The fifth graders from Staten Island closed out the Academy Awards and totally stole the show!
Need a reason to oppose school budget cuts that slash art and music programs? How about last night's Academy Awards performance from Staten Island, New York's P.S. 22 chorus. The inspiring fifth graders closed out the show with a heartwarming rendition of the classic song "Over the Rainbow"—and got a standing ovation from the A-list crowd.
The chorus' director, Gregg Breinberg, told the New York Daily News the performance is his proudest moment. "I'm flying so high right now. It was everything we hoped and then some. I was worried that after they announced Best Picture everyone would start walking out, but that audience really gave the kids the respect they deserve. Everyone came up afterward and said we stole the show."
Ten-year-old Azaria Chamorro shared her teacher's enthusiasm. "Oh my gosh, it was really crazy," she said. "When we ended on the final note, I started jumping up and down and crying. I cried for a long, long time I was so happy." Chamorro also got to hold an Oscar and meet Best Actress winner Natalie Portman.