White & Gold is Back


Ori Balkan

Mukherjee transitions from John Lennon to Black Sabbath.

The White & Gold variety show, performed April 30, included a number of vocal and instrumental acts. Considering the show has not been performed live since 2019, it seemed extremely professional.

The show opened with the fan favorite “teacher band” act, featuring English teacher Todd Butler on guitar, retired Spanish teacher John Summers on vocals, Social Studies teacher John Perse on harmonica and 2012 Beachwood alumni Michael Bohm also on guitar. 

The band played “No Expectations” by the Rolling Stones and “Seagull” by Bad Company. Summers’ vocal range on “No Expectations” was incredible. It sounded like Mick Jagger, but with a distinctive style.

The opening act also revealed the amazing set. This year’s theme was Hollywood, and it was one of my favorite parts of the show. The background of the set echoed the famous Hollywood sign, only the lettering spelled out Beachwood. The details on the hill and the sparkling sheets tied to the ceiling representing spotlights pointing to the sky tied the look together, and overall, the set looked flawless.

After the teacher band, the audience experienced a new type of act. Juniors Alex Thiam and Josh Khan created a song completely digitally. Colorful lights representing piano keys were projected onto the large screens beside the stage as the song played.

One of the best acts of the night was Rachael Kantarovich’s performance of “All Too Well” by Taylor Swift. Her piano playing, as well as her voice, expressed real emotion, and it was clear the song meant something to her. Her vulnerability as a performer was impressive.

Ja’Niya Rahman also clearly displayed her talent during her performance of “Black Sheep” by Metric. Her singing and body language were skillful.

Another act that stood out among the rest was sophomore Alexander Johnson’s performance of the Japanese song “King” by Kanaria. Johnson had a full choreography for his performance, and it displayed drama and talent. His ability to coordinate song and dance was truly impressive. It was one of the acts that didn’t feel like just a song, but like a full performance.

Another act that stood out to me was sophomore Probir Mukherjee’s performance of “Let it Be” by the Beatles, which transitioned into “Paranoid” by Black Sabbath. Similar to Johnson’s performance, his coordination of multiple skills made him captivating to watch. Mukherjee also showed off his incredible talent by being able to play such different genres of music. 

The closing act of the night represents the show as a whole. Most of the acts came up to play one final song together as the White & Gold Band, and were joined by show adviser Darlene Haight on the keyboard and Marc Chalice on vocals. They performed “Use Somebody” by Kings of Leon.

If you closed your eyes, it was be impossible to tell that it was a high school production and not a professional concert.

Overall, I am tremendously impressed with the professionalism and talent displayed this year, and the amount of effort put into the production obviously paid off. It will be a hard performance to top next year, but I’m sure that BHS can handle it.