WHAT? ANOTHER POST WITH SUBSTANCE?!
I know! I’m shocked, too. But I’m trying to get with the program, and get y’all some posts!
Speaking of getting with the program, Fox’s Glee returns this Thursday (tomorrow)!
I have sort of a love/hate relationship with the show, but I can’t stop watching it! The directors/writers seem to have a tendency to use the characters as plot devices: forget about any previous character development, this character is going to have THIS personality today!
But it’s still kind of fun.
If you weren’t in show choir, and you’ve ever watched Glee, you might think that students enrolled in this awesome extra-curricular are insane. And if real show choirs learned choreography and vocals for as many songs as the Glee kids do, you’d be right.
In my experience, a typical show choir learns, and practices (over and over and over again) 4 to 5 songs, participates in a number of competitions, and then goes home for the summer – probably after an end-of-year concert of some sort.
Glee also seems to have some sort of extremely well organized Show Choir competition system, complete with regionals, state, nationals, etc. While there are probably competitions like this, my school typically competed at completely unrelated competitions. Within the competitions, you’d compete during the day for one score, and then if you were one of the 6 or 7 top scoring groups, you’d compete in the “Finals” that night (or sometimes the next day, depending on the size/setup of the competition).
There are other inconsistencies as well, but I suppose no one claimed that Glee was meant to be a true representation of show choirs, or of high school life (though, personally, I wish I had burst into song much more frequently during my high school years).
But there’s one thing that Glee got absolutely right. Through the various seasons, the New Directions’ membership has grown rather substantially, and while they started with the downtrodden and outcast, their group now includes students from all kinds of social groups.
They’ve got cheerleaders, jocks, nerds, religious kids, atheists, gays, straights, and everything in between. They’ve had their fights and their differences, but when it all comes down to it, they’ve all got each other’s backs, and that’s an experience I can relate to.
Maybe we weren’t all best friends, but the people in my show choir were friends. The jocks, the cheerleaders, the nerds, the gays; the straights. It was the great equalizer of high school – it exposed us to people different than ourselves, and it helped us all realize that we really weren’t that different after all – and that’s a big realization for a high school student.
Glee might not be the most wonderful show – its plot is often about as plausible as a sentient bag of cotton candy – but it certainly got this right. And for accurately portraying that vital aspect of show choir, I’m definitely a fan.
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