Q&A: Elias Perez and Haley Stalzer

As the show choir competition season approaches, the Little Hawk gets some reflections and goals from Fourth Avenue Jazz. Co soloists, Haley Staltzer ‘18 and Elias Perez ‘19.


What is your favorite song in the show and why?

HS: My favorite is “Sun Is Never Going Down” because I really like the choreography.

BP: My favorite song is our ballad “Who Wants to Live Forever.” [The ballad] is that one song where we get to show off our vocals and change people. I’ve listened to so many fantastic ballads and I want to move people the way I’ve been moved.

How do you feel about the upcoming competition season?

HS: I’m really excited about it. I think it’s important that we continue to work hard and I can see that at this point in time our show is really coming together. We’re getting the combo involved and that is the most exciting part. 

BP: I’m very excited for this competition season. I think City High could do really really well. We’ve had a couple rough years but I think this is the year where we break pretty good and become excellent. After Works In Progress I feel extremely confident in our show. We’re going to kill it.

How many years have you been in show choir?

HS: This is my sixth year in show choir. I started show choir in seventh grade at Southeast.

BP: This is my fifth year of show choir. I started in junior high.

What has been your favorite show choir moment?

HS: I really liked last year’s show. The Beyoncé medley was really memorable and we really connected with everyone.

BP: My favorite memory would be getting to work with the seniors from last year. I was an underclassmen and even though they were older they were really nice and I felt completely included.

How do you practice and prepare for shows?

HS: I spend a lot of time rehearsing the choreography. Also, mentally preparing is super important before shows. I get really nervous so I always take time to focus on my breathing and meditate before each performance.

BP: I look over the music when I get it and I learn it well before we start dancing. I rewatch the videos the choreographer makes and I dance, check problem spots, and work on it to the best of my ability.

What’s your favorite part of competition season?

HS: I really like performing but my favorite part is watching the other show choirs. [I like] seeing how different each show is and what they bring to the table. Some have crazy props and that’s really fun [to see].

BP: I think my favorite part of competition season is just meeting new people. I get to watch other shows and talk to the people in them.

What advice would you give to others aspiring to make Fourth Ave?

HS: I think it’s important to know that it’s a lot more work than people think. You really have to work hard and pay attention during rehearsal and if you don’t know the choreography you have to ask people around you.

BP: Go into your audition with your most optimistic attitude. Have fun and smile. Smiling is key in show choir. The audience will be more engaged with facials than the dancing. Go in there and give them everything you’ve got. Work it!

What do you think of the people who make up Fourth Ave this year?

HS: I think overall it’s been pretty good. I love everyone in the group and I think we have a lot of potential this year. Everyone is super talented so it’s really fun.

BP: I think [they’re] a fun and hilarious bunch of people. They’re all great. Everyone has a positive attitude. Everyone’s excited to win and make this show amazing.

How do you think being apart of Fourth Ave has impacted your high school experience?

HS: Show choir is probably the most influential part of my time in high school. I’m not big into sports so music and show choir is pretty important to me. Going to rehearsal is always the best part of my week.

BP: I think that Fourth Ave has helped me become the person I am. It showed me that I can do what I want and love and not be embarrassed. I can sing and dance in costume and have fun, be with fantastic people and have a grand old time.