Beatty's "Santa Babies" earn second place at the Helper Christmas Parade, fi rst for CEU

Posted Thursday, January 17, 2008 - 12:00am

At the end of November, Dean

of Students DEl Beatty organized

an entertainment group to perform

on a CEU fl oat for the Helper Light

Parade. "I really wanted CEU to

participate so I threw around ideas

and not a lot of people were excited

about it so I said, 'Well, I'll just do

it then.'"

"I heard about the Helper Light

Parade and CEU hadn't participated

in it for 10 years or whatever ... So

I came up with a song that I had

done with Acclamation [an SUU

entertainment group] and still had

a copy of it so I decided to use it.

The costumes were costumes that I

had already borrowed from someone

else, minus the big wedding dresses,

of course. So I borrowed the green

jackets and we bought the wedding

dresses. I wanted to just see if we

could get a group together to perform

at the parade.

We were going to have auditions

for the group. Originally I was going

to have two or three girls, two

or three boys, but when we started,

I decided to have all girls, which I'm

glad we did now because it worked

out better and it was just for that

one event, he said.

He chose Amanda Watters, Amy

Guthrie, Amy Jensen, Emily McRae,

Emily Leishman, Jenna Jepson and

Jaimie Scoville to sing on the fl oat.

Th ey were paid almost the equivalent

of $10 per hour. Th ey were all there

for approximately an hour each of

the two nights.

"Santa's Babies" was a name that

they were thinking about calling

themselves throughout the process,

along with "DEl's Belles" and a few


"In the future – we're talking

about possibly putting together an

entertainment group that would be

a performance group that would

represent the institution," he said.

"Ideally, what I would have like

to have done is to have cordless

headset microphones, which is what

I used with my groups before. Th ey're

expensive and that's something that

we'll look for with the performance

group, that's what we would do," he


"We taught the music to everyone

and they actually sang live. Th ey

were singing to a vocal sweetening

recording of themselves just for the

sake of being loud in the parade.

"That's actually, I think, what

generated so much buzz and how our

entry was diff erent from everyone

else's. They might have had some

Christmas music playing with a

boom box, but you couldn't hear it,

so we had big speakers and amplifi ers

and if it wouldn't have been snowing

and cold, we would have actually

had microphones for them to use as

well, but it wasn't worth chancing

the equipment to do it, so ...

We were going to sing two songs

in rotation, "The Most Wonderful

Time of the Year" and "Santa Claus

is Comin' to Town," but then, after

we learned "Santa Claus is Comin'

to Town" and we just threw it together

so quickly that I decided to

just sing one song, which I'm glad

we did now.

"Oh my gosh, they loved us,"

Beatty exclaimed. In fact, so many

people talked about it and said,

"It was so good to have you at our

parade, we appreciate it so much!"

Th ey wrote about it in the newspaper

and we have our little plaque that

shows we won. They were just so glad

that CEU was participating and that's

what we need to do more of, involvement

in the community."

What makes the group diff erent

from a traditional choir such as the

chamber choir that's directed by Russell

Wilson, the vocal professor at College

of Eastern Utah, is "it was just for that

one event, for one thing and also, they

were singing a little bit more with front

placement so we weren't as classical and

it was more just to purely entertain and

not necessarily for the value of the aesthetics

of the choral music, he said.

That's why as we look to put together

a performance group in the future, it

will be more like a show choir. Th e

purpose of that is to entertain. A lot of

times, traditional choral music doesn't

have wide audience appeal. I mean, I

have a degree in music and appreciate

it, but wide audience appeal has to be

more versatile.

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