News and Notices
It was precisely a century ago that the Yale Whiffenpoofs
first banded together to sing of poor little lambs who had lost
their way. Since that fateful night at Mory’s Temple Bar, choral
groups, a cappella or otherwise, have grown to become nationwide
high school and college staples, their allure ebbing and flowing,
as dictated by the cultural zeitgeist. Popularity reached a peak
during the Eisenhower era, when the appeal of the Hi-Lo’s alongside
that foursome of Fours—Lads, Preps, Freshmen, Aces—caused
clean-cut, brush-cut vocal groups to pop up on campuses
coast-to-coast. The phenomenon slumped in the 1960s, when such
sweet harmonies fell out of favor, trumped by folk songs, garage
rock and flower power. Hit recordings by the Persuasions, the
Manhattan Transfer, Bobby McFerrin, and the Nylons brought renewed
interest in the 1980s, followed by another slowdown in mainstream
recognition as the new millennium dawned.
Roger Sherman will pick up the conductor’s baton for the
first time in many years next Tuesday, when he begins rehearsals as
the new director of the Orcas Choral Society. However, he brings a
lifelong practice of making music with him.
In spite of his busy schedule, he says he welcomes the chance to
direct the Orcas Choral Society. “I feel very fortunate for the
opportunity to make music with such talented and interested
people”, he says. “I love choral music; there’s nothing like it in
the whole world.” Sherman appreciates that singing is communal
spiritualism, somewhat different from individual spiritualism. “All
singing is spiritual in nature.
By Mary Shinn
September 7, 2010 at 9:44 pm
Inspired by the hit TV show “Glee,” a group of ASU students will
be heading back to high school this semester to start a show choir.
GLEEders, a group of ASU mentors, will be advising three show
choir groups of students from Corona Del Sol High School and middle
school students from the Tempe area, said Amanda Nguyen, the
founder of GLEEders and a junior at ASU.
The show choirs will perform popular songs featured on “Glee”
with choreography, including songs like “Defying Gravity” from
Wicked, a play, and “Rehab” by singer Rihanna, Nguyen said.
The high school women’s and mixed choir groups will start
rehearsing at Corona Wednesday, and the mixed middle school choir
will hold auditions on Friday, she said.
Each choir consists of about 30 people, and a team of about
15 ASU students sponsored by Barrett, the Honors College, will
coach all three of them, Nguyen said.
Helping to direct a show choir last year at Pueblo Middle
School, where Nguyen started singing in choir as an eighth grader,
provided a background for her to found the mentorship program, she