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Wisconsin Singers

The University of Wisconsin-Madison's professional entertainment company -- the Wisconsin Singers -- will perform Saturday in Portage during the group's 50th year.

WISCONSIN SINGERS/Contributed

Celebrating the group’s 50th year, the Wisconsin Singers will perform at Portage High School at 7 p.m. Saturday.

University of Wisconsin-Madison’s professional entertainment company is coming to Portage for the fifth time in six years. The performance will raise money for the high school’s choral department.

Profits from the performances have helped the department in many ways, Choral Director Holly Atkinson said.

“Sometimes the money is used for sheet music, and other times it’s used for accompaniments for concerts. Sometimes it’s used for dry cleaning of uniforms or dresses and shirts, and sometimes for wireless microphones,” she said.

“It really depends on need, and how much is available for spending.”

Atkinson is particularly excited about this year’s Wisconsin Singers performance because of choreographer Michael Stanek, who has worked with the high school’s swing choir for the past two years and this year is also working for the Wisconsin Singers.

“He’s amazing,” Atkinson said. “But the show is always great — high energy, and incredibly entertaining.”

The middle school swing choir will open for the high school swing choir, which in turn opens for the Wisconsin Singers. Both of the school bands will perform two songs each.

“That’s exciting for all of them because they can really show their talents and what they’ve done (this year),” Atkinson said.

Students from the choirs will also participate in a workshop led by the Wisconsin Singers.

“Can’t Stop Dancin’!” — this year’s Wisconsin Singers show — features more than 40 American pop songs from the past five decades. Songs include selections from Aretha Franklin, Duke Ellington, KISS, Elton John, Pentatonix, the Beatles and Taylor Swift, the company said in a news release. Multiple genres will be represented, such as classic rock, Top 40 hits, smooth jazz and Broadway hits.

Spring choir concert

The high school’s spring choir concert is 7 p.m. Thursday, two days before the Wisconsin Singers performance. Both shows will be in the school’s auditorium.

The school’s choir concert is free and open to the public, involving more than 215 Portage students.

“That’s about 25 percent of the school,” Atkinson said.

Students in the school’s concert Thursday will perform songs from “The Greatest Showman,” the movie about P.T. Barnum, as well as a variety of other musical theater and jazz pieces.

Follow Noah Vernau on Twitter @NoahVernau

Portage Daily Register reporter