Sky View’s Encore open the show for BYU Young Ambassadors

Image: Encore opening the show.

Encore opening the show. (Arianna Rees)

Cache Valley residents braved the snow and slush Saturday night to see the BYU Young Ambassadors sing on the Sky View high school stage along with Sky View’s choral group, Encore.

The program, titled “Harmony: The Music of Life,” began at 7:30 with a vintage-themed preshow by Encore. After their two musical numbers, the Young Ambassadors Show Band took the stage with their trumpets, saxophones, trombones, bass guitars, and other instruments to introduce the 20 member cast of singers and performers from BYU.

The Young Ambassadors sang and dance in a myriad of costumes to songs like “Through Heaven’s Eyes” (from the Prince of Egypt) and “Haven’t Met You Yet” by Michael Buble.

A combination of music, dance, and theatre, the group consists of performers chosen through an extensive selection process. Conlon Bonner is one of those performers, and he has participated in the Harmony show for two years.

“I had three other sisters that were in young ambassadors before me,” Bonner said, “and so I went to their Young Ambassadors camp in the summer and loved it and was converted, so I decided to be a part of it after that.”

Bonner said his favorite number of the night was “It’s Just Life” by Ross Boothe.

“I loved the ’It’s Just Life’ performance,” he said. “There I get to have so much fun because I get to do a lot of flips and everything like that. But I love the message that we share along with it. If there’s hard times, it’s just life. Get over it, and enjoy the good times.”

According to their website, The Young Ambassadors have performed their contemporary blend of song and dance in 56 nations of the world, including before the prime minister of India and the king and queen of Jordan.

Karen Teuscher, Encore director, said of the performance, “I think the kids did great. I was super proud of my Sky View kids. I think they worked really hard and they had a great time, and it really showed how much hard work they put it, and of course BYU Ambassadors. They’re awesome. They had the crowd just absolutely in the palm of their hands.”

Teuscher said that she spoke with some of the Ambassadors last year, interested in having the Encore kids participate in workshops with them. “They said, ‘Well, you know, we bring our show on the road and we’d be glad to come up and work with your kids and do a show’,” she said.

“It was one of the highlights of the year for my students,” she added. “They’re awesome to work with.”

Of Encore, she said, “I think they learned about performing energy and having fun while you’re on stage and also achieving that high, high, high level of musicianship and dance and acting skills—it’s just such a combination of all those things. And it’s hard work. They kind of saw the road and possibilities that are ahead of them.”

Jonathan Dayton, an Encore member, said that he thought the whole night was great. “The BYU Ambassadors are so good and just really nice,” he said.

The songs Encore sang, he added, are songs the group will perform in their floor show in March. He encouraged anybody who is interested to come and see them perform.

Of the performance, Bonner said, “We hope that the people that watched felt the spirit that came from it, an uplifting feeling to get them through whatever they’re going through or whatever it is. We prepare through reading our scriptures and also performing, and we want to put that on stage so that our light can shine and it can touch the other people who are watching. We hope we did that.”