Three of the four University of Richmond a cappella groups will compete at the A Cappella Sing-Off in Busch Garden’s Christmas Town on Dec. 6 and support local nonprofits Literacy for Life and the Williamsburg Choral Guild.
The Sirens, The Octaves and Choeur du Roi will also compete among seven other Virginia based groups for $4,000 in cash.
“We have selected two songs from our repertoire that really showcase all of our voices,” Sirens senior Alex Tellez said. “They are our best arrangements, and we think that they will be the biggest crowd pleasers.”
This is the first time that this many Richmond a cappella groups have been to the competition, Tellez said.
Although the Sirens are competing against two other Richmond a cappella groups, Tellez said they were not focusing so much on competing against the groups as they were collaborating to support Literacy for Life.
Senior Sirens member Laura Allen said she was happy to participate with the other Richmond groups. “The Octaves are like brothers to us,” she said. “We are excited to support the other Richmond groups, but we definitely want to win.”
The Octaves president, junior Jackson Taylor, said the group had been working on adding some new and creative aspects to its songs to better capture the audience’s attention.
“This is a huge factor in performance value,” Taylor said.
Professional a cappella recording artists from Rockapella! will judge the groups, and Richmond has the largest representation from any one school, Jackson said.
“This is a testament to the caliber of a cappella groups on our campus,” Jackson said. “It’s great publicity for us and really puts Richmond on the map because of its great a cappella scene.”
The Octaves music director, junior Jared Feinman, said he had to submit a video with a couple of the group’s songs for consideration. “We are working on some new, creative things to institute in our songs to make it as best as possible,” he said.
Senior Choeur du Roi member Lucie Dufour said the group was also adding more elements to its music. “In a competition, it’s not enough to just sing,” Dufour said. “You have to move around and get attention that way.”
Choeur du Roi is also excited to be competing against other Richmond groups, Dufour said. “Although we are in different groups, we are all very supportive of one another,” she said. “We can all relate because we all do the same thing. It will be nice to see friendly faces.”
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