Students were given a chance to sample A Taste of A capella on Wednesday, August 20, as part of the Navigating
Rensselaer & Beyond program. The day started off with members of
Rensselaer’s first a cappella group, the
Rensselyrics, leading the activities. The freshmen participants in this group learned “Kiss Me” by Christian rock band Sixpence Six None the Richer. The students were then divided into three groups based on their vocal ranges. The women went into a separate room to work on the tenor parts, and the men divided into separate soprano and bass sections. Although no experience was required for the event, it was clear how talented the entire group was. After a very short time, each group was singing in harmony. Once the groups were ready, they came together and ran through the song. After practicing for a while, members of the Rensselyrics demonstrated some of their songs for the students, such as “Under the Bridge” by the Red Hot Chili Peppers. James Schure ’18, who informed me how much he had learned about a capella from the program. Many students who had choir experience flourish in a cappella groups. Another student, Chris Zhang ’18, said, “I would definitely think about auditioning for the group after the program if I had time.”
After the Rensselyrics, the Rusty Pipes group came together to practice their song: “Pride” by U2. I spoke with the treasurer of the Rusty Pipes, Elijah Coley ’18. Coley is a proud tenor who knew a significant amount about the club’s inner workings. When asked if there were any rivalries between the groups, he replied, “not as much as they used to be.”
I did not have a chance to meet with the other two a cappella groups, Partial Credit and Duly Noted, but they also performed a song each. Partial Credit is the newest a cappella group on campus and Duly Noted is RPI’s all male a cappella group. The students performed Thursday night at the RPI Playhouse with the RPI Players NRB event.