by Nancy Vondrak
The start of a new school year is synonymous with new experiences. For Nordonia Schools’ a cappella choirs, this fall marks the debut of their latest album “Aftershock.”
This 14-track recording features all five of Nordonia’s a cappella groups, which encompass students from grades five through 12. “Genesis” showcases fifth and sixth grade singers at Lee Eaton Intermediate School. “Knight Rhythm” features seventh and eighth graders from Nordonia Middle School, and both the “Momentum” and “Synergy” groups spotlight Nordonia High School singers.
According to Nordonia Choral Director and Music Coordinator John Pickering, “Aftershock” is the fifth album that Nordonia’s various a cappella groups have recorded over the years. He described the album as “a byproduct of the students’ work throughout the school year” and said it is based on music performed in their concerts.
The album includes covers of songs ranging from classic rock and pop favorites Fleetwood Mac, Aretha Franklin and Whitney Houston to modern stars Demi Lovato, Maroon 5, Alessia Cara and Coldplay.
“The songs were chosen based on the talent we have,” Pickering said.
He explained that students submit song ideas and then listen to the songs as a group to determine which music best fits the student singers.
“The other directors and I want to gear the project for student success,” Pickering said.
Recording for the album took place in a state-of-the-art recording studio in the school’s choir room and encompassed 700-800 hours including tracking and recording each student. Recording began in March, was finished in June, and was then sent to a producer to mix.
“It is really a unique experience for the students to go into a recording studio,” Pickering said. “It has impacted the overall achievement of the groups. It’s unlike what a lot of students at high school, and even at the collegiate level, experience.”
Pre-orders for the CD were taken last spring, but anyone interested in purchasing a CD can email Pickering at email@example.com. The album is also available on all major streaming platforms including Apple Music, Spotify and Amazon Music. ∞
Photo: Pictured is the cover art of the “After Shock” A Cappella album. Photo submitted.