John Burlace had been sitting on big news for almost a week.
ABC 7 producers called the director of Wheaton Warrenville South High School's Classics show choir to invite the national champions to tape a “Windy City Live” segment this weekend — and asked him to keep it quiet for a few days.
Now, the cat's out of the bag. The choir will be singing to none other than actress Jane Lynch, star of the TV hit “Glee.”
On the show, Lynch plays a curmudgeonly cheerleading coach who wants nothing more than to dismantle the glee club.
But coach Sue Sylvester never listened to the likes of the Classics, winners of the 2011 FAME Show Choir Championship Series.
Burlace can take 20 students — 10 boys and 10 girls — from the 52-member show choir. They'll sing and dance to the Beatles song “I Saw Her Standing There.”
The Lemont High School cheerleading squad, winners of three IHSA state championships, also will appear on the segment.
Lynch, a native of South suburban Dolton, is in town to promote her new book, “Happy Accidents” (Voice, $25.99).
Burlace said he's read some of it, and thinks the Emmy-winning actress is a positive role model for students. “She writes some incredible stuff in her book about making good life choices,” he said. “(Her view about) not turning down opportunities because you never know where they're going to lead is in line with my teaching philosophy.”
The show tapes at 11:30 a.m. Sunday at ABC 7's State Street studio. This edition of “Windy City Live”, with Val Warner and Ryan Chiaverini, airs at 9 a.m. Monday, October 10, on Channel 7.
The Classics learned “I Saw Her Standing There” at their retreat in August, and plan to perform it at the group's big fundraising show in April, Burlace said.
But performing it on the same stage as Lynch watches will be a twist. “We'll try to engage her a little bit in our performance,” Burlace said.
Some of his students are “Glee” fans, others not so much, but they all have strong opinions about the show, Burlace said.
“It's a mixed bag,” he said. “Some of them really love it, and some are quick to point out how different it is from real life.”Copyright © 2013 Paddock Publications, Inc. All rights reserved.