The Kapa‘a Middle School Choir, under the direction of Mary Lardizabal, earned the Gold award April 14 and 15 in the Heritage Music Festival on O‘ahu.
The 37 performers earned the award for receiving a score between 90 points and 100 points.
The Spirit of Hawai‘i award was also given to the Kapa‘a Middle School choir for representing their school and community the best.
There were 15 other choirs and orchestras participating in the nationwide festival.
“It was a delayed reaction,” said Lardizabal, in a press release. “After hearing that we had received the Gold, I was in shock for the remainder of the evening. The competition, this year, was unbelievable. Our students were so amazing. They were very humbled and honored by their achievements. I couldn’t have hand-picked a better group of students. Each day, I count my blessings that I am able to teach these children to share their gift of music.”
Chaperones for the trip were Nancy Kojima, Mary Ke Allard, Sheri Thronas, Patrica and Harry Yamamoto, Candace Nadarisay, Nancy Wilson. Cheering in the audience were Monica Kunioka, and members of Tiare Saflor’s family.
“We work very hard from the beginning of the year to raise money and prepare for this festival,” Lardizabal said in the release.
The effort began with the Kauai United Way Walk-a-thon, a silent auction at the school’s Winter Choral Concert, and numerous community performances during the holidays. “The Kapa‘a Middle School PTSA is to be thanked for their generous donations as well,” Lardizabal said.
This was Kapa‘a Middle School‘s sixth year of participation in the Heritage Music Festival, and Lardizabal said she hopes to continue to provide this opportunity to her students each year.
Students who participated in the Heritage Music Festival were: Dana Kojima, Tanya Boyer, Brittney Mizumoto-Thronas, Raylene Rivera-Alesna, Mahina Kolo, Brandi Yamamoto, Toni Nadarisay, Nicole Carvalho, Melea Value, Michaelle Jae Cruz, Christina Pico, Ethelyn Calvan, Kristel Guino, Tatiana Dykhouse, Kaira Kupihea, Brienne Saiki, Chanel Soriano, Brendan Jacinto, Herbert Semana, Kody White, Kaina Allard, Christy Daligdig, Lynelle Villanueva, Addy Udani, Tiare Saflor, Christen Wilson, Takara Kunioka, Abby Iglesia, Marissa Iglesia, Kanani Lizama, Alyssa Balisican, Larisa Jensen, Natasha Machado, Chelsea Pigao, Melanie Cardenas, Cole Tanioka, and Charles Kong.
The Kapa‘a Middle School Choirs will continue to practice and prepare for their upcoming Sping Concert scheduled for May 9 at 7 p.m. at the school‘s covered court. The concert is open to the public and there is no admission charge.
For more information, call Lardizabal at 821-4470, ext 136.