A cappella groups sing for charity

Soundbytes, a co-ed group, stole the show with its original arrangements. (credit: Jessica Sochol/) Soundbytes, a co-ed group, stole the show with its original arrangements. (credit: Jessica Sochol/)

“Music is Alive: The Fourth Annual A CaPittsburgh Project,” a charity concert put on every year by Carnegie Mellon’s a cappella groups, was held in Rangos Hall this past Saturday, featuring performances by Counterpoint, Treblemakers, Soundbytes, The Originals, Joyful Noise, and Deewane. The event raises funds for music-related programs in the Pittsburgh area each year. Proceeds of this year’s A CaPittsburgh will benefit the Tickets for Kids Foundation, which provides opportunities for underprivileged children to experience cultural activities and events in the area.

Counterpoint, Carnegie Mellon’s only all-women a cappella group, hosts the event each year. The group kicked off the night with a dreamy rendition of the well-known pop song “Mr. Sandman.” The group performed with solid harmonies and cute choreography, starting the show off on the right foot. Treblemakers, the newest co-ed group on campus and one of the largest groups of the night, performed next. Their best song was an energetic and passionate rendition of “Breakeven” by The Script with an excellent solo performance.

The next two groups, Soundbytes and The Originals, definitely stole the show. Soundbytes, a co-ed group that writes its own arrangements, was engaging and energetic throughout its performance. The group closed its set with “Roxanne” by The Police, featuring an outstanding solo performance and the most energy displayed by any group all night.

The Originals, one of Carnegie Mellon’s all-male groups, kept the energy up with their set, displaying loads of personality and enthusiasm. They sang about heartbreak and failed relationships, successfully winning over the hearts of the audience. They closed their performance with Queen’s “Somebody to Love”; when the soloist was standing there begging the audience for someone to love, it was hard to imagine he’d be alone for long.

After a short intermission, the event continued with Joyful Noise, a Christian co-ed group, and Deewane, a South Asian male group. Joyful Noise introduced each song individually, which caused its performance to drag despite its strong vocals and made some audience members uncomfortable. Deewane, which is Hindi for “madly in love,” put on an engaging show with plenty of choreography. The group’s unique mixture of modern and traditional music and dance was extremely entertaining, and the audience seemed to love every minute of it. Deewane put on a high-energy performance and closed with a great dance number that included small lifting stunts.

Counterpoint closed out the night with nice renditions of “I Follow Rivers” by Lykke Li, “God Only Knows” by The Beach Boys, and “Like a Prayer” by Madonna. All three of these songs featured clean harmonies and were well received by the audience.

Overall, the event was very successful and attendance was high. Every seat in Rangos was filled, and many people had to sit or stand around the edges and back of the room. A mixture of students, parents, and alumni, the audience was energetic and thoroughly enjoyed the show. After hearing all six of the a cappella groups, it’s easy to understand why A CaPittsburgh is such a big event each year, showcasing the talent of Carnegie Mellon’s a cappella groups and raising money for a good cause.