Carroll Singer Performs at Carnegie Hall
Feb 17, 2016 02:20PM
● By Audrey Sellers
CSHS senior Allie Miller (right)
For many singers, performing at Carnegie Hall is a dream. For Allie Miller, a senior at Carroll Senior High School, it’s a dream come true. Miller was selected by choir teacher Marla Ringel to audition for the High School Honors Performance Series. She was selected as a finalist, and on February 7, Miller sang at Carnegie Hall as part of the High School National Women’s Choir.
More than 18,000 high school students auditioned, and only 650 students worldwide were selected for the honor. Read on to hear from Miller, who is now officially one of the world’s most elite singers.
Southlake Style: How long have you been singing?
Miller: I’ve been singing publicly since the age of three!
SS: Did you ever dream one day you’d perform at Carnegie Hall?
Miller: I dreamed that one day I could, but never actually believed that I would—especially at the age I am today. I’m honored and filled with pride for this amazing experience.
SS: What did the choir sing?
Miller: My conductor was Elizabeth Schauer. We sang:
*Dixit Dominus, by Johann Michael Haydn
*Den Tod Versus ||, by Johann Sebastian Bach
*Der Brautigam, by Johannes Brahms
*Ya Faraoule - A traditional Lebanese and Egyptian folk song by Stephen Hatfield
*Bonny Wood Green - A traditional Irish Ballad by Stephen Hatfield
*We Rise Again, by Leon Dubinsky
SS: What was the experience like overall?
Miller: This experience was unlike any other I’ve ever had the privilege of being part of. I met so many people from around the world and cultivated lasting relationships. Everyone was equally talented and we all became very close. We practiced daily for endless hours and made memories that are irreplaceable.
SS: How did you prepare for the performance?
Miller: Our music was mailed to us over the course of a couple months and we were expected to learn and sight read our material without being taught or conducted prior. I practiced mostly on my own and sight read the music before going to New York City and with my voice teacher, Mrs. Regina Walters.
SS: Do you have any pre-performance rituals?
Miller: One of my pre-performance rituals would have to be my alone time. I tend to need five or 10 minutes of private time to warm myself up and collect my thoughts prior to the performance. Also, to alleviate some of the nerves.
SS: Was anything surprising about the experience?
Miller: Yes! I was blown away by the diversity of people from around the world that performed with me. There were students from Mexico, Panama, Guam, Germany, China and many other countries. It was amazing to sing with performers who speak other languages and cultivate friendships around the world.
We all slept four people to a room, so we became very close with our roommates. Even though our time was extremely rigorous and demanding, we found the time to relax and enjoy ourselves, while building lasting friendships.
We had lots of free time in the afternoons, which included guided tours around the city, a viewing at the top of Rockefeller Center, a Broadway show (I chose “Phantom of the Opera”), and a celebration dinner cruise aboard a humongous private yacht on the Hudson River.
SS: How does it feel to be part of such an elite group of singers?
Miller: It feels amazing! The most amazing part of all of this is that it wasn't national; it was international. I am absolutely honored to have been part of this incredible group of performers and to have sang where legends have performed. I will never forget this experience or how it felt to sing at Carnegie Hall.
SS: What’s the biggest lesson you learned?
Miller: The biggest lesson I learned is practice, practice, practice and patience, patience, patience. It takes both to be a performer. You’re not always going to have great days and your voice is not always going to give you what you expect, but as the saying goes, practice makes perfect. Keep trying and never give up.
SS: What would you say to aspiring singers?
Miller: Make sure you explore every opportunity. Never let one of those opportunities pass you by. Build your musical resume and believe that you can achieve great things. All it takes is for someone to believe in you, but first you must believe in yourself.
SS: What’s next for you?
Miller: College! I'm so excited for this next chapter of my life and what it holds for me. I hope to excel in music performance and continue performing around the world, or as far as my talent will take me.
I intend to earn a degree in music education/music therapy and aspire to become as great as my choir teacher Mrs. Marla Ringel. She has been an inspiration to me, and without her guidance and education, I would have never made it this far.
SS: Anything else you'd like to share?
Miller: I just want to thank everybody for believing in me and providing me with this unforgettable opportunity. I’m extremely honored. God has blessed me in so many ways and I will never forget this amazing experience, nor the people I met at Carnegie Hall. I’m excited to see what the future has in store for me.