Turn Up the Volume: Hugo '23 Is Singing Out!

Sixth grader Hugo sings in front of large audiences so often that the nervous butterflies that usually accompany major performances have begun to fade.

And that he does! Hugo discovered his spark of genius as a first grader in a Dwight after-school chorus, under the direction of Lower School music teacher, Vita Zambetti. After performing in his first concert in front of parents and faculty in our Quad, Hugo felt encouraged to launch his "kid career" as a singer. He hasn't stopped singing since!

In second grade, Hugo and his brother joined the children's choir at Madison Avenue Presbyterian Church directed by Mary Huff, who also directs the New York City Children's Chorus (NYCCC). Hugo became a member of the NYCCC after a successful audition the same year, and now sings in their concert choir advanced treble ensemble.

Hugo's most exciting performance with the NYCCC came recently when he sang backup with Carly Simon at the Tribeca Film Festival. He's participated in several other impressive events with the group, including a one-night Broadway performance of The Man Who Came to Dinner with Nathan Lane at the Roundabout Theatre; an appearance on ABC's "Good Morning America;" singing the National Anthem at the Rolex Central Park Horse Show; and a recording of the U.S. premiere of composer Roberto Scarcella Perin''s "Le Passioni dell'Anima" in Italian, pieces written expressly for a children's chorus.

Hit play to check out his performance of "Le Passioni dell'Anima":



This March, Hugo was selected to be an understudy for the role of the third spirit in Clarion Music Society's production of "The Magic Flute." He's been hard at work learning the music and staging for the opera — all in German.

Hugo shares that his favorite thing about singing is that he can do it anytime, anywhere. He says, "There's always a time for singing — there's always an occasion. There is a song for everything!"

As for a singing career as an adult, Hugo says he'd consider it. "I guess my singing career could carry on, and I like to think that it will. It's sounds really cool and I think it would fit me!" He adds that even if he decides to do something else when he grows up, no matter what, he'll always keep singing!

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