Megan Mattinson didn’t spend much time watching Glee.
The 18-year-old senior at Kamiakin High School in Kennewick only caught one episode of the popular TV show, which ended its six-season run earlier this year.
It featured a fictional Ohio teen show choir.
But, she’s seen movies about show choirs. And she’s checked out other groups in action.
So she has a frame of reference when she says that her show choir — made up of teens from across the Tri-Cities — is the real deal.
“I think what Forte! does is really special,” she said.
Mattinson has been part of the group for three years, and she’ll take part in performances May 1-2 in Richland. The show choir is performing Cliques, a pop choral concert featuring clean arrangements of songs by artists from Bruno Mars to Imagine Dragons.
The show is set in a high school, following kids from different cliques — from athletes to nerds to everyone in between — during a typical day as they struggle with schoolwork, grades, status, love and friendships. Mattinson plays a pretty, popular girl who isn’t that nice. At least in the beginning.
Other Forte! members take on other teen stereotypes.
Ammon Sintay, 18, a senior at Delta High School in Richland, plays a jock.
When the concert starts, a lot of the characters are a bit lost.
But, “by the end of the show, it resolves and it’s really uplifting. All the songs are upbeat and a lot of fun,” Sintay said.
Forte! was formed by the nonprofit Tri-City Youth Choir. The organization’s children’s choir will make a cameo during Cliques, performing a song during a flashback scene.
The concert is suitable for all ages.
Heather Hull Hart is Forte!’s artistic director, and Marlie Buriak is the choreographer.
This season, Forte! has 24 members; all auditioned for their spots.
Hart said the show choir is a positive outlet for kids, a place for them to explore and hone their talents.
And, she added, Cliques is a lot of fun. “It’s a great concert for the community. It’s entertaining,” she said.
For Mattinson and Sintay, it will be a swan song with Forte!
They’re graduating this year.
Mattinson said she’ll miss her friends and the fun, supportive atmosphere of the show choir. She plans to study music education at Central Washington University in Ellensburg.
Sintay is headed to Brigham Young University-Idaho; he’s not yet sure what he’ll study. He does know he wants to take part in a mission with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
And he knows he’ll miss Forte!
“Getting together with a bunch of other people who are really good at singing and making music is really fun. I’m wondering where I’m going to get that once I’m done. I can’t just randomly go sing with people at school,” Ammon said with a laugh. “I’m glad to be a part of this awesome thing.”
Performances of Cliques are 7 p.m. May 1 and 2 and 7 p.m. May 2 at Chief Joseph Middle School, 504 Wilson St.
Cost is $10 for adults and $8 for students and seniors. A group rate of six tickets for $40 is available. Tickets can be purchased at www.yourtcyc.com, at Tri-Cities Academy of Ballet and Music in Richland and at the door.