MERCERVILLE — South Gallia High School continues to increase school pride with the composition of a new alma mater, “Hail South Gallia.”
Assistant Principal Jacob Attar wrote lyrics for the song that Music Teacher Jeff Hilbert arranged.
“I wanted to promote school pride and give the students and staff something they could rally behind,” said Attar.
The tune is a hymn written by Arthur Mann in 1881. According to Hilbert, hymns are commonly used as the basis for alma maters.
“I took the lyrics and I literally went through 500 hymns with the phrasing on it, to see if the phrasing would fit. Once I picked out the six or eight hymns I took my wife upstairs to our piano and said play me these hymns, and as soon as we got to that one we said that is it, it sounds just like an alma mater,” said Hilbert. “That’s not something you hear everyday, usually there is an alma mater that’s been around forever.”
The new song was debuted at a rebel basketball game on Jan. 27 and will be a part of a new tradition at South Gallia. After home games students and fans will gather on the court and sing the alma mater.
“The first night we did it and gathered up all the kids on one end of the court it was a really good moment, I had a bunch of feedback from the parents that said it was awesome,” said Hilbert. “It’s not really a (pep) tune, it’s more of a settled reflection on the values that your school has, which is why I think Mr. Shamblin and Mr. Attar are trying to go back and establish all these traditions so that well have some point of reference to come from.”
The new alma mater is part of an ongoing effort to enhance school leadership and pride in the South Gallia Vision 20/20 Strategic Plan.
“We are very excited about the establishment of the new official song for South Gallia High School, ‘Hail South Gallia’,” said Shamblin. “The Alma mater testifies to the dedication, loyalty, and fondness of years past, present, and future for our school and our community.”
Reach Morgan McKinniss at 740-446-2342 ext 2108.