Founded 1901

Royal Purple

Founded 1901

Royal Purple

Founded 1901

Royal Purple

McCarty, Helbing take their friendship to the Light Recital Hall for a voice recital

Nicole McCarty, left, and Robin Helbing practice for their upcoming recital. The two sopranos will each perform half of the show at 7:30 p.m. this Saturday in Light Recital Hall. photo by Dennis Ottosen / [email protected]

Senior sopranos perform together for first time

Seniors Nicole McCarty and Robin Helbing met four years ago during freshman orientation.

Though they’ve been friends their entire career, they will perform a voice recital together for the very first time at 7:30 p.m. Saturday.

“We’ve [both] been in other recitals, but this is Robin and Nicole’s recital, so it’s all about us, no one else,” McCarty said.

Both McCarty and Helbing have been singing since they were children. McCarty is from Johnsburg, Ill., and Helbing is from Cuba City, Wis.
Besides performing, both students also have a strong desire to teach music. McCarty said it was her high school choir director who instilled in her the passion of not only music, but teaching as well.

“I knew I wanted to be a music teacher in high school,” McCarty said. “My choir director really helped me see the importance of music, and how much fun it was. After that I couldn’t imagine doing anything else with my life.”

As sopranos McCarty and Helbing both have a very high vocal range. They both said hitting the high notes of a difficult song can take years of practice to master, as well as a toll on their voice.

At the recital, McCarty will perform pieces by George Frideric Handel, Richard Strauss and Richard Rodgers.

Helbing will perform pieces by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Johannes Brahms.

Helbing said she is looking forward to singing in front of her parents.

“They always ask me to sing at home, and … I’d rather just wait until a recital or something,” Helbing said. “So I think they’re looking forward to it, and I’m excited for them to be there.”

McCarty said she’s also excited to perform.

“Everyone’s focusing on me so it’s nerve-wracking, but it’s going to be fun,” McCarty said. “I’m excited.”

Both McCarty and Helbing cite their voice teacher, Julie Cross, as an influence.

“I want to give a special thanks to Julie Cross, [our] voice teacher,” McCarty said. “She’s been there for me since freshman year and she’s the reason I can sing how I can now.”

Helbing said Cross has had a profound impact on her life.

“She’s very good at helping us learn how to teach,” Helbing said. “How to teach ourselves, and how to teach others, which is very important because we’re going to be music teachers.”

McCarty and Helbing’s friendship has continued to grow over the years, to the point now where people associate one with the other.

“Everyone knows us as Robin and Nicole,” McCarty said.

“Yea, don’t we look alike,” Helbing added.

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Founded 1901
McCarty, Helbing take their friendship to the Light Recital Hall for a voice recital