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Singers spread La La Love on Valentine’s Day

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Singers spread La La Love on Valentine’s Day

Robin Handley

Robin Handley

Robin Handley

Anya Herzberg, Harper Dunn

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Sitting in your fifth period, you’re counting down the seconds until class ends. All of a sudden, your boredom is temporarily alleviated as the door opens and you see a choir student peer into the classroom. Seconds later, you are smiling, happy, and full of love, bobbing your head to the joyful song being sung. It’s a La La Love Gram!

Everyone adores them, but do you know what happens behind the scenes? We followed Zach Rakotomaniraka, a freshman choir student, around during the week to get the inside scoop.

For his La La Love Gram, Rakotomaniraka chose the song “Beautiful” by Bazzi. “It’s on the modern side of the time spectrum and I think it has straightforward lyrics to get straight to the point,” Rakotomaniraka said. We agreed, both thinking that it was a great choice because of how well known the melody is at Wilson. Rakotomaniraka has been singing since he was seven and has performed in many musicals; last fall he played one of the lead roles in Wilson’s production of “Rent.”

One week before:

Rakotomaniraka started thinking about his song long before this, but he began practicing his song daily the week before the big day. “I spent ten minutes each day in my room listening and memorizing song lyrics.” At this point, he was just trying to get the feel of the song. He also began to think of the ways he could put his own spin on the song to make it his own.

Two days before:

He now began to think more about his song and performance as Valentine’s Day neared. “I would catch myself singing in the shower, or while I’m doing homework or even in school when nobody is there to hear.” Rakotomaniraka prepared himself in every way possible, including training his voice and practicing his song. He sang riffs and trained his vocal chords, usually in his room or around the house.

The Big Day:

We met Rakotomaniraka in the choir room, where he received his assigned La La Love Grams, and then headed toward his first La La Love Gram of seventh period, a Pre-AP French class. As he entered Madame Palmer’s classroom, he surprised everyone with his fluent French, headed to the front of the classroom and sang. His angelic voice amazed everyone in the room, and the class immediately began to snap along to the song. Of course, the La La Love Gram recipient blushed, but was laughing and smiling. As Rakotomaniraka left the room for a new La La Love Gram, everyone clapped.

Everyone who heard was blown away by such an incredible performance from a freshman. We joined him throughout the next few of his performances, and in each one, Rakotomaniraka was able to light up the room with his voice. After each performance, students and teachers burst into applause.

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Singers spread La La Love on Valentine’s Day