Thursday, June 4, 2015

Concert Review: Game Of Tones

Haven't been to many school performances during my university life, but this one blew my expectations. It may only have been the second time that I attended such an event, and I wish that I have seen more... Let's review the UBC A Capella Concert.

Brace yourselves, catchy tunes are coming

April 12th, 2014

My cousin invited her family, her friends, my other cousin, and myself to watch the last concert she'll partake, as she has recently graduated (congratulations)! The show was called "Game of Tones," which is a playoff of the popular series "Game of Thrones" - university students are just full of puns.

There were five groups in total: Unaccompanied Minors, Fermata UBC, UBCO Beats, Undeclared Majors, and Choral Reef. My cousin was part of Undeclared Majors, but there were a few names that I saw that caught my attention, including one that attended my high school (he's part of Unaccompanied Minors).

To begin the show, Undeclared Majors sang their own rendition of "Game of Thrones'" theme song, adding a unique twist to the end just to suit their style (that was a nice touch!) Not knowing what to expect for the remainder of the show, I was delighted with what I manage to capture on my handheld camcorder (never thought I would have used that word). The storyline was a bit difficult to follow, but the narrator was hilarious! He kept the crowd going, and amped up the audience to see what comes next.

First to perform were Choral Reef, providing both old and new hits that were impressive:

Off rhythm at times, but nonetheless a classic

Just wait for the surprise in this one

Next onstage was Unaccompanied Minors, and I must say that they were the highlight of the show. They had incredible solos in their part, making me fall in love with all of these songs once again. 

The ensemble

Elvis can't even compare

Fitting moves for such a campy song

One word: wow

As the excitement continued, Undeclared Majors were next, only having two songs to sing (one was incredibly long, with the duration of 12 minutes!) My cousin had a solo in the long song (a mash up of Ed Sheeran and the Hobbit, I believe), and I decided to take a snap shot:

Shining moment

One of my favourite performances had to be everyone's favourite song by Wham! Not only is it the catchiest of songs, they also added some fun moves that made me want to get on that stage and join them... I retained myself:

What a jolly good time

It's exciting to see new additions of UBC A Capella, as it shows a great interest within the original set. The following are groups I have seen for the first time, starting off with the all-female group, Fermata UBC. Their part was well-put, especially their mashups. I would have liked to see more fast paced songs, but these songs shined brilliantly on their own:

Solid arrangement for these two song put together

Mesmerizing, this piece

Hailing from the Okanagan, UBCO Beats was the smallest of the groups, but one of the more entertaining parts of the show. With the smallest set, they certainly created a big impact to the audience. The only piece I managed to get on film was this one down below, and I must say, it was hard to stay silent when the boy kept saying "Hot Damn:"

Like butter melting on toast

Undeclared Majors came back on the stage to perform two more songs, one being a tribute to Lana Del Rey. Not the biggest fan of hers, but they managed to make it their own with this medley:

Can you name all of the songs?

To finish off the night, all of the choirs in Westeros came together to perform a song that always seems to include a choir: Bohemian Rhapsody. Not only was it overwhelming due to the astonishing amount of people they had to fit on that stage, but every note was on key. I don't know how they did it, but it was amazing. Here's a closeup of my cousin in the crowd:

Right in the centre of the stage

Camera couldn't even fit everyone in the picture!

You can tell how much dedication these students put into their singing, and it's astonishing to know that arrangement includes the rhythm, the beat makers, and the harmonizing all took what I believe to be about four months to prepare this piece. If I am invited to attend another show, for sure I'd love to come back and see what else UBC A Capella has in store. Overall, I had the most pleasant time seeing a school full of such talented people.

Rating: 5 out of 5

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