Noteworthy will officially join BYU as a performing ensemble this fall, to give members university class credit and expand performance opportunities.
Noteworthy is a nine-member, all-female a cappella group that was established 10 years ago by a BYU student. It will now be a part of BYU Performing Arts Management. The group has performed on campus and throughout the world, but until now it has not been officially recognized as a BYU performing ensemble. The group will now have access to more performing opportunities, music industry connections, more campus advertising and a wider pool of singers.
Tatiana Quinn, former director and member of Noteworthy, and Sara Phelps, another former member, have helped the group transition from a student-run entity to being run by BYU Performing Arts Management.
“For 10 years we have been trying to get into the BYU School of Music,” Phelps said. “Noteworthy was just a club, but now with the backing of the school and the organization and connections that come with that, Noteworthy will be around for a long time. I feel confident that Noteworthy will now be booked and more efficient.”
Becoming an official BYU performing ensemble means the members of Noteworthy will receive university credit for their rehearsal and performing time.
“It is safe to say that it was something I was passionate about,” Quinn said. “I wanted to give Noteworthy the opportunity to grow and flourish as an entity of BYU as well as a unique, all-female a cappella group. I was so happy to hear the good news.”
The group’s founder and a BYU alumna, Esther Vangorder, patterned the idea of the group after the nine-member, all-male group Vocal Point. After seeing Vocal Point perform, Vangorder wanted to create a female group of the same caliber. The group was self-sustained and run by BYU students for 10 years. During those years, the group has produced four albums and has placed nationally in a cappella competitions. Now, as an official part of BYU’s performing arts, it will have many more opportunities.
“Watching Noteworthy evolve has been an emotional process,” Vangorder said. “I had hopes and dreams for Noteworthy, but I wasn’t sure what would happen to it. BYU wanted to wait and see if we would fizzle out, and we just needed time to prove that we weren’t going to. Noteworthy stuck around, grew and rocked the house.”
Noteworthy will be directed by former Vocal Point member Keith Evans. Evans was part of the Vocal Point group that performed on NBC’s “The Sing Off” in 2011.
“As the director, it is a daunting task,” Evans said. “I am interested in the long-term success of the group. My vision for the group is to become one of the most requested ensembles at BYU. I am not worried so much about the rehearsals, rather, the developing of the class curriculum.”
Taylor Olson, a BYU graduate in music media and a former member of Noteworthy, expressed her excitement for the group to amp up its performing game. She is currently pursuing her music career in Los Angeles with her band, June Cat. Noteworthy played a role in her becoming the performer she is today.
“Noteworthy really helped me hone my musicality as well as my performance skills,” Olson said. “I am ecstatic for the Noteworthy girls to be able to receive school credit for all the time they put into it, and it will be great to have the backing of the School of Music in order to get funding, a great director, more gigs and, hopefully, a larger audition pool.”
Auditions for the group will be held Sept. 3. “There is a 100 percent turnover,” Evans said. “We are looking for nine members. My plan is that we hit the ground running with this new opportunity that we have.”