By: Carolyn Rizza 

Ryan Cabrera was one of the amazing acts on the HCRHS stage. Photo Courtesy of Carolyn Rizza.

Right when the dismissal bell rang at 2:03 on Wednesday, May 30th, people started lining up outside HCRHS. Hunterdon Central Regional High School held a benefit concert for the Fine Arts Department in our auditorium, with performances by The Cab, Ryan Cabrera, Nalani and Sarina, and The Battle of the Bands winner, Spots.  This event was hosted by Aaron Carter, who also surprised the audience by singing songs from around 10 years ago. Around 800 people filled the auditorium seats in the 9/10 building. During the four hour show, the auditorium was filled with singing, dancing, and cheering from the fans. The flash of the cameras and the beat of the bass created an invincible mood. Aaron Carter hosted the concert but he couldn’t leave without singing his hit song from the late ’90s: I Want Candy. Suddenly the crowd of high school students was brought back to their childhood days. All the artists on stage shared personal stories, such as when Ryan Cabrera told us how he and his friends played “Tattoo Roulette” and how he now has a rainbow unicorn on his ankle. Because of all the personal stories shared by the artists, the crowd felt like they knew the performers personally. After the show, the bands came out to meet the fans. T-shirts, CDs and other merchandise were sold for all the fans to enjoy. Everyone left the concert, smiling ear to ear and wanting more. It was an amazing feeling to see hundreds of different people bond over the same music and talent.

“It was definitely the biggest and most professional show I’ve ever played and it was everything and more than what I expected.” said the guitarist for Spots, Doug Gallo.

The Battle of the Bands winner, Spots. Photo Courtesy of Carolyn Rizza.

I also talked to a student who went to the show: “They were outstanding! Extremely interactive with the audience and they were very animated on stage. All the performers put on an amazing show,” said junior, Cydney Cohn.

That night couldn’t have gone better! All the bands were excited to come to a high school and play a more personal show for their fans.  In fact, some fans came to the New Jersey all the way from Ohio.  The audience was impressed by the amount of energy put into each set. The fact that this concert was actually a fundraiser for the school really surprised me.  I think this was a great idea to raise money and I hope the bands come back to perform for us again!  I personally loved every second of it! Everyone had a great time and we hope you all join us next time!

Cover Image Courtesy of Carolyn Rizza. 

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