Music, Melody, and More: A Review of Hanover’s Got Talent

For those of you who came to the 5th Annual Hanover’s Got Talent Show – thank you! If you couldn’t, there’s no need to worry; I’ve got you covered.

The show opened with Justin Zhou (Class of 2020) performing a stunningly beautiful cello piece, “Cello Concerto in B Minor, 1 st Movement,” by Antonin Dvoiak, completely from memory. His fingers flew over the strings with such grace and precision that even Ms. Stevenson’s young son admitted that it was “very cool.”

After Justin, Toj (Class of 2021) gave a thrilling rendition of “I’m Still Standing,” by Elton John. Justin was an extremely tough act to follow, but Toj’s bouncing energy and confidence made him stand out. Next, Sophia Nadeau sang “Can’t Help Falling in Love,” accompanied on piano by Alice Garner (both sophomores). Sophia has a gorgeous tone to her voice, and her low notes are stunning. Alice followed beautifully. All in all, it was a very pleasant performance.

Tahquiy Smith, X Hankel, and Clayton Pogue’s band (all Class of 2018) performed “Stray Cat Strut,” by the Stray Cats, with drums, a bass, a guitar, and vocals. The song seemed well rehearsed, and everyone seemed at ease of stage, making the overall experience very relaxing for the audience (except for the one dog in the theater: he was very interested in the cat part of the song).

Alex Margotta (Class of 2018) sang an original song called “Let Me Be the One,” while accompanying himself on the guitar. The song itself was very well formatted, and Alex’s guitar playing was quite nice. Sadly, the mic was not high enough up, so the audience could not hear some of the lyrics. Overall, Alex’s bravery in performing an original song was very impressive, and his voice went very well with the song.

After Alex, Celeste Farrell (Class of 2020,) Johan Berendson, and Gunnar Langhus (both Class of 2021) played improv games and performed improv skits with the help of the audience. While the audience participation aspect was fun, the whole performance went on for a bit too long. However, it was enjoyable to watch, and there were definitely some very funny moments in the skits.

Stephen Wang (Class of 2020) came next, playing “Beethoven’s Waldstein Sonata in C Major” like some sort of Piano Fairy and blowing the entire audience away. His mastery of the instrument was evident in his ability to shift the tone of the piece in a second, and the calmness with which he performed. Stephen looked so at ease throughout his extremely challenging 10 minute piece that it was extremely easy to imagine him playing at Carnegie Hall (which, by the way, he has done.) In the end, his performance left me wondering why the rest of us even try, but in the best way possible.

Kate Gasparro (Class of 2021) sang “Stay With Me,” by Sam Smith, with the pure voice of an angel, while also accompanying herself on the ukulele. Kate’s range was jaw-dropping, and her high notes were clear and sweet. As the judges noted, she seemed a little bit nervous. For what reason, I have no idea, as her performance was beautiful.

Iva Wich (Class of 2018) came next, singing an original song called “Waiting For You To Wake Up,” and accompanying herself on the guitar. Iva’s voice is mature, soulful, and very powerful, and her song was beautiful. Her range is astounding, and she her command of the stage was incredible. My guess is that no one in the audience, myself included, would be surprised if she goes on to win a Grammy (or two).

Gunnar Langhus (Class of 2021) took the stage once more, but this time to sing instead of do improv. Gunnar sang “Waving Through a Window,” a song from the musical Dear Evan Hanson. He delivered a lovely performance, despite some technical difficulties. Gunnar did very well, especially considering that “Waving Through a Window” is a very difficult song to sing, and requires some very high falsetto.

Last, but certainly not least, Kylie Zubkoff (Class of 2019) sang an original song, accompanying herself on guitar. Kylie wrote the song in 5th period, and was a last minute addition to the lineup. However, if Kylie was at all nervous, I couldn’t tell. Her song was very powerful, and she seemed at home on the stage. Her performance was very compelling, and it was a very moving way to end the night.

In the end, the judges had to make a very difficult decision. After much deliberation, the results were as follows: Iva Wich and Justin Zhou tied for 3rd place, Sophia Nadeau won 2nd, and Stephen Wang, to no one’s surprise, won 1st place. For Winter Carnival, this brought the seniors’ total points to 475, the juniors’ to 220, the sophomores’ 825, the freshmen’s to 325, and the staff ’s to 255. Congratulations to everyone who performed, and great job to the sophomores, who are now in the lead!

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