the staff of the Ridgewood blog
Paramus NJ, Vocalist Isabella Wisniewski used to dream of visiting Carnegie Hall and the Sydney Opera House. This year, she was invited to perform at both world-famous venues. In the space of a few months, Wisniewski sang with the 2023 Honors Performance Series in New York City, and followed up by bringing her vocal talents to the HPS in Australia.
“I’ve always dreamed of seeing the Sydney Opera House in real life, but I never would have thought that I would have the honor to sing there with a group of such talented individuals,” said Wisniewski, a junior at the Academy of the Holy Angels. “It was such a moving and breathtaking experience to sing at the Sydney Opera House. The choir was phenomenal and the opera house made us sound even better.”
The Paramus resident added, “The choir in Carnegie was a little bigger than the one in the Sydney Opera House, but the same passion and energy filled our music. It was fun to explore a city that was unfamiliar to everyone in my group. In New York, a few of us had already been to the city, but in Sydney, none of us had ever been, making the memories we made together so special.”
At Holy Angels, Wisniewski sings soprano for the AHA Chorus and Seraphima, the Academy’s select a cappella ensemble.
AHA Choral Director Lisa Marciano nominated Wisniewski, Caroline Ko, and Victoria Velasco for the performance at Carnegie Hall. Wisniewski also applied for the program in Sydney. Each of AHA’s nominees (all of whom ultimately sang in New York) then submitted applications and recordings of themselves singing. As members of the international high school choir, they are recognized as some of the world’s finest young musicians.
Music has always been a part of Wisniewski’s life. She remembers learning songs in pre-K, and continuing to sing them when she got home. She has been playing piano since she was five, and composes her own music.
Popular vocalists provided early inspiration for Wisniewski, who enjoyed singing along. That joy keeps her motivated to perform her music.
Now that Wisniewski has started her junior year at Holy Angels, she has been asked to share what she learned as a member of the international choirs. Mrs. Marciano is eager for the AHA Choir and Seraphima to draw on their peer’s experience.
Wisniewski provided a brief synopsis of her experience in Australia.
“Our conductor, Dr. Jeffery Redding, taught us valuable vocal techniques, such as how to create a rounded sound that would make us sound best in the opera house and how to blend well. He also taught us to ‘sing to inspire, not to impress,’ meaning that we should strive to inspire others with our music.”
Founded by the School Sisters of Notre Dame in 1879, the Academy of the Holy Angels is the oldest private girls’ school in Bergen County. While AHA is steeped in Catholic tradition, this prestigious school serves young women from a broad spectrum of cultural and religious backgrounds. Over time, thousands of women have passed through AHA’s portals. Many go on to study at some of the nation’s best universities, earning high-ranking positions in medicine, government, law, education, public service, business, arts, and athletics. The Academy’s current leaders continue to further the SSND mission to provide each student with the tools she needs to reach the fullness of her potential—spiritually, intellectually, socially, and physically, by offering a first-rate education in a nurturing environment where equal importance is placed on academic excellence, character development, moral integrity, and service to others.
315 HILLSIDE AVENUE, DEMAREST, NJ 07627
201.768.7822 | HOLYANGELS.ORG