Burroughs VMA to Celebrate 35 Years With Special Concert

By On August 18, 2013

The John Burroughs High School Vocal Music Association will host a special Alumni “Pop Show” Concert on Saturday, August 24th at 7:00pm and Sunday, August 25th at 2:00pm, in the John Burroughs High School Auditorium.

This year’s event, which has become a biennial tradition, pays tribute to the 35th Anniversary of the JBHS VMA and will feature over 50 VMA alumni performers, including current VMA director Brendan Jennings and artistic director Jen Oundjian.

In addition to a concert, the event will also provide guests with a chance to tour a “museum” of VMA artifacts, including photos, competition costumes, posters and much more from the past three decades.  Attendees will even have an opportunity to take home some of VMA’s coveted trophies as many are retired in order to make room to showcase more recent awards bestowed on the nationally-acclaimed choral program.

Tickets are on sale now at www.JBHSVMA.org and will also be available at the door.  Proceeds from the event will benefit the VMA’s student scholarship offerings.

In 1978, Mary Rago, who at the time was the vocal music director of John Burroughs High School, launched one of the nation’s very first competitive show choir programs. Rago was succeeded as director in 2006 by her former student, Brendan Jennings, who is assisted by artistic director, Jen Oundjian.  Every other August, for the past six years, alumni gather for rehearsals.  The VMA Alumni group supports the Burroughs’ VMA program with donations and fundraising efforts to provide scholarships for current and future student choir members.

The John Burroughs High School Vocal Music Association includes five competitive show choirs, involving over 200 student choir, tech and musical performers.  The program’s advanced mixed choir, POWERHOUSE, has long been recognized as one of the nation’s finest show choirs. An inspiration for the television series “Glee,” POWERHOUSE was invited to perform on the Oprah Winfrey Show in 2010 as a representative of the modern high school show choir phenomenon. In recent years, POWERHOUSE has performed opposite the cast of “Glee,” Christina Aguilera, Nelly Furtado, The Canadian Tenors and Foreigner. Additionally, the group was featured in “Gleeful: The Real Show Choirs of America”, a British documentary as well as profiled on the “CBS Evening News.” The choir has traveled and performed in a variety of cities around the U.S., and has twice traveled to Hong Kong to perform in the internationally televised Chinese New Year Parade as other prominent events.

In addition to being named the 2013 National Champions, POWERHOUSE has accumulated countless awards and accolades on both the local and national levels, including Grand Championships at the FAME Hollywood Show Choir Regional Competition; the 2009 FAME National Show Choir Cup in New York, the 2008 FAME Chicago National Show Choir Competition and the 2007 FAME Orlando National Show Choir Competition.

For more information on the John Burroughs High School VMA Show Choirs, go to www.jbhsvma.org