This week, the upper school show choir Downbeat released a special video for its annual holiday outreach tour, which typically takes place on the first Friday of December. “For the last 25 years, Downbeat has toured all over the Bay Area, bringing holiday joy to preschools, senior centers, dementia units, Grace Cathedral’s homeless lunch clients, the children’s cancer ward at Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital and more,” said Laura Lang-Ree, upper school performing arts chair. In addition to performing, they also bring gifts, cookies and spend time chatting with residents.
Due to safety concerns caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the tour could not be held this year, but the students felt the tradition should continue in some form. “Downbeat decided it was important to continue the tradition for all of our regular outreach places and spread even more joy, as so many people are alone over the holidays due to the pandemic,” Lang-Ree said. Downbeat members spent considerable time over the fall semester creating the video, including the sound editing, arranging and narration. It will be sent to various Bay Area schools, youth centers, hospitals and care facilities. Members of the Harker community can view the video by logging in to the Harker portal and visiting the Performing Arts page.