Carl Gilchrist, Gleaner Writer
ST ANN'S BAY, St Ann:FINALLY, THERE is something at Marcus Garvey Technical High School to smile about!
Persons in St Ann's Bay and other communities in St Ann have become familiar with the school's band over the years as it has been performing at functions.
But no one, it appears, was ready for the success that the school's choir has been enjoying in this year's edition of Television Jamaica's (TVJ's) singing competition, All Together Sing.
Last Sunday's televised performance saw the choir receiving positive reviews from the judges for its rendition of a Swahili song.
In St Ann's Bay on Tuesday, the group, along with music teacher Diamara Neil-Walker and several teachers, staged a concert to drum up support to gain votes and funds. The crowd response was quite appreciative of the 28-member choir and five-piece band.
Neil-Walker, who is in charge of the choir, said the performance of the team has uplifted the school community.
"Everybody is motivated and excited and wants to see the school go further," she said.
It is not the first time that Marcus Garvey Technical has entered the competition, but it is the first time the school has progressed so far.
"I think what is different this time around is that we are getting a better idea of what is required and trying to motivate students not just to sing, but to sing together as a choir."
And so far, she is satisfied with what has transpired.
"We are pretty satisfied with what has happened so far, and what we realise is that because of the good showing on TVJ, most students are now interested in the choir," Neil-Walker said.
Latoya Chambers, a teacher who was on hand to help garner support for the choir, said she has seen where the choir's performance has created a positive impact on the school body.
"I have seen where the self-esteem of students has been lifted, and consequently, there is a boost in the morale of the school," Chambers pointed out.
She is not surprised at the success of the choir, and even the band, over the years as the school is blessed with talented students.
"We have very talented youngsters with real talent, and there are many left to be discovered. If they continue as they are doing now, I really do expect them to do great things," said Chambers.
When Rural Xpress caught up with principal, Leslie Riley, the following day, he echoed the sentiments of the two teachers.
"Everybody is feeling positive about it and it is really a good thing to have a choir that is well received," Riley stated.