Evelyn Reyes is a senior and Premier Choir Co-President. She has spent the last 11 years with BCC starting in Central Training, then moving up to Dorchester Advanced Training Choir, Dorchester Intermediate Choir, Central Intermediate Advanced Choir, Concert Choir, and lastly Premier Choir.
Why did you join BCC?
My mom heard about BCC on the radio one day on the way home, and she thought it would be a great place for me since I would always come home singing “This Land Is Your Land.” The beginning was a bit rough, though. At my first attempt at an audition, I got too scared and couldn’t get into the room. Thankfully, the second time, I got in the door!
Why is BCC special to you? What does BCC mean to you?
BCC is special to me because it’s a place where I feel safe. I feel good being my whole self in this community, and that’s really special. On top of that, it’s a microcosm of my aspirations for the world. I love that there is space to have in-depth conversations and disagree, personal growth is encouraged, and it’s diverse far beyond tokenism. Beyond that, BCC is my second family.
What has been your most memorable moment at BCC thus far? What is your favorite part about being in BCC?
The Australia tour this past July was incredible. I will always remember those two weeks because they were the best balance of fun and exhausting. One memory that sticks out is going to lunch with a few friends in downtown Hobart. We got ramen and dumplings from Dumpling World, and they were delicious! Another memory that pops out is our rush onto the Sydney Opera House stage to perform. At that point, we were all tired, but it was an amazing performance. I am grateful for all the people that I have met at BCC, and my favorite part of every season is bonding. It’s really special to me how quickly we become a family.
What is your favorite piece that you have sung with BCC thus far?
My all-time favorite piece is “This Land is Your Land” by Woody Guthrie, arranged by Stephen Feigenbaum.
What has been your favorite concert/performance at BCC thus far?
So far, Concert Choir’s first performance at the Shalin Liu Performance Center in Rockport in 2017 has been my favorite. That concert was full of passion, and we worked hard to deliver our message. For that concert, some folks and I got together to plan out the movement of the choir, which was an exciting challenge. To top the night off, we had a party to celebrate what we had accomplished. All in all, it was a fantastic time.
What do you do when you are not singing or attending rehearsals, aka life outside of BCC?
Outside of BCC, I work with the Boston Student Advisory Council. We are a body of students that advocate for the rights of all Boston Public School students. Our job is to advise the district on policy, ensure that BPS is delivering the best education it can, and bring the voice of young people to both city and state tables. I am also the student representative on the Boston School Committee. I work to amplify the student voice on the committee that makes runs the entire district. Aside from my job, I also hang out with my younger sisters (Ailey and Eleanor).
What does our season theme, Breaking the Glass, mean to you?
To me, this season’s theme speaks to how we all have challenges we need to fight to overcome. Some of these fights may not end with us, but each of us must chip away at that glass, whatever it may represent.
How are you “breaking the glass” in your life?
I think that I am “breaking the glass” with the work that my peers and I do in the Boston Public Schools. Youth voices are undervalued across the board, and that is why our advocacy is needed.
Any last thoughts?
I can’t believe this is my last year with BCC. I’m going to miss it all so much!