By Mark Ambrogi
The Carmel High School show choirs are traditionally strong in competition.
However to compete at a high level, funds are needed. The Ambassadors and Accents Cabaret at 2 p.m. on Oct. 25 at Carmel High School is the largest fundraiser of the year.
“It provides the majority of our funds for all of the competition costs that we will face when the show choirs go out to compete,” said Kathleen Kouns, director of choirs. “We are able to offset the cost a little bit by asking the students to pay some of the fees but honestly we only ask the students to pay 25 or 30 percent of what it actually costs to make those trips happen.”
Kouns said the costs start with the costuming and the props.
“Nowadays with copyrights, it costs us almost $10,000 just to get the rights to the arrangements we do,” Kouns said. “In addition, we bring in some of the best choreographers from around the country and they get a chance to work with the Carmel students. Therefore our students are learning from the highest quality educators out there.”
Then there is the cost of travel, meals and hotels.
“Even though we live here in Carmel and we’re fortunate to have a lot of our families that don’t struggle financially,” Kouns said. “It’s still a lot to ask of individual families to cover all that cost.”
In addition, Kouns said the Cabaret gives the choirs a chance to showcase their talents for the community.
“There will be group numbers performed by both ensembles,” Kouns said. “There will be individual solos and small group numbers. One of the interesting things is we’ve called this year’s show the Royal Ball and everything is centered around the idea of royalty.
So there will be songs by the King of Rock and Roll (Elvis Presley) and the Queen of Soul (Aretha Franklin), King of Pop (Michael Jackson) and Queen of Country (Dolly Parton).
“There will be literal songs about kings and queens and princesses but also songs by incredible artists who are considered to be royalty in the music industry,” Kouns said.
There will be refreshments and a silent auction. Among the auction items are choir members singing Christmas carols. Tickets are available at ticketracker.com for $25.