April 30, 2010
Last Friday, April 30th, the Chorallaries of MIT sang in their annual spring concert, aptly titled “Sing Delivery” by virtue of the fact that the sophomores’ Ring Delivery fell on the same night. The Chorallaries are MIT’s oldest coed a cappella group, known for their ambitious arrangements and solid vocals. This last concert served as an enthusiastic showcase of both their never-before-heard singles and classics from years before.
The group’s newest songs were rich in variety and emotion, ranging from the more somber “Feel” — originally by Robbie Williams and featuring soloist Michael A. Chen ’12 — to the upbeat mashup of “Love Drunk” by Boys Like Girls and “Battlefield” by Jordin Sparks. “Mercy” by Duffy was a crowd hit and my personal favorite; the soulful performance (arranged by Jamal A. Elkhader ’13) captured the true spirit of the Chorallaries with its dynamic rhythms, intricate interweaving of background voices, and stellar solo by Mairead F. Daniels ’12. As all of the Chorallaries’ performed songs are arranged by members of the group, such a successful string of new songs goes only to speak for the talent of its members.
The second half of the show consisted of old songs: the graduating seniors’ first solos. These senior singouts portrayed the rich history of both the group as a whole and the individual senior soloist. Each of the six members from the Class of 2010 received a gift from the group and a heartfelt speech by an underclassman close to them before performing their song. These performances ranged from the classic Chorallaries’ staple “Africa” by Todo (sung by Jared C. Sadoian ’10) to the largely rap-based “Papercut” by Linkin Park (Michael R. Blaisse ’10). It was at this point in the show that everyone — the audience included — started getting emotional. Yelena S. Bagdasarova ’10 gave a tender rendition of “Rainbow Connection” by Kermit the Frog that had a good quarter of the group crying. This focus on the seniors gave the audience a glimpse into the group’s character and provided a nice contrast to Bad Taste — their raunchy exhibition of everything obscene back in February.
The fact that the concert Friday night packed 10-250 even as a wide array of other campus events were happening speaks volumes for the group’s popularity and reputation for excellence. As usual, the Chorallaries remain an exciting source of a cappella entertainment on campus.
This year marked a recording year for the Chorallaries, who switch off annually between recording, touring, and competition. Their newest CD, Stereophony, was officially released the night of their concert. Buy it online at http://choral.mit.edu/store for $15.