GBS students ‘seize the day’ in Variety Show
Junior Joe Lee sings the song, "Some Nights," by the group "Fun," during rehearsals for "Carpe Diem" the Glenbrook South Variety Show, on Monday, February 11, 2013. | Joel Lerner~Sun-Times Media
Updated: March 15, 2013 11:21AM
GLENVIEW — While Tim Kirby auditions for college music programs, the senior at Glenbrook South High School also is busy preparing for another stage.
The 38th annual GBS Variety Show soon begins its four-day run next week when Kirby will perform several numbers.
But he is most looking forward to singing a solo with his high school choral teacher, Martin Sirvatka, on piano.
Last year, Kirby played the phantom in the school’s spring musical, “Phantom of the Opera.”
He’s been in the Variety Show all four years in high school.
“Every year the show has been different for me. I love getting out and performing for people, but this is the most important Variety Show for me because it’s the last one,” said Kirby, a senior.
So far, Kirby has been accepted into the voice program at Elmhurst College, and he is still waiting to hear from the University of Illinois, Champaign; Indiana University and Northern University.
He believed the show sold out every year at Watson Auditorium because of its … well, variety.
“The different talents that people bring. You’d never expect it just from kids. There’s real variety.”
Jim Shellard, director of student activities at GBS, has been involved in the V-Show for 23 years.
For several years he produced the show that this year includes a cast and crew of 400.
The Variety Show started in 1976 as a tie-in to winter homecoming under the leadership of David Smith, who was Student Activities director and later principal until 2005.
This year’s theme is Carpe Diem, a Latin for “seize the day” that appeared in a poem by Horace.
“It means go for it, live in the moment, you only live once,” Shellard said, who used to juggle in the Variety Show and at the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium in Powell, Ohio.
“We give the kids a theme and they audition around it. The director and production staff comes up with a theme,” he said.
“The show is so popular because it’s a desired entity to be in, which raises the bar for auditions and the production value. All five shows sell out. More than 7,000 people see it.”
Shellard also said the sold out ticket sales provided funding for “great lighting and sets.”
Foreign exchange student Slorencia Cuadros will sing a solo — “Corre” — and play guitar.
“It’s a Spanish love song. The Variety Show is a great chance for me to see all the talented people here,” said Cuadros, who moved here from Santiago, Chile, to study at GBS for one year.
Two weeks ago, students in the school’s Korean Club produced a lip dub video for viewing during the Variety Show.
The three-minute video featured the entire GBS student body that included singing and dancing similar to the Korean artist Psy.
“It’s a fast-paced, unrehearsed very humorous video. It’s also very random because things keep popping up every second. You don’t know what’s coming next, said sophomore and video producer Chris Gin.
The GBS Variety Show opens 7:30 p.m. Feb. 20 at 7:30 p.m. and continues Feb. 21-22 at 7:30 p.m.
The Feb. 23 weekend shows are 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.
Reserved seating tickets may be purchased in advance for $13 at www.showtix4u.com or at the door or by calling (847) 486-4672.
Glenbrook South High School is at 4000 W. Lake Ave., Glenview.