Washington Alumni: Peter Westphalen

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Sophie Lindwall, Staff Reporter

Peter Westphalen, the Head Choir Director at Washington High School, graduated from Wash in ‘86. Westphalen was heavily involved in the Washington fine arts department, including choir, “Momentum,” and drama. He was also a class officer and did intramural sports, where he was on the “choir boy intramural basketball team,” which won the league, beating the swimmers team in championships.

“I knew that the only job I would ever consider was at Wash. To me, this is a dream job. Not only because it’s Wash and I love Wash, but its four blocks away from my parents, so it’s kind of like coming home,” says Westphalen.

When Westphalen  was in school there was only one show choir called Momentum.It used to be a swing style choir with more of a vocal jazz/ manhattan transfer type of music. Not a lot of kids were involved. There were no set risers, and the students built the platforms. There were only three competitions in the state, and in all three years of Westphalen being in Momentum they never lost a competition. Now Wash has three show choirs, Vivace, Celebration, and Momentum, and more kids are involved.

“There is still a surprising amount of stuff that is very similar. The fine arts program when I was in school was extremely strong and it remains to be strong. The administrative and parent support is awesome,” said Westphalen.

Westphalen’s twin daughters, Mara and Emma, are now also involved in the fine arts program at Wash, as was his now graduated son, Jonah.