New Chorus Teacher Starts The Year On The Right Note

Mrs. Oliver is excited to lead the Chorus program this year.

Chloe Renaud

Mrs. Oliver is excited to lead the Chorus program this year.

Chloe Renaud, Staff Reporter

Samantha Grunden
This September, students in chorus performed at all three lunches.

As the students come pouring into the school everyday, teachers start just the same. A prime example of a teacher, excited and eager to get into the swing of things, is Mandy Oliver. Ms. Oliver is West Side’s new chorus and piano teacher, and she’s thrilled to start the year off the right way.

Ms.Oliver comes to us with an extensive list of experience. She graduated from Berklee College of Music in 2004 and is about to receive her masters degree in Songwriting from Bath Spa University located in England. She previously taught at Pioneer Regional Valley, and directed ensembles, or groups of performers, in Berkshire County. She’s also worked with Mr. Holesovsky for 10 years before he came to us.  She’s been teaching for 15 years and is thrilled to be a part of the West Side community. 

“I am so impressed with the level of respect that I have been given,” said Ms.Oliver. She is determined to make this year as great as she can for every student that has the opportunity to work with her. Part of her plan to make the year as amazing as possible is by putting together a trip to go see The Lion King on Broadway. In preparation for this she would like to have chorus perform a song from the show during lunch. 

Her ambitious nature and passion for music have led to many accomplishments. Previous students of hers have gone on to audition for American Idol, the television show. One of her former students is currently in the interviewing process. Unfortunately she was unable to give any more information. 

When seeking a new chorus teacher, the school allowed Sara LaFrance to interview the teachers. Sara was chosen because of her frequent, and commonly described as beautiful singing of the National Anthem at sporting events, and also her involvement in the music programs at this school. Sara LaFrance said Ms. Oliver had a“bubbly” personality and brought something new to the table. Sara was also impressed more recently by her talent as she works with her this year. 

She has gone above and beyond for this program already, and her abilities as a talented choir director have shown these past few weeks,” said LaFrance. Both first-year and returning chorus students shared similar experiences with Ms.Oliver and describe her class as a caring and kind environment. 

“My first year in chorus has been great! Great people and good experiences,” said junior Anthony Tatro. Gillian Gray, who is also the chorus captain, shares Ms.Oliver’s hopes to continue the music programs growth. “I hope that Ms.Oliver will help the chorus members become more of a family and help every student find their vocal range and show them how to expand it,” she said.