’. You learn so much from being in a diverse group from like NorCal, Bakersfield and down where we are. You get a sense of how California is and how talented we are as a state. It’s was a good learning experience and I was glad to be a part of it,” said Bolanos.

The concert was held on Saturday, February 17, 2018 at St. Joseph’s Cathedral Basilica.