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The Current

Facing The Music: Seniors Sign Off

Matthew Moule is one of the seniors whom the music program is bidding farewell to. Photo by Mike DeCicco

Seniors Janine McCluskey, Matthew Moule and Shannon Rodriguez all performed one last time during the Spring Concert on May 12. McCluskey, Moule and Rodriguez are all in the music program at Bear River and share their love of music with others. 

Last year, David Ahrens retired from being the music director and Paul Everts stepped up and took over the music program. Moule had Ahrens for three years, so switching to Everts was a big change.

“(It was) a little weird with transitioning music teachers, but overall it ended up being a good year,” he said.

Moule has been in the band for nine years and joined the choir for his senior year. 

“I did better than expected at it,” he explained. “I think it was a good thing that just happened to me because I didn’t intentionally sign up for it. It just got put into my schedule.“

Rodriguez was also signed up for choir as a backup but loved being in the class.

“The kids are really nice and it wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be,” she said. “I mostly just kinda went in it because I didn’t know what else I was going to do.”

While it was both Moule’s and Rodriguez’s first time in choir, McCluskey has spent the majority of her life in choir.

“I’ve been in Bear River Choir for four years, but I’ve been doing choir my whole life,” she said.

McCluskey has performed in many different types of choir in the course of her life.

“I was in show choir when I was like 5,” she said. “I was in Starlite the last three years.”

Starlite was a performance choir where performers sang and danced while a band backed them up. Sadly, this program was let go since there were not enough people interested. While some people have been leaving the music program, Moule has found a safe space in the program.

“It gave me a place where I knew everybody and everybody kind of knew me,” he said. “We could all get along for the most part, even whenever drama things happened. We all had a safe place to go throughout the day.”

Moule has had a love of music that drove him to center his senior project around music. 

“My senior project was writing an original piece to have played by the Bear River Symphonic Band,” he said.

Moule is interested in pursuing a career in music, so this project was a fun one.

“It was pretty cool,” he said. “I think I would have perfected it more if I had more time, but just because of time constraints, I was pretty proud of how far it got.”

With senior projects, the students do most of the work and Moule said he still got some outside help.

“It was mostly me,” he explained. “I did get some suggestions from Mr. Everts and friends, but for the most part it was what I could figure out for myself.”

Music has made an impact on a lot of people’s lives. McCluskey has used music to bring her out of dark places.

“(Music) has saved my life,” she said.

McCluskey performed a solo piece in the last band concert of the school year. She dedicated this piece to multiple people who have helped her in her life.

“I sang that for my dad and Malachai (Coleman, a Bear River student who died last year), kind of as like a tribute because they saved me in the same way that music did. Malachai came into my life and saved me like choir did.”

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About the Contributor
Olivia Herr
Olivia Herr, Executive Editor
Olivia Herr is the Executive Editor for the BRCurrent and has been in Online Multimedia for two years. She is active within the Bear River Community by playing soccer and tennis, while also being a part of the band and technical theater program. Her main goal for senior year is to make an impact on the community and plans to do this through reporting stories.
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Facing The Music: Seniors Sign Off