By Kat Kaderabek
A competitive group of freshmen audition every year for the two Catholic University a cappella groups, Take Note and Redline. They are all a bit nervous to be performing a pop song in front of the most seasoned members of their perspective groups. Their fate was held in number two pencils. After a round of callbacks, the select few freshmen were notified they had been accepted into the world of collegiate a cappella.
For the audition itself, the number of people accepted varies from year to year, depending on how many seniors graduated the previous year. Freshmen usually replace the graduated members and those accepted into CUA’s Redline and Take Note a cappella groups were chosen because they will bring fire, energy, and laughter to their group. If you’ve seen “Pitch Perfect,” then you know that a cappella takes hours of practice and great teamwork skills. This passionate group of individuals are committed to their music and performances. For example, Take Note meets twice a week, every Sunday and Wednesday.
The freshmen who do audition aren’t afraid to show their enthusiasm, “I’m most excited just to be a part of this group because I’ve never done anything like this before,” said Anthony Greico, a new member of Take Note. Redline and Take Note give students the opportunity to explore musical interests that are sometimes pushed to the side.
“I have been wanting to do something real and concrete with my voice for about as long as I can remember,” said Mike Staresinic, another Take Note freshman who has no previous a cappella experience. Before Take Note, Staresinic had only participated in coffee house performances and talent shows with his youth group.
Passion drives a great performer, and the most recent recruits in Take Note and Redline are no exception.
“I truly wanted nothing more than to have the opportunity to sing, and to be able to do it with a group as talented as Redline is surreal,” explains Connor Gerrity, who participated in years of musicals, show choirs, and middle school a cappella groups prior to his Redline career.
“The end product is always what inspires me to perform,” said Chris Carey, a new Take Note member. “I can’t wait until it is time to present the hard work, and the understanding that the art was felt by someone or anyone is very special to me as a performer.”
While there are deep, personal stories behind every performer’s motivation, there is also a special artist who first introduced them to great music. Carey explained his favorite musician is Dean Martin, “because he was so funny and a very complex but talented man.”
Curran also wishes to channel another classic artist, saying, “If I could be any famous musician, I would love to be Elvis Presley back in the 1950s. In a sense, he revolutionized music.” And as these newest additions to CUA’s a cappella groups begin their careers as singers, they offer their own gifts and talents that could one day revolutionize music.
Catherine O’Grady contributed to this article.