North Star News

Niles North High School | Skokie, IL

North Star News

Niles North High School | Skokie, IL

North Star News

Dance Marathon’s V-Show declares musical winners Chan, Garcia & Sotelo

Thea Gabrielle Abang
Poster promoting Dance Marathon’s Variety Show and displaying its acts and performers

The NN Variety Show was performed on Nov. 10 putting on a spectacular hour of musical talent and skill from pianos, to guitars, to jazz, and even ukulele music; this showcase seemed to be dominated by music. Two acts were declared the winners: sophomore Chan playing a Beethoven piece on piano and the acoustic guitar duo of brothers Eduardo Garcia & Israel Sotelo playing a traditional Mexican song. These winners won the opportunity to play for the Winter Assembly on Dec. 8 for their outstanding performances.

Graphic displaying structure of the V-Show

“I just transferred here from Evanston and this was my first talent show,” Garcia said. “Before the performance, I felt excited and hopeful that we would do a good job and that the audience would like it. We also were hoping that a lot of people of our heritage and cultural background would be here. Me and my brother, we’re trying to represent the Hispanic community by performing music from our culture. While we were performing, it looked like everyone was entertained by our performance. Micah’s performance was one of the best ones, it looked like he really pulled in a lot of effort and he was really passionate about what he was doing. I’m happy that he did win; when they announced that both of us won and it was a tie, I was happy with that. They ended up giving us a trophy. I had a fun time performing and showing the people our talent.”

This year’s V-Show proved difficult to judge, and though mainly musical, the judges faced a tough choice between Chan’s classical solo act and the brotherly, acoustic, Mexican double act from Garcia and Sotelo. So, both were chosen as winners.

“Micah performed amazingly,” DM sponsor and V-Show judge Jay Cha said. “His routine was clearly rehearsed, it was very evident he put in a lot of hard work and preparation. Playing a piece by Beethoven in itself is a hard act. But he did a really tremendous job and it was a marvelous performance by him. Micah was one of the winners because the judges were torn; it’s difficult to evaluate, judge, and assess individual acts versus group acts. The brothers performed beautifully as a duo. They stood out, there was a very beautiful representation up there, and it was just very entertaining. It was something unique we haven’t seen before and I think that was to be commended, honored, and recognized. It’s so great to have families and friends support our Niles North students and it’s always a joy to see the students outside of the classroom setting as a teacher and see them shine. It’s always a special time when we get to see that passion and talent displayed like that.”

The V-Show proved to be a fun time for everyone, not just the winners. Audience members and other performers also had fun being involved with the performers believing that the winners’ victories were well deserved.

Poster encouraging participation in the V-Show
(Saima Ashrafi, Thea Gabrielle Abang)

“There was a solid amount of people; not too much, not too little,” V-Show performer Ben Buhay said. “Everyone was clapping, they liked all the acts, even if the performers made a mistake or two. I was excited to perform, I thought people would like it because [our cover of “How Deep is Your Love” by The Bee Gees] is a chill, groovy version of the song and we’re just good musicians. So, it’s just nice to show off our talent. Of course, we kind of wanted to win, but Micah was really talented so I think he deserved [the victory]. And then the guitar duo, I get why they won; they brought the most energy out of everyone and they played really good. It was really nice to see that [Mexican] culture on display from the duo.”

This V-Show highlighted the wonderful musical talents of Niles North this year and uniquely gave the win to two different performances, one classical and one traditional. Judges and sponsors hope to garner even more participation and support next year for another well done hour of talent and skill, planning to promote the show earlier in 2024. Considering the superb acts seen this year, the next year shows great promise.

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About the Contributor
James R Prizant, Asst. People Editor
James "Jimmy" Ryan Prizant is a junior at Niles North. In his free time he enjoys bowling, scrolling and chatting through socials, and listening to 80s music on Spotify. He one day hopes to have a job relating to mental health, writing, or bowling.

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