Dinner dancing and Dadrigals

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The fathers of Convent of the Sacred Heart seniors showcase their singing and dancing skills in the Dadrigals performance during the annual Father Daughter Dinner Dance November 1. Emily Hirshorn ’15

Although the themes have spanned a spectrum of decades, locations, and genres, the purpose of Convent of the Sacred Heart’s Upper School Father Daughter Dinner Dance remains the same: to offer students a night of food, dancing, and fun with their dads. For seniors’ fathers in particular, the November 1 dance was a venue to showcase their singing and dancing skills in the annual Dadrigals performance.
After Upper School students and their fathers rushed into the Dubois gymnasium, they enjoyed a slide show presentation. Each slide displayed two pictures of a senior and her father; one from her childhood and one from the present day. The seniors’ fathers then shared a self-made video where they followed in their daughters’ footsteps, quite literally. The video featured the fathers piling out of a Sacred Heart bus, engaging in pillow fights in the core center, and splashing around in the school’s pool.
“I thought the video was great and that it looked like the dads had a ton of fun making it,” senior Emily Casper said. 
Dadrigals is a Sacred Heart tradition composed of the fathers of seniors that Mr. Alexander Constantine, Brunswick School’s Middle and Upper School Music Director, has led for 13 years. Mr. Constantine reworks the lyrics to many ballads for the dads to sing to their daughters, often with a humorous twist. To accomplish this feat, he runs twice weekly choir practices in preparation for the night’s performance.
Donning tuxedos and boutonnieres, the Dadrigals eagerly made their way up to the risers for their performance. 

The fathers of Convent of the Sacred Heart seniors showcase their singing and dancing skills in the Dadrigals performance during the annual Father Daughter Dinner Dance November 1. Emily Hirshorn '15
The fathers of Convent of the Sacred Heart seniors showcase their singing and dancing skills in the Dadrigals performance during the annual Father Daughter Dinner Dance November 1.
Emily Hirshorn ’15

As a father of three Sacred Heart students, Mr. Tom Libassi has had the opportunity to sing as a Dadrigal three times.
“Dadrigals is a fun way for us to give our daughters a unique present. It has enabled the dads to meet each other over a six week process with a common goal to create a great show for our daughters,” Mr. Libassi said.
Saturday night’s Dadrigal repertoire included “Four Year Follies,” “Senior Dad,” “Summer Days,” and “The Letter.” This performance brought the audience to laughter, especially when the dads put on bright colored wigs and jumped on and off chairs during a choreographed song.
They ended with “For Good” from Wicked, with the rewritten words of “Because I know you, I have been changed for good.” 
“‘For Good’ was definitely my favorite song this year. It was a hard song to sing without tearing up,” Mr. Libassi said.
Mr. Libassi, as well as all the other Dadrigals, expressed gratitude for Mr. Constantine and his musical and organizational abilities. The feeling is mutual, as revealed in Mr. Constantine’s thank you email to the Dadrigals the day after the performance.
“And to you, dads, thank you for allowing me to come into your life for a moment and share what is near and dear to my heart. I’m blessed to be doing what I love doing and to not only share it with my students, but with adults as well,” Mr. Constantine said. “I hope that as the time nears for your precious to move on to the next phase of her life that you will continue to reflect on last night as something you both will never forget.”
Although senior Isabella Libassi had the opportunity to see her dad perform in previous years when her elder sisters were seniors, the show bestowed new meaning once she was the senior in the audience. 
“Everyone in my family knows that my dad is not a natural dancer and doesn’t really like to dance, so seeing him up on stage singing and dancing meant a lot,” Isabella said.
The Dadrigals experience offers the fathers the opportunity to develop a relationship with each other and come together with the common goal of displaying their love for their daughters through song and dance.
“Six years ago I was nervous about participating in Dadrigals – now I can say that it is one of things that I will miss the most about CSH. It is a right of passing for all Sacred Heart dads and something that no dad should miss,” Mr. Libassi said.
– Emily Hirshorn, Opinions Editor