Virtual A Cappella Fest evokes a multitude of emotions



The Virtual A Cappella Fest featured many performers and groups. The songs were beautifully performed and evoked a multitude of emotions.

Heartfelt performances, aesthetic outfits, intriguing visuals and soaring solos. Singing groups incorporated all of these elements into their performances at the 2021 virtual A Cappella Fest.

The high school’s vocal ensembles Perfect Pitch, Glee Club, Note-A-Fy, Testostatones and A Cappella Choir performed over Zoom on March 19 for the A Cappella Fest. The show was hosted by students from Needs Improvment and evoked a multitude of emotions.

The night opened with a stunning performance from the always-cool Perfect Pitch. They kicked off with an eerie and gothic twist on “The Love Club” by Lorde. Spiders, black lipstick and fishnet sleeves were prominent, and their voices floated along with the wind. Senior Frances Smith was a main soloist, and her vocals, makeup, hair and facial expressions all made my chest flutter with intrigue.

The mood of the room shifted immediately as Perfect Pitch broke into the flowing beats of “Wait a Minute!” by Willow Smith. The screen seamlessly transitioned from the previously dark ambiance to a more relaxed sci-fi aesthetic. Space buns, hoop earrings and tinted sunglasses dominated. The lyrics and voices lifted me to outer space and junior Sofia Velinzon’s voice soared through the atmosphere like a comet.

The Glee Club delivered two equally uplifting and heartfelt performances. They opened with an optimistic and sincere rendition of “Keep Holding On” by Avril Lavigne, which was lit up with bright pastels and beautiful voices. Freshman Alexandra Oveido’s opened the song skillfully, her distinctively sweet and musical voice making me smile. Sophomore Daphna Steiner Tomer followed with deeper, melodious verses, filling the Zoom with her calming and earnest presence.

Glee Club’s final and most poignant performance was “You Will Be Found” from the musical “Dear Evan Hansen.” Sophomores Charlie Perdue and Jackson Daley opened the song with vulnerable and honest verses that drew listeners in. Daley’s vibrato was skillfully restorative and resonant. The finale was expertly carried out by the illustrious senior Alexandra Murray, her powerfully exhilarating voice soaring far above. Her sensational vocals brought together a truly uplifting and rejuvenating performance by the Glee Club.

Note-A-Fy stole the show with innovative and breathtaking performances, creating elaborate and well-edited videos to accompany their vocal arrangements. “You Know I’m No Good” by Amy Winehouse began with senior Lucy Cahill descending down the stairs, an uncanny imitation of Winehouse’s iconic beehive hair and thick winged eyeliner. Her jazzy and soulful voice ached with passion, flowing into sophomore Sera Gangadharan’s softly hypnotic tones. Gangadharan’s nostalgic verses were made possible by superb backing vocals and beatboxing.

The group followed this with an equally stunning performance of “Settle Down” by Kimbra. Sophomore Katya Sacharow opened the video with an entrancing aesthetic, using visuals to create an elegantly chilling atmosphere. But I almost stopped breathing when senior Amita Polumbaum followed, her honeyed voice so sweet on the ears I could listen forever.

However, I believe the people most responsible for these seamless performances were the video editors. “You Know I’m No Good” and “Settle Down” were masterfully edited by sophomores Jacquovia Higgs and Aliana Dellarocco, respectively. Pure talent and emotion from the singers were beautifully showcased in creative video adaptations. The performance left me in awe and rattled in the best possible way.

A Cappella Choir was the final act, and they did not disappoint. They began with a sobering adaptation of Gotye’s “Somebody That I Used to Know.” This somber rendition invoked resentment of lost love and past wounds. The reliably flawless sophomore James Leslie delivered a poignant solo and an anguished take on the lyrics. The night ended on a beautifully hopeful note, a cheery upturn after previous acts. A Cappella Choir performed “I Can See Clearly Now” by Johnny Nash, a beautiful spin on a timeless classic. The performance was uplifting and evocative of spring and new opportunities.

The concert ended with the lyric, “It’s going to be a bright, bright, sun-shiny day.” Reflective of this sentiment, as the days get warmer and vaccination rates rise, hopefully, students at the high school will begin to see a way forward.