200 Days in the Life of the College

Friday, October 29

Finding your voice in the a cappella tradition

By Julia Wilber ’11

The Family Weekend Concert is the most important performance of the semester for the a cappella groups on campus. Never was this truer than for Duelly Noted tonight. Many groups perform new songs and debut senior solos as well as introduce new members. We are the youngest of the a cappella groups, having been started two years ago by eight ambitious sophomores, now seniors. For the first time, we too are debuting senior solos, and the excitement is contagious.

As the audience applauds Special K’s final number, we wait in the back resisting our nerves and going through our last-minute rituals. Endless rehearsing done, we think we sound great. After trading high fives, we move down the aisle and onto the Chapel stage amid our own applause. When I turn around, I can barely believe the size of the crowd — the biggest turnout for any a cappella performance that I have ever seen. Parents, friends and siblings fill the old wooden seats. We ride this incredible energy through tonight’s set and will ride it through our musical skit on Saturday, a traditional performance in costume reserved for the night closest to Halloween.

I know I speak for many members of Duelly Noted when I say we love to sing, and that’s why we do what we do. But let’s face it — we’re also hams! It is great fun to sing in front of an audience, and Family Weekend is no exception.