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Malden High’s 82nd Annual Junior Varieties show was a ‘MARVEL-ous’ success

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Class of 2023’s signature event entertained big audiences in Jenkins Auditorium this past weekend

  When they look back on their school years, many Malden High alumni recall the annual Junior Varieties show as one of their fondest memories. Whether they participated directly in the show or took it in as part of the audience, the performances of their classmates stay with them for years to come.

  For the 82nd year, one of the longest-running, continuous high school variety shows in the nation did not disappoint, with two well-attended shows on Friday and Saturday evenings jam-packed with an eclectic mix of talent. The planning and delivery of the performances went so well that even “Loki” could not deter the “MARVEL-ous” success of the Class of 2023’s, whose theme was centered on the Marvel comics and characters. The show featured a mix of vocalists – both solos and duets – along with dance troupes and soloists, pianists and the incomparable MHS Step Team.

  “It was a big success; everyone worked very hard to help make it a great weekend,” said MHS Class of 2023 Advisor Michael Lightbody, a longtime MHS Social Studies teacher and himself a 1986 MHS alumnus.

  “Junior Varieties never lets you down! The performers were incredible. The audience was excited. Mike Lightbody and Jim Valente and the junior class knocked it out of the park,” said MHS Principal Chris Mastrangelo. “It was awesome to see the auditorium filled with our students participating in an 82 year tradition at MHS.”

  The show is dubbed “Junior Varieties” because the hosts of the annual event is the “reigning” junior class at MHS, which is continually fundraising in its four years at the school, with the ultimate goal being to lessen the cost of the Senior Prom for the members of the Class of 2023. Junior Varieties is the biggest one-event fundraiser for the junior class; its revenue usually represents a substantial portion of the over $20,000 the class aims to raise in the course of its four-year drive.

  Lightbody said it was a successful night in combination with the ticket revenue and business and other local sponsors. New England Security was the major sponsor of Junior Varieties this year.


Malden High 82nd Junior Varieties performers, hosts, crew and sponsors

  This year’s performers included:

  Act One

  • Yusra Tafraoui (Vocalist, “Feeling Good” by M. Buble
  • Kiana Tse, Nashalyn Rubert and Jobbliel Nieves (Hip Hop Dance)
  • Giselle Dessert, Saniah Charles, Taisha Balan, Soleil Mathurin and Erikah Macharia (Afro-Caribbean Dance Mix)
  • Nick Ramos (Vocalist/“Die for You” – The Weekend)
  • Alyssa Littlejohn and Liam Bloom (Musicians/“A Mad Russian’s Christmas”)
  • Melissa Calixte (An Original Rap)
  • Matthew Paraliticci Castano (Musician/“Winter Wind” – Frederic Chopin)
  • Roxanne Leon (Dance/“Try a Little Tenderness” – Otis Redding)
  • Erick Rodriguez, Julie Deng, Jason Song, James Song, Regina Garza Ramirez, Rayane Santos, Nayomi Santos, Michelle Dang, Vanessa Ardai, Emmalyn Woods (Variety Dance/“We Don’t Talk About Bruno” – from “Encanto”
  • Donald Ford, Kai Gomes, Finn Sedan, Joao Bareta (Original Jazz Composition)


Act Two

  • MHS AO Step Team (Led by Myrvlyne Gilles)
  • Mindy Nguyen (Vocalist/“I Don’t Wanna Be You Anymore” – Billie Eilish
  • Alyssa Littejohn (Pianist/Drei Klavierdtucke D.946 No. 1 (Franz Schubert)
  • Mindy Nguyen and Kimberlee Smith (Duet Vocalists/“A Thousand Years” (Christina Perri)
  • Michele Dang accompanied by pianist Alyssa Littlejohn (“Stay” – Rhianna)
  • Kimberlee Smith (Vocalist/“Til Forever Falls Apart” – Ashe)
  • Juliana Luong (Lyrical Dance/“Never Dreamed You’d Leave in Summer” – James Blake)


  • Cast (Hosts): News Anchor/Aquaman (Allison Yu), Loki (Peyton Lightbody), Iron Man (Saura Rathore), Spider Man (Mac O’Brien), Live Reporter (Kyle Lee), News Sign Presenter (Ryan Li).
  • Stage, light & sound: State Director (Kiley Fray) and Liam Bloom, Jianna Downey, LKuiza Fernandez, David Flores, Alexander Goon, Noelle Hayes, Andrew Landaverde, Ryan Li and Christine Wang.
  • Sound Director (Kelly Le) with Siena Lee and Rachel Lin
  • Lighting Director (Isabella Ivy) with Nathan Nguyen and Simon Pham


  In addition to Chief Sponsor New England Security of Malden, other sponsors of the 2022 Junior Varieties were Mayor Gary Christenson (Class of 1986), City Council President Craig Spadafora, Councillor-at-Large Karen Colón Hayes, Ward 6 Councillor Stephen Winslow, Ward 8 Councillor Jadeane Sica, Comedian/Singer/Impressionist/MHS alumnus Joey Noone, Malden Trans Inc., Malden HS Alumni Association and thanks to: Todd Cole, Arlene and Joe Ceppetelli, Mayada Giha, Beth Horowitz, Jean Jones, Dan Jurkowski, Kristen Kirby, Deb Kumar, Pat Laidley, Melissa Lightbody, Sean Lightbody, Chris Mastrangelo, Jeanne Marquardo, Paul Marques, Erin O’Brien Mazza, Sammi Nie, Barbara Scibelli, Judie Sullivan, Jim Valente and Shannon Votaw.

Senior Yusra Tafraoui sings “Feeling Good” by Michael Buble.
MHS Principal Chris Mastrangelo and Peyton Lightbody play the supervillains of the show.
Mindy Nguyen and Kimberlee Smith sing “A Thousand Years” by Christina Perri as a duet.
Matthew Paraliticci Castano plays “Winter Wind” by Frederic Chopin on the piano.
Malden High senior Melissa Calixte performs an original rap during MHS’ 82nd Annual Junior Varieties show last weekend. (Advocate Photo/Henry Huang)
Senior Nick Ramos sings “Die For You” by hip-hop star, The Weekend.

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