Meet the Girl behind the Voice: Sebi, The Incoming Broadway Star

Sophia Lopez, Features Editor

   You may have seen her around on campus, but have you heard her? Junior Sebi Reyes-Farinas has an incredibly powerful, equally lovely singing voice. Not only has she sung the national anthem at the Pines Charter Pep Rally, but also moved her audience to tears at Multicultural night with her soulful solo. Developing a voice and career is no easy task. What does it take to hone such incredible talent? How do you maximize its potential? Keep reading. 

  • What are your abilities? 

   “Ever since I was little, singing has been a thing for me that has been just constant. I took some dance lessons and I tapped into acting, but not as much as singing. Singing was my strong stability, and has been for the past couple years of my middle and high school career. It’s been through the training by my director, Mrs. Sanford; she really allowed us to utilize emotional recall and things that don’t allow you to be just an “actor”  but a true one.” 

 

  • What do you like most about them? How is this tied to Charter?

   “Pines Charter is not necessarily known as a performing arts school, and I could’ve gone another route of going to another school that indulges in the arts. I really just wanted to be in a normal school where I felt normal, and I didn’t feel too pressured being in the industry; it’s really tough to get into, stay in, which is why many artists utilize other solutions to make themselves feel better. My favorite thing about my abilities is to take what I have and make it something good. A lot of things that not only myself, but our Drama Program and Chorus Club especially have been able to do. Using the resources that we have, and creating performances that touch people, it’s  super amazing and provokes reflection. We have so many talented people that I’ve had the fortunate opportunity to come in contact with; I feel like we really have a strong group of artists. In the end, Charter enables me to utilize my abilities.”

 

  • What activities/extracurriculars are you involved in that have to do with your abilities? 

“I’m the Secretary and Historian for the Chorus Club. For Drama Club, I’m the Event Manager. In school, I also have Dance Marathon where we essentially raise money for kids who have medical disparities, through interactive fundraisers with the school like Movie Nights, Jag-A-Thon, and carwashes. These allow me to step aside from just singing and also tap into my philanthropic side. While I do love singing, I love singing for a cause. For me, I’ve done the Marlins Game Stadium that works in liaison with the YMCA; such a great experience. I’ve always just donated my time, and what people get wrong is that I don’t do the things that I do for recognition or fame, I do it because I have a genuine passion for philanthropy, for school itself, and for singing/acting/dancing. For that, I do the best of my ability to work with others; my journey has not just been me by myself, it’s been a collective initiative with various mentors, peers, my friends, my family, and those who have always supported me. I’ve utilized the resources that I have to make an impact not only in the performing arts, but in philanthropy and school.”

 

  • How is singing involved in your daily routine?

“After I wake up, I usually turn on some music that inspires me whether that’s my favorite artist Ariana Grande, or something new and popular. Using music to empower me, especially in high school, where there’s so many things that we have to stress and worry about both in school and outside of school is great. Living our highschool experience for 4 years feels so long and so short. Music really helps with that, with stress according to multiple studies, as well as an outlet for people to escape. Music is such an important part of my life and other people’s lives, it touches people and allows them to express emotions without saying anything. 

When you’re a singer, there are some things you can and can’t do, like screaming. It grants me the opportunity to conserve my voice, and pushes me to eat healthy and work out. Singing and dancing really help with working out my body, my vocal cords, and my mind.”

Living our highschool experience for 4 years feels so long and so short. Music really helps with that, with stress according to multiple studies, as well as an outlet for people to escape.”

— Sebi Reyes-Farinas


  • Who do you withdraw inspiration from?

“I love Ariana Grande. I think she’s amazing as a person and her singing is impeccable. Another person that has always stood out to me in terms of her career is Josephine Baker, whom I did a project about in middle school. Not only was it extremely racially uneven at that time, but there was always constant prejudice against her. During this, she was able to persevere and use the resources she had to make a living for herself. She was mostly famous for her banana skirt and the Rainbow Tribe. Her group of 12 adopted children, all different races and ethnicities, from over the world. She tried to raise them in a society where people were calling her crazy, that she would never succeed in this industry, but she did. She always valued togetherness and that everyone knew their worth; I really do look up to her. 

   There’s a quote by Meryl Streep that goes “When you’re acting, the person you are trying to portray should be a different version of yourself.” That really spoke to me in many ways, especially in this year, when I do sing, even if it’s not a Broadway song, I always tried to invoke some sort of emotion because with things such as the national anthem for example, it really brings a lot of emotion to certain people. Because it allows them to recall certain memories that they have had in their life, and I believe that that is a huge power of singing and the dramatic arts because it grants a connection. That’s why we have favorite artists. We don’t realize the magnitude of music to us, and the amount of time we spend listening to music in the day.

   There have also been some key people who have shaped my life, it’s hard to identify myself with people I don’t know. I think the most inspiring people to me are the people who have actually given me advice and have led me to this point in my career. That being some middle school teachers like Ms. Raymond and Ms. Renolds, and Ms. Sanford and Ms. Taylor for both Drama and Chorus this year. They’ve helped me enhance my singing, but also my purpose. I can use singing to make a change, and not just be another great singer, but be a great singer who can utilize their voice to make an impact on the world.

I can use singing to make a change, and not just be another great singer, but be a great singer who can utilize their voice to make an impact on the world. ”

— Sebi Reyes-Farinas

 

  1. Where do you plan on doing with your talents? Any future aspirations, destinations?

“Michigan University has the number one theater program, so hopefully I’ll be participating there soon. This year, I’ve really tapped into dancing and acting as well because I do want to be on Broadway eventually. That’s the goal.”