‘Tis the season for South High’s singers in Great Neck

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South High School's performers take a quick break for a photo at the Inn at Great Neck's annual tree lighting party. (Photo by Russell Lippai)
South High School's performers take a quick break for a photo at the Inn at Great Neck's annual tree lighting party. (Photo by Russell Lippai)

For Great Neck South High School’s choral singers, it is the busiest time of the year, with winter concerts, performances in the district and invitations to perform elsewhere – not to mention exams.

But one thing they’ve always made time for?

Ushering in the holidays at the Inn at Great Neck during the annual tree lighting party.

“We had all of the high school years represented,” Janine Robinson, the vocal music director of Great Neck South High School, said in an interview. “It’s a very busy time of year for the students … but they love this tradition.”

At this year’s Christmas tree lighting party at the inn on Monday, the students helped entertain a crowd of more than 50 people both out in the cold and inside. They sang several holiday classics, like “Oh Hanukkah,” “All I Want For Christmas Is You,” “Frosty the Snowman,” and a dozen other songs.

The party has been a tradition for more than 15 years, principal manager Alan Mindel said last year, with a goal of spreading holiday cheer and bringing the community together.

“I think it shows how cohesive the Great Neck community is,” Robinson said of this year’s attendance. “It shows that the community really sticks together and appreciates what’s going on in our schools.”

Students, dignitaries and other guests pose in front of the Inn at Great Neck's Christmas tree. (Photo by Russell Lippai)
Students, dignitaries and other guests pose in front of the Inn at Great Neck’s Christmas tree. (Photo by Russell Lippai)

General manager Nicholas Horn, who dresses up as Santa Claus each year for the event, said this year was the biggest turnout he could remember.

Among the visitors were Assemblyman Anthony D’Urso, Town Supervisor Judi Bosworth, Great Neck Plaza Mayor Jean Celender, new U.S. Merchant Marine Academy Superintendent Jack Buono and dozens of residents.

“They’re the first call we make,” Horn said of South High’s singers. “They’re great. The kids are wonderful singers.”

And, according to Robinson, it’s a call the students will continue to answer.

“The students love to share their music with the community,” Robinson said. “It brings joy to both the community and the singers themselves.”

“We look forward to inviting incoming students to continue this great tradition,” she added.

The performers included Aalia Syed, Angelina Fazzini, Sophia Wotman, Sunjae Lee, Robert Zheng, Ashley Yu, Talia Katz and Danielle Drucker.

The chorus’s next concerts will be on Thursday, Dec. 6, at 7:30 p.m. and Thursday, Dec. 13, at 7:30 p.m. – both at South High School and free of charge.

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