Jennifer Booth - high school

Karen and I went to Notre Dame Academy together. We sat by each other all 4 years in choir. We performed in the Spring musicals together. Our junior year, we did "Carousel". Karen was Julie Jordan, and I played her best friend Carrie Pipperidge. It wasn't hard to pretend to like Karen. She was such a likeable person. We would lament about our choir director, KJ (as we "lovingly" called him). She was always smiling and laughing during practices and rehearsals. We would chat while the altos sang (and sometimes get reprimanded for being a little too chatty).
It wasn't until after high school, when I could be a little more retrospective, that I realized the kind of person Karen really was. I had been a total diva. My studying vocal performance was classical focused. I had a bit of a chip on my shoulder. I knew I was great and that's all that mattered. But Karen, she loved to sing and perform. She always was looking for ways to improve, welcoming feedback. She just wanted the opportunity to do it. I remember a solo she did at a concert, this bluesy piece, called "Back on Bass" I think. It sounded so amazing! I was jealous. Why did she get to do such a cool song? I realized, later, that her ability to sing that type of song came from her feelings, her connection to the music. She didn't just sing the notes on a page, she performed the song. She was moved by the music and thus, moved her audience. I never had that. I never had that passion for the music. I became more and more impressed by who I realized Karen was. Her desire to perform elevated her performance. Her passion for music and theater emanated throughout her performance. I became proud of her. And I looked up to her. I hoped to someday find my passion and follow it, to work on it, to feel it throughout. Needless to say, the diva-ness has dissipated. Unfortunately, I can't say as I have found my passion yet, but I will keep searching, and use Karen as my role model.