Burbank High Students Sing to Save the Music | NBC Southern California

Burbank High Students Sing to Save the Music

Burbank High School's show choir is one of the inspirations for the TV show "Glee"

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    It was showtime at Burbank High School, but for nearly 200 teenagers, Thursday night was much more than just another performance.

    Their award-winning music program is in deep financial trouble, and is in danger of being cut.

    Burbank High Students Sing to Save the Music

    [LA] Burbank High Students Sing to Save the Music
    Burbank High School students sing to help raise money to help prevent cuts to their music program (Published Thursday, May 19, 2011)

    Burbank High School's show choir is one of the inspirations for the TV show "Glee." The program is led by music director Brett Carroll.

    He said it costs about $250,000 a year to run the choir program, most of it through private donations. This year, they're $30,000 short.

    So they put on a performance Thursday night, to be followed by performances on Friday and Saturday nights, to try and raise the money to avoid serious cuts.

    "A lot of these students, this brings them to school. This gets them up in the morning, it gets them to school everyday. It really motivates them to be in school, and to do well," said Carroll.

    The teens realize the program is something special and they're proud to be part of trying to save it.

    "It means the world to me. You don't get this anywhere. In a classroom? No. We're family here," said choir member April Hishinuma.

    Parent volunteers said arts programs like this are the key to helping build self-esteem.

    "Sure they might not all end up on Broadway, and they might not end up doing this as a career, but it's taught them determination, family, structure, how to compete and how to want something really bad, and that's what these kids do," said parent Ellie Stockwell.