The School Newspaper of Cherry Hill High School East

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The School Newspaper of Cherry Hill High School East

Eastside

The School Newspaper of Cherry Hill High School East

Eastside

Belles and Voce of East perform for guests touring the White House

Vocalists+from+Belles+and+Voce+of+East+pose+for+a+photograph+while+performing+for+guests+touring+the+White+House+in+Washington%2C+D.C.
Courtesy of @bellesofeast
Vocalists from Belles and Voce of East pose for a photograph while performing for guests touring the White House in Washington, D.C.

Seven years ago, on Dec. 15, 2016, two Cherry Hill High School East vocal groups — 16 members from Belles of East and eight seniors from Voce — received the opportunity to perform in a small corner of the White House in Washington, D.C. for several spectators, including former President Barack Obama. Fast forward to now, seven years later, on Sunday, Dec. 17, 2023, when members of the East Belles and Voce vocal groups performed for an hour in the East Wing of the White House as well.

Despite Belles consisting of an all-girl singing group that incorporates a set of bells into slower-paced songs, compared to Voce, a mixed group of performers who specializes in jazz and theatrical songs, the two vocal groups collaborated for the successful culmination of an entertaining performance for guests touring the East Wing of the White House.

After performing at Philadelphia’s Christmas Village, churches and retirement homes within the community, Belles and Voce of East received word of their performance in the White House only a few weeks before the event. From there, the two vocal groups began preparing for the honor of performing in the White House, where citizens of the United States can join together to bond over one common idea — music.

“I liked seeing the joy on everyone’s faces when they heard the holiday songs that they can reminisce on,” said Ronak Pathak (‘26), a member of Voce, while reflecting upon his group’s performance at the White House. Pathak proceeds to state how the Belles and Voce vocalists “wanted to make sure everyone could feel the holiday spirit and [the vocalists] were really happy to be able to uplift and entertain the guests during such a festive time.”

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While President Joe Biden was unable to attend the event — unlike President Obama seven years prior — Belles and Voce were still extremely grateful for the opportunity to bring joy to the lives of their guests. “It wasn’t all about trying to meet the president; it was the special time that we shared together and the happiness we were able to spread through our performance,” said Pathak.

Following the hour-long performance, the two vocal groups received a comprehensive tour of the East Wing, observing two Christmas trees and a variety of bright holiday decorations throughout, including within the Green Room, the Blue Room, the Red Room and the State and Family Dining Rooms.

“It was already so special to be performing in — let alone entering — such a historic building, that receiving a tour of the East Wing made the moment all the more meaningful,” said Katie Sullivan (‘25), another vocalist from Voce. Sullivan continues to express how both groups were “extremely grateful to be a part of such a cool and exciting opportunity that not many people can say they experienced…I think everyone was shocked that [the performance] actually happened and that we really just sang for guests in the White House.”

“The atmosphere of being there and knowing what the White House represents was extremely special. We had to pinch ourselves to make sure we weren’t dreaming,” added Pathak.

Overall, the Belles and Voce vocal groups from East successfully performed for countless guests touring the White House. From singing festive Christmas Carols to observing intricate holiday decorations, the experience our vocal groups shared was something that individuals from all political parties could enjoy.

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About the Contributor
Landon Schuster, Eastside Online News Editor
Landon Schuster is currently a sophomore and the Eastside Online News Editor. Along with being a first-year member of the Eastside Editorial Board, Landon enjoys playing tennis for the East Boys Varsity Tennis Team, serving as the President of the Cherry Hill Chapter of the non-profit organization, KUTE, and participating in DECA as well as FOP. Landon also enjoys playing saxophone, watching sports, and spending time with family and friends.

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