haveners

Villanova’s 2019 Family Weekend started off on a high note, literally, with the semester debut of Villanova’s eight a Cappella groups. The Villanova Room was packed on Friday night with family and friends as the groups joined together in a showcase, the first for the 27 new members, or so called “babies,” of these groups. However, the newcomers anticipated the event with excitement rather than anxiety. 

“I’m really excited to see how all the songs we are putting practice into turn out,” Rhys Davies, a new member of The Spires said. “We have a really good lineup, so I think they have the potential to wow any audience we perform in front of.” 

The Supernovas, one of three co-ed groups, began the night with the songs “Honeymoon Avenue” by Ariana Grande and “Wild Things” by Alessia Cara, debuting their new member Madeline Wujek with the first solo. Next up was Measure Up, the newest group on campus, performing “Bills, Bills, Bills” by Destiny’s Child and “If I Ever Fall (Down) in Love” by Shai. The following performance from Vocal Minorities, an all male group, was one of the more memorable of the evening, met with applause both before and after their performance. 

Starting with “Insomniac” by Billy Pilgrim, Vocal Minorities ensured not a single soul was sleeping in The Villanova Room. The blending of sound and volume between the soloists and ensemble was well executed, something hard to achieve within only three weeks of rehearsals, especially with the addition of new members. Furthermore, soloists Liam McCaffery and Jordan Pauls harmonized beautifully in their first song of the evening. Overall, the enthusiasm Vocal Minorities brought to their performance demonstrated the positivity of the group as a whole.

Next in the line up was The Haveners, performing “Sweet Little Unforgettable Thing” by Bea Miller and “Good Kisser” by Lake Street Drive. The catchy refrain of “Tell ‘em I’m a good kisser” was perfectly sung by soloist Jillian Cetrulo whose high belt warranted several “woos” from the audience. This impassioned performance was succeeded by the beatboxing beast Anthony Finocchiaro of Minor Problem, whose skill shined through during both “Sweet but Psycho” by Ava Max and “I Want You Back” by The Jackson Five. 

Sixth in line for the evening was The Sirens, the final all-female group of the night, whose renditions of “Drop the Game” by Flume and Chet Faker and “Killing Me Softly with His Song” by Fugees showed off the talent of all the seniors of the group — a wonderful tribute to the time and talent they have bestowed on the group. Additionally, president of The Sirens, Taylor Lange, truly embodied the siren spirit with her spectacular solo during the bridge of the Fugee classic. 

Nothing But Treble (NBT) took the stage next with Jess Glynre’s “Broken” and “What Now” by Rhianna. This was by far the stand out song of the evening, performed in duet by Azzeiza Beadle and Sabrina Guiao. Azzeiza crushed her solo with a ravishing riff that was greeted with thunderous applause. Overall, the group brought great energy to their program. Finally, the Spires performed an a Cappella themed set including the songs “Good Old A Cappella” by The Nylons and “Changes” by Rockapella. This all-male group grabbed the audience’s attention with comedic choreography as “the Spires broke it down.” 

This event was a great kick-off to the festivities of the weekend, as well as for what seems to be the start of an absolutely “aca-awesome” year for Villanova’s eight a Cappella groups. 

“I’m super excited for all of our events in the future because I know we’re going to kill it,” Davies said. “Everyone should come out and hear all the groups because they are all so talented.” The next performance will be “SpOlooza,” a Special Olympics event, on Friday, October 4th in The Villanova Room. Also, for all those Pitch Perfect fans out there, look out for more information about a Cappella Palooza, the highly anticipated second semester event featuring the eight groups in all their choreographed glory.