11/11/11 was a lucky day for a cappella fans on campus. That’s when the oldest a cappella group in the United States, Yale University’s Whiffenpoofs, stopped by to perform an informal afternoon concert in Marshall Auditorium with a cappella groups from Haverford and Bryn Mawr. The Whiffenpoofs, who tour the world throughout the year, were in town to perform at the Philadelphia Episcopal Cathedral in University City that night.
Although not all Bi-Co groups were represented, many (Extreme Keys, the Mainliners and the Night Owls) did indeed show up to perform one or two tunes in between the songs of the Whiffenpoofs. A laid-back atmosphere pervaded the gathering, with the singers trading laughs and learning more about each other’s groups. (Among the highlights of the show was the Extreme Keys’ rendition of “Cry Me a River” by Justin Timberlake, which all the groups appeared to enjoy.) The event ended with half of the Bi-Co Chamber Singers (who were in attendance performing with their respective a cappella group) came onstage for an impromptu performance led by Associate Professor of Music Tom Lloyd.
Founded in 1909, the Whiffenpoofs have performed in a host of different venues over the years, including the White House and Carnegie Hall, and have appeared on many television shows including Jeopardy! and Saturday Night Live. Last year, they competed on the NBC reality show, The Sing Off!
Later that night, the Humtones, the oldest all-male a cappella group on campus, and the Outskirts, the newest all-female group, performed together and adopted each others’ identities in the process! The Humtones (dubbing themselves the Humskirts for the occasion) dressed all in pink, while the Outskirts (calling themselves the Outtones) feminized the white-button-down-tie-and-jeans uniform of the ‘Tones.
Both groups gave stunning performances, with Jon Fosdick ’13 soloing for the Humtone’s final song, and Rosalie Hooper ’12, offering a soulful version of “Who’s Lovin’ You” by the Jackson 5. It was a great turnout for an incredible show!
–Matt Fernandez ’14 (With additional reporting by Nora Landis-Shack ’13.)