Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Rebecca Loebe has The Voice!!

Yesterday the PS22 Chorus of 2013 received a visit from the wickedly talented (but angelically-dispositioned) Rebecca Loebe! Rebecca got some wonderful well-deserved nationwide exposure last year as a THE VOICE contestant (she was on Team Adam!), and now she continues making and putting out music as an independent artist. PS22 had the pleasure of performing two of her original songs together. The first is the more upbeat performance of our collaboration entitled, "Swallowed By The Sea," and we were thrilled to have Daniel-san stop by to contribute his skills to make this particular version even more extra special! The second is the somber and beautiful, "Mercy." You can check out both performances below.

We thank Rebecca for being such a wonderful and inspiring guest! She radiated pure good energy and the kids and we all were touched by her glow. Rebecca herself wrote a narrative about her experience at PS22 and how deeply moved she was ("one of the most incredible things I have done in my life"), and you can read that on her blog here. We send her enormous thanks, as well as to Ms. Lisa for filming the performances and her wonderful pics below!

Saturday, October 20, 2012


There was no way the PS22 Chorus of 2013 was not going to have a blast tackling "Ho Hey" by The Lumineers -- such a fun song!! What WAS somewhat surprising, was just how quickly the kids would make a success of it.... Here is yet another song this prolific new group of fifth graders, learned in only one rehearsal! Special thanks to Mr. Eberle for joining in on the mandolin, and as always, Ms. Lisa for filming!!

UPDATE 10-22-12: The Lumineers posted the chorus's version on their Facebook page, saying "Thanks PS22" and calling it "a great cover..."  On  their Twitter page, they added "Looks like we could take a few pointers from these guys..."   Thanks to the band for their gracious feedback!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

PS22 Chorus sings "Home" at Four Freedoms Park!

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg introduces the PS22 Chorus, who welcomes Franklin D. Roosevelt "Home" with Phillip Phillips song at the Four Freedoms Park Ribbon Cutting Ceremony yesterday! Along the way the kids make some new fans out of former NYC Mayor David Dinkins, former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, NBC newscaster Tom Brokaw, and former United States President Bill Clinton!

Thanks to Ms. Lisa for filming! And check out some more pics of the event below, courtesy of Mrs. Panzella!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

PS22 Chorus kids are DISPARATE YOUTH

Here we present Santigold's "Disparate Youth" from her brilliant new album, Master Of My Make Believe! We figured this would prove a perfect song both vocally and thematically for the PS22 Chorus of 2013! The kids (including soloist Alicea) yet again only started learning this at today's practice and they thoroughly deliver! Another amazing highlight from this new group that's been singing together for little over a month... hard to believe!

Monday, October 15, 2012

ONCE IN A LULLABY voted BEST DOCUMENTARY at Woodstock Film Festival!

"ONCE IN A LULLABY: The PS22 Chorus Story" premiered at Tribeca Film Festival back in April, and ever since, Jonathan Kalafer's documentary has been taking the film festival circuit by storm!   What's the latest good news surrounding the film?  It was just voted Best Documentary at last week's sold-out screening during the Woodstock Film Festival according to IndieWIRE Magazine!  The film was also recently voted Best Documentary at the New Jersey Film Festival!  (NJIFF will be giving an encore screening of the PS22 Chorus documentary at Rutger's University this Friday!  Click here for ticket info!)  We are thrilled by all the wonderful accollades the movie continues to receive and are very hopeful that a distribution deal will be coming its way soon, so more people will be able to see this powerful documentary!  We'll continue to keep you posted!!

Film Director Jonathan Kalafer, Mr. B, & editor Devin Pickering at Woodstock Film Festival

Friday, October 12, 2012

Feels Like We Only Go Backwards

PS22 Chorus of 2013 does a lively acoustic cover of one of my favorite songs right now, "Feels Like We Only Go Backward," by the ultra-cool indie act, Tame Impala! The kids only started this today at rehearsal, and did a rather amazing job considering (or NOT considering)..... Additional props go to our new drummer Nicholas, and the phenomenal duo of Jianna & Matthew!!

UPDATE (10-13-12): Tame Impala put the video on its Facebook page exclaiming, "HOLY BAJOLY BATMAN!"

Wednesday, October 10, 2012


The fifth graders of the PS22 Chorus of 2013 are exploding with talent, shown here singing "Dynamite" by Taio Cruz! Soloist Christopher asked for this one, and of course we are blown away by his and the chorus's amazing performance!

Monday, October 08, 2012


PS22 Chorus of 2013 tackles what is surely one of the definitive classics in the history of pop music, "Wonderwall" by Oasis! With a simple acoustic guitar accompaniment, the kids absolutely nail this! And props to Dorian (whom you may remember wrote a song a couple of years back that the PS22 Chorus of 2011 covered called "Light The Fire") for his soulful delivery of the solo. It's hard to believe how tight the new 2013 crew sounds after little more than a handful of rehearsals, but the evidence of their hard work is indisputable here...

Saturday, October 06, 2012

PS22 Chorus Greets CREED's Scott Stapp With Arms Wide Open!

On Wednesday, the PS22 Chorus of 2013 was treated to a visit from the incredibly talented (and equally gracious) lead singer of CREED, Scott Stapp! Scott was in awe of our fifth graders and in one of the most inspiring moments of the collaboration, said to the kids, "I relate to you guys so much, you have no idea." Later on he added, "I'm so very proud of every one of you, and hope that you will allow me to come back." It was obvious that Scott felt right at home, saying multiple times how he just didn't ever want to leave! But we all made the most of the time we had, performing acoustic renditions of two incredible songs together -- the first was "Pray For Sunrise," a new song that comes as a free download with the purchase of Scott's new autobiography. The second was the Grammy-winning CREED song, "With Arms Wide Open!" You can check out both of the extraordinary performances below!

Biggest thanks to Scott Stapp for making time for us and making our kids feel so special! Also thanks to his wife Jaclyn (children's books author and former Miss New York 2004) for her wonderful positivity, Heather Taylor for arranging the visit, Scott Vollweiler for pointing Heather in our direction and for capturing the event with his stunning photography (seen on this post), Mr. Eberle for his fantastic guitar accompaniment, former 2012 chorus member Daniel-san for stopping by and joining in on the bongos, Mrs. Panzella for her amazing photos (the title pic of this post and two more below!), and Ms. Lisa for filming the performances so beautifully! Check out more of Scott's and Mrs. Panzella's pics below!

Wednesday, October 03, 2012

Jerrod Niemann is shinin' on PS22 Chorus!

Yesterday the PS22 Chorus of 2013 was treated to a visit from breakout country artist, Jerrod Niemann, who just released his album, "Free The Music!" They got two songs, Jerrod's #1 hit, "Lover Lover" and his first single from the new CD called, "Shining On Me!" The kids were not only treated to a wonderful musical collaboration, but also received a couple of tremendous gifts for their hard work.... Make sure you watch the "Shinin' on Me" vid to the end to find out what they were, and some extremely entertaining Q&A! Big thanks to Jerrod and everyone in his camp for making this all happen! MORE TO COME!!

Now check out these great pics courtesy of Ms. Lisa, Ms. Laurie, & Mrs. Panzella!