BYU a cappella club to hold auditions

BYU's a cappella group "Vocal Point." (Photo by Jaren Wilkey.)
BYU’s a cappella group “Vocal Point.” (Photo by Jaren Wilkey)

Most people involved in the BYU community know about the a cappella groups Vocal Point and Noteworthy, but few know that the a cappella club is actually home to seven different groups, all of which are open to students.

This year, the club hopes to add at least two more groups beyond the current seven, according to club president Kyle Nelson. Auditions for this semester are set to be held Tuesday, Sept. 17, at 6 p.m. at the Varsity Theater.

“We hope to fill in all the spots that the group has,” Nelson said.

Around 60 to 70 people showed up for auditions last year, but Nelson said they hope to have a turnout of at least 100 people this semester.

To participate, students are encouraged to prepare 30 to 60 seconds’ worth of their choice of pop song and “just be ready to have fun,” Nelson said.

“(We’re looking for) tone memory, sight reading, vocal range; it always helps if they can beatbox or dance, for the guys if they can just move to a beat,” he continued.

If tryouts aren’t students’ style, banking on one audition isn’t the only way they can join — they can also start their own group.

“We’re not opposed to, and we love to help people make their own group,” Nelson said. “It just takes one person with the drive to make the group, like Attention, our girls group; they started last semester about two months in.”

Pre-English teaching major Mikaela Kemsley, the girl who started Attention, came to BYU with a love of musical theater but no plans to enter a program that had anything to do with it.

“I felt frustrated because unless you’re a theater major or in the opera program there’s not a whole lot of opportunities for musical theater, so I got into a cappella,” Kemsley said.

If you want to get into one of the big-name a cappella groups, like Vocal Point, former club president and former Vocal Point member Grant Zabriske said, “A great way to get there is to get involved in the club and to join another group and get experience there.”

Club president Nelson said all it takes is practice and a bit of confidence while performing.

“Just keep trying,” Nelson said. “Sing with the radio if you want, sing in your shower. Just have fun when you try out. We do love to make good music and sound good, but the groups are really about having fun.”

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