Building a Legacy: Attache Alumni Dinner Theater

originally published Spring 2018

The Attaché Alumni Dinner Theater is the show choir’s biggest annual fundraiser. Each year, past members gather to reminisce of their days singing and dancing together. But this year’s event was extra special because it marked 25 years of Attaché under directors David and Mary Fehr.

The 10th Annual Attaché Alumni Dinner Theater was held Saturday, January 27, at Mississippi College. The evening included a dinner, silent auction, performances from Attaché alumni, and a special preview of Attaché Show Choir’s 2018 competition set. In attendance were Attaché and Clinton High School alumni, Attaché parents and family, and Clintonians who have supported the show choir over its 38 years.

Brittany Wagner, athletic academic counselor, life coach, and star of Netflix’s “Last Chance U,” was the emcee for the evening. Wagner, a 1996 CHS graduate and alumna, shared stories about her time in the show choir and joked about her role as “the dancer.”

“Attaché taught me teamwork, discipline, and confidence,” said Wagner.

She says she still remembers Mr. Fehr telling her, “Don’t be sorry; be good”—a mantra she now uses.

Attaché alumni Shelly Fairchild, Heath Calvert, and Tiffany Eaves Schlesinger performed during the evening.

Heath Calvert, 1997 CHS alumnus, has performed in four Broadway musicals, including Amélie and Hair. He became an Attaché member at the age of 13, making him one of its youngest members. Calvert wowed guests as he sang a version of Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” and later, “This is the Moment,” which earned him a standing ovation.

“I would not be doing this with my life if my parents had not discovered Attaché,” Heath said.

Calvert jokingly credited his “thick skin” to Mr. Fehr, but praised the director’s “work ethic, passion, and drive.”

Tiffany Eaves Schlesinger, a 1994 CHS alum who also sang during the evening, has been in several musicals.

“Your dedication is unlike anything I’ve seen,” Schlesinger told the Fehrs. “What you taught us we have all used wherever we are.”

Shelly Fairchild, a 1995 CHS alum, just released her fourth country album. She’s sung with country stars like Martina McBride and Keith Urban and has performed multiple times at the Grand Ole Opry. She sang two of her original songs, “Mississippi Turnpike,” accompanied by Steven Nixon, and later, “Why Can’t We Carry Each Other,” with Calvert and Schlesinger backing her up.

Fairchild and Calvert both shared that they are grateful that students have a safe space like Attaché to express themselves.

“I would be completely lost without music. Thank you for helping us hone our skills as musicians,” Fairchild told the Fehrs.

The night of praise for the Fehrs was particularly timely. On Thursday, January 25, David and Mary Fehr were given the 2018 “Outstanding Citizen of the Year” award by the Clinton Chamber of Commerce. The CCC also named the Clinton Public School District “Large Business of the Year” for 2018.

At the end of the night, Attaché Show Choir showcased their 2018 competition set—The Beatles. The performance had guests on their feet and showed why this team is nationally-ranked.

Since 1992, Attaché has won 74 grand championships and has hosted the Show Choir Nationals for 16 years straight.

-Abigail Walker

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A freelance writer from the Deep South with a love of reading, writing, dramatic storytelling, indie music, and her corgi pup.

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