Behind the Scenes: The Fematas

Olivia Pena, Staff Writer

Angelic voices echo off the concrete walls of Pennridge High School’s choir room. The smooth, melodic tones of 15 girls match pitch perfectly with a single piano note. The celestial song of the altos and sopranos fill the room. Shivers run up my spine as the rich vocals overlap and harmonize with perfection. I am surrounded by extremely talented and powerful vocalists. These are the Fematas.

I went behind the scenes of a rehearsal for the Fematas, a female acapella group here at Pennridge High School. The group is comprised of 20 vocally talented girls from all grade levels. They are rehearsing in preparation for the Winter Choral Concert. The Fematas plan to perform their rendition of “Light in the Hallway” by Pentatonix. The leader of the group is junior Delaney Nichols. This is the first year that this acapella group has been run by students and only the second year of its existence. I was lucky enough to witness the hard work, passion, and dedication that every single one of the girls puts into the Fematas.

After vocal warmups, the Fematas dived right into practicing their piece for the Winter Concert. Nichols is a strong and organized leader and directs the group with elegance and empowerment. The group responds well to her instruction. First, each group of altos and sopranos individually sings their part of the song and then the group all stands to sing together. When they sing together, I immediately get the chills. The song gives off a ghostly and somewhat solemn vibe. Once they finish singing, Nichols gives positive feedback and constructive criticism to the group. She instills confidence while pushing the group to their highest potential. “Forte, Forte, Forte!” she says as she encourages the girls to sing louder. It is clear the passion and love every girl has for this group and music in general. The Fematas are focused and are able to recognize areas that need work and address them. It is not long before the song sounds like it could be performed that night. I am amazed at the pure talent along with wholehearted devotedness that I observed at this rehearsal.

Frederick Delius once said, “Music is an outburst of the soul.” The Fematas exemplify this in every way. It is beyond evident that every single girl truly pours their heart and soul into the music. They embody feminine power and strength in that they are paving the way for the future generation of female vocalists at Pennridge High School. This is certainly not the last time you will see and hear from the Fematas.