Abraham rehearses for one of her many performances. Between school and out of school singing she also finds time to sing in the Choir Program
Abraham rehearses for one of her many performances. Between school and out of school singing she also finds time to sing in the Choir Program

Carnegie Calling

Senior invited to perform at Carnegie Hall

As far back as she could remember, senior Rena Abraham wanted to be a singer. From her first music lessons at age 4, to her performances for the Hebron choir, all of her years of singing led to this: an invitation to perform at Carnegie Hall. Abraham said this is more than an invitation — it is a golden ticket to perform in the same hall that graced the Beatles and Louis Armstrong.

Abraham landed on Carnegie Hall’s radar when she entered the “American Protégé International Competition” this summer. She won second place after performing “I’d give my life for you” from the broadway musical “Miss Saigon.” Abraham said her family has a lot to do with her developing her skills.

“[My family was] very supportive,” Abraham said. “They recognized my talent before I did, so they enrolled me in music schools and gave me every opportunity. The reason that I’m doing what I’m doing is because of them.” 

Senior Sanjana Kalyandar has known Abraham since they met in choir sophomore year in the varsity girls choir. Abraham said Kalyandar played a big role in helping her along the way. 

“She has a really good voice, and over the past two years especially, I’ve heard her develop and grow a lot.” Kalyandar said “She’s always had talent, and I know that she works hard for it.”

Kalyandar was one of Abraham’s confidants during the audition process and was a major source of advice. Kalyandar said Abraham’s singing style was one of the things that separated her from the rest of the participants in the audition

“Throughout the audition process, she played some of her videos for me and I got to listen and give feedback,” Kalyander said. “She’s very confident, and her style is also very unique. It’s almost like an old soul is singing to you, and it’s really cool to see that in such a young person. It’s very different to what we hear on the radio today.”

With an invitation of this stature, Abraham said she hopes this performance can serve as a major stepping stone for her future in music. The venue is most notable for its rich history of jazz, Rena’s preferred genre of music.

“I would like to record my own music and try to put that online,” Abraham said. ”I want to keep pursuing music, so I [would like to] join different groups, like choirs and chamber choirs. I want to just keep singing throughout my life.”

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