Staff Shenanigans Takes the Stage

Shivani Manivasagan, Staff Writer

On May 17, Irvington hosted the first ever Staff Open Mic Night, also dubbed Staff Shenanigans.

After a full school year of various events and shows at Irvington, the informal atmosphere of Open Mic was refreshing. ASG put on the show—it was hosted by Jasraj Singh (11), who organized it with Arnav Kamra (11). The lighting was beautiful, and the night itself spanned a range of musical acts, from Mr. Ballin’s impressive singing/guitar/harmonica song covers to Mr. Mintey’s keyboard jam session. Ms. Berbawy and Mr. Johnson surprised the crowd with their memorable cover of “Shallow” by Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper, and Mr. Fraser with his passionate version of the classic “Can’t Take My Eyes Off You,” sung to a teddy bear onstage that was standing in for his significant other. That evening, Mr. Chan also proved himself to be a singer, and Ms. Reddy performed her unique (and relatable) “Geek Anthem.” Mr. Ip and his team provided a break from the singing acts, energizing the stage with Kpop choreography.

Mr. Mintey in particular unleashed his musical side and participated in many acts: an adorable duet with his daughter, an epic lip-syncing rap battle with Ms. Mattingly, and two song covers with Mr. Anaya’s guitar accompaniment, as well as the closer for the night. Enthusiasm was high and the crowd cheered when Principal Melsby walked onstage to join Mr. Mintey in his performance of “Life is a Highway,” creating a special conclusion to the laughter and fun-filled evening.

Videos from previous years’ Faculty Follies were also shown between acts, including the staff’s hilarious renditions of “What Does the Fox Say” and “Do You Want to Build A Snowman.” These served as a throwback for teachers and older students, and a preview of next year for underclassmen.

Open Mic was held as a spinoff of Faculty Follies, a biennial Irvington tradition where Irvington staff create funny skits and videos, but less musical acts like the ones that made up Open Mic. The show was not able to happen this year due to teachers’ scheduling conflicts, though they plan to resume next year.

“I think next year, Faculty Follies will be combined with Open Mic Night,” said Rishabh Chowhan (11), next year’s ASG Vice President. “There would probably be more karaoke, and teachers could get out of their seats and participate if they wanted to.”

Despite some last-minute issues in setting up due to students getting sick, ASG was able to successfully pull off the event.

“Rishabh spent almost the entire day in Valhalla to take care of the tech work,” said Kaitlyn Kodama (11), who also helped with the show.

Interestingly, Open Mic is related to one of ASG’s current campus beautification projects. The profit made from this show will pool into the budget for repaving part of the pavilion, outside the cafeteria. ASG’s goal is to get the pavilion paved this summer, before Maze Day.

Staff Shenanigans, Irvington’s premiere Open Mic Night, was overall a success, leaving us in anticipation of similar events to come next year.