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OwlCapella holds auditions before breaking into the a capella scene.
Fans of a cappella have a new group to complement their enjoyment on Main Campus this year. OwlCappella, Temple’s first co-ed a cappella group, held auditions earlier this month.
OwlCappella founder Rebecca Rosenbloom, a junior music education major, said auditions ran for about five hours and were filled with “constant listening.” She described the entire process as grueling.
Rosenbloom was involved with Temple’s all-female a cappella group, Singchronize, before she started working as a music director for another co-ed group this summer. She said the co-ed factor allows for more variety and helps voices blend to create a distinctive sound.
“I just wanted to bring what I fell in love with to Temple,” Rosenbloom said.
Tom McGovern, a freshman journalism major, said he enjoys singing with a co-ed group because female voices add a completely different sound. McGovern is also a member of Temple’s all-male a cappella group, Broad Street Line.
Rosenbloom said starting the group required a lot of motivation. First, she needed musical arrangements for people to sing for their auditions, along with a venue to house auditions and eventually rehearsals. As a music student, she has access to Presser Hall, but the hardest part was promoting the group.
“I had to know how to get people to show up,” she said.
Rosenbloom used Facebook to invite friends, posted about 300 fliers around campus and worked to schedule her auditions around Broad Street Line and Singchronize’s own auditions so potential members could try out for more than one group.
“And then I just kept praying they’d show up,” she said. After sifting through 74 auditions, Rosenbloom and a couple of friends pared the group down to 16 spots, including themselves.
“I was looking around this year for a singing group, and this is the first one I found,” said Mary Rush, a sophomore BTMM major. “I’ve always been in choirs and music groups since the eighth or ninth grade, and I really missed that last year.”
Rosenbloom said that explaining a cappella to newcomers during auditions helped distinguish OwlCappella from a choir or other singing group. She said she acts more as a guide, rather than a leader, because in an a cappella group, the singers’ voices take the place of instruments.
Rosenbloom is unsure whether the group will be ready to have a concert by the end of the Fall 2010 semester, but the group is still rehearsing.
“We will definitely have a performance in the spring,” she said.
Rosenbloom said she hopes younger group members will keep the spirit of OwlCappella alive after she graduates.
Jared Silfies can be reached at jared.silfies@temple.