It’s only two weeks into school, and Ridgewood High School’s a capella program is already up and running. This week marks the start of a year filled with a great deal of singing for both the Acabellas and the Maroon Men. Tuesday September 15 was the first day of auditions for the school’s co-curricular ensembles: the Maroon Men and the Acabellas, the Ridgewood Voices, and the Carolers.
Following an informational meeting on Thursday September 10, sign-up sheets for both a capella groups were almost instantly filled with names of people auditioning for the groups. Over 100 students signed up to audition for these co-curricular ensembles. Students from any of the music programs at RHS were encouraged to go out for these groups.
Choir director Steven Bourque held auditions for the four groups during lunch and after school on September 15 and 16. For the audition, students had to prepare one song, be able to sight read a piece of music that they would have thirty seconds to look over, and then sing a song of their choice. After auditions, Mr. Bourque will select about 20 girls and 20 boys to go to the callbacks for these groups.
On Thursday September 17, current members of the Acabellas (Alex Alberta, Allison Paleno, Aria Berryman, Brianna Patek, Caitlin-Crane Moscowitz, Catherine Marra, Kathryn Kearney, Katie Van Buskirk, Olivia Saporito, and Patricia Joseph) gathered to have their first meeting of the year, discussing auditions, callbacks, and upcoming events. The Acabellas said goodbye to Aidan Trevisan, Katie Allard, Katy Feldhahn, Nina Farley, and Julia Goodgold in June, but the group is excited to welcome new members who will provide a different sound.
On Sunday September 20, current members of the Maroon Men (Kenny-Crane Moscowitz, Michael Crowe, Spencer Gonzalez, James Mabli, Jack Bird, Aaqib Hassan, and Morgan Mastrangelo) met to discuss similar ideas that the Acabellas had addressed in their meeting on Thursday. Current members of the Maroon Men were sad to see more than half of their members graduate, including Troy Frey, Jeff Lampiasi, Gabriel Voorhees-Allen, George Hajjar, Max Neuman, Daniel Brennan, Hayes Walsh, Cameron Hoo, and Cormac Bohan.
However, two-year member of the Maroon Men Spencer Gonzalez, when asked about how he thinks the group will be this year, says, “I think this year in the Maroon Men has a chance of being the best in the group’s history, because we’re finally arranging music that is specific to us, and we have a strong group of guys who care about a lot the group.” Gonzalez goes on to say that he is “definitely excited for this year because we’re going to be experimenting with way different things than last year, like new clothing, different performances, harder repertoire, etc.”
Callbacks were held Tuesday September 22 for the Acabellas and Thursday September 24 for the Maroon Men. Both groups are very excited for the new talent they’ll be seeing at the callbacks, cannot wait to finalize the groups, and are looking forward to a great year!