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In February, senior and UHS Advanced Musicianship student Aiden Dorant (’24) experienced a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to showcase his vocal talents with like-minded singers and gifted peers at Carnegie Hall for the High School Honors Performance Series.

Music has been an integral part of Aiden’s life for as long as he can recall. “I’ve been singing since I was a baby, and I started playing the piano around three. It wasn’t until my junior year of high school that sight-reading became a serious part of my journey,” said Aiden.

Toward the end of last school year, Aiden received an invitation to audition for the prestigious performance series. Submission requirements were an audio recording of himself singing a classical repertoire piece to the melody of Caro Mio Ben.

During this period, Aiden found support from numerous individuals whom he acknowledges as instrumental in his journey to Carnegie Hall. He credits Music Director Mr. Knox for endorsing him for the series, Chuck Goehring, accompanist for playing piano for his audition tape, and Director of Communications Nila Nealy for offering a sympathetic ear during moments of overwhelm. Above all, Aiden expresses profound gratitude to his entire family, whose unwavering encouragement throughout his life fueled his pursuit of music and accompanied him every step of the way to New York.

When reflecting on his experience in the performance series, Aiden could only convey the feeling it stirred within him. “From the moment the shuttle picked us up from the airport, I felt an overwhelming sense of euphoria. We were grouped with ten to twelve people, and we instantly bonded.” From rehearsals to the final performance, Aiden expressed, “Being surrounded by individuals who share the same level of skill, talent, and passion as me brought me joy.”

Aiden embraced the opportunity to showcase his vocal abilities on stage at Carnegie Hall for the performance series. Accompanied by his mother, he connected with student vocalists from across the globe who shared his passion. The exhilarating feeling of performing in New York on such a prestigious stage is unparalleled.

Although performing at Carnegie Hall will forever be etched in his memory, Aiden sees it as another milestone along his journey. With his sights on the future, Aiden dedicated his four years at University High School to honing his musical skills and refining his craft, aspiring to join the ranks of the Aeolians—a student group at Oakwood. This fall, he plans on attending Oakwood University, where he intends to pursue a double major in Biology and Music: Vocal Performance and Pedagogy. Music will remain a part of Aiden’s life and career path.