WACappella: “When Words Fail, Music Speaks”

By Aubrey Hastings
Student Life Editor

To walk into a room with the WACappella singers is to have the room instantly light up. Just to speak with them, their family bond that has grown over the years shines through.

“How beautiful can one group be,” said senior Mikhail Zaborskiy. “I mean, that is why I joined, and also because of how much fun it truly is. The group of people you have the opportunity to sing with are the most warm and wholehearted people. You are free to be yourself and put all of your guards down.”

Director of Public Relations senior Karly Kolaja has sung with the group for years now.

“I can honestly say that all of my true friends have come from WACappella,” she said.

WACapella awakens contemporary a cappella music, singing everything from the Beatles to Coldplay.

“The variety of music that we produce is incredible. We have Lady Gaga versus ‘I’ll be seeing You’ in our concerts. The WACappella group is so talented and they give me so much to work with. I expect nothing short of their very best, because I know that it is inside each one of them,” said senior Sam Scannell.

Scannell, the Musical Director, has been a part of WACappella for all of her four years at WC. She joined the group at its founding in 2007, when there were only six girls, no name, and no reputation on campus. The group was officially named WACappella in 2008 and has been growing tremendously ever since.

“It has been amazing to watch it grow as we gain more and more talented singers each year. We have reached a big point as a group where our name is known outside the walls of Washington College. It is truly incredible to see what we can do together,” said Scannell.

“Now people know us, and I’m still surprised every time someone comes up to me about hearing the group sing. It is flattering to know all of our hard work has paid off,” said junior Emma McMahon.

To say that the group works hard is an understatement. Six hours of rehearsal are scheduled into a week as well as sectionals to work on specifics.

After two years of WACappella, Zaborkiy agrees, “the work we do in here is very challenging, we really do hard stuff in here. We push to be our absolute best, and that requires working so hard. The results are so rewarding though. When you hear that chord come together, you feel it, and it is the most amazing feeling.”

Senior Katie Johnson is another who has been with WACappella since its humble beginnings just four years ago.
“Our hard work speaks for itself when you hear us sing together, it always comes together so incredibly,” she said.
The number of men the group has now also shows how much they have grown, ranking in with nine this year.
“The young men that we have in the group are extremely talented,” said Scannell.

Junior Veronica Spolarich, Assistant Musical Director, has been singing with WACappella for three years.
“We have definitely grown. We had 40 people audition this year. We were really sad to turn people away. We repeatedly have to turn away amazingly talented people. There are always such hard decisions to be made at auditions. It would be awesome if we could take everyone, but an acappella group can only consist of so many members,” she said.

Over the years, Sam Scannell has led the group with such passion.

“Sam cultivated the WACapella flower,” said Spolarich.

“We have grown so much thanks to Sam Scannell, I believe we can now do anything,” she said.

Still, Scannell insists, “I have learned more from them than they have from me.”

As for the future of WACapella, Emma McMahon will take the reins of Musical Director this coming fall, with the assistance of Veronica Spolarich.

“Emma is going to be an incredible Music Director, I have watched her grow so much singing over the years. She and Veronica are among the incredibly talented with contagious passion. They have big plans for next year, and I believe they will take all they have learned and run with it,” said Scannell.

What started as a few students who wanted to share their love of singing with WC, has blossomed into an amazingly talented group of passionate students who can be found performing their best at a number of events, on campus and in the community. There is nothing to be gained, other than for the love of music.

“Music connects us,” said Scannell. “You have to be vunerable when you sing, and on good days and bad, we have seen each other. We have truly become best friends.”

Their annual concert will be April 30, 2011, beginning at 8 p.m. in the Hotchkiss Recital Hall.

“This concert is gonna make the magic,” said McMahon, “It’s gonna knock your socks off.”

Be sure to also stay on the lookout for auditions in the fall. WACappella is open to individuals of all levels of experience and musical taste. Note that next year, the demand is high for beat boxers especially.

April 8, 2011
Volume LXXXI Issue 21

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