Musical Medley at Colgate

Musical Medley at Colgate

Deryn Varney

Listen! There’s music in the air at Colgate University. Perhaps a musically trained ear could pick out some of the individual groups among the melee. They include University Orchestra, University Chorus, chamber groups including the Colgate Chamber Players and Chamber Singers, Wind Ensemble, Concert Jazz Ensemble as well as four prestigious a cappella groups and a pep band. Each one carries a distinct harmony of both talent and tradition that may interest a Colgate student who enjoys listening to music, performing music, or both, at almost any time of the year.

Those who prefer to participate in music by listening rather than performing will find that admission to university performances is generally free. The Colgate University Orchestra performs four concerts throughout the year, and there are performances by other groups as well, so there are many opportunities to attend music events. These opportunities include hearing the chapel choir perform each week at services or listening to Pep Band, an entirely student-run organization, that plays at many major sports events: football, basketball, men’s hockey and lacrosse games — which is perhaps even more incentive to go out and cheer for the team.

Each group brings diversity to the music scene at Colgate, but the school’s a cappella groups are a unique addition. The groups, in order of establishment, are the all-male Colgate 13, all-female Swinging Gates, and co-ed groups the Resolutions and the Dischords. The Colgate 13, a group of thirteen singers, was established in 1913; sixty-one years later, in 1974, the Swinging Gates established themselves. The two co-ed groups were founded respectively in 1992 and 2001. These groups, like other university ensembles, perform both on and off campus. A student who hasn’t heard them already soon will as the groups smoothly articulate a variety of music from classical to modern during first-year orientation. A cappella groups, chamber groups and ensembles are renowned for their talent at Colgate University.

For any student interested in performing in one of Colgate’s musical groups, the University Orchestra and Chorus are both open to participation by any student willing to audition. Certain ensembles and the Colgate Pep Band are also open to anyone interested, such as junior and drum major Brian Solis, who particularly enjoys being a member of Pep Band.

“I like the camaraderie,” Solis said.

Other groups such as the chamber groups and of course the a cappella groups do require auditions. Interested students can test their skill level by auditioning after contacting each group’s director through e-mail or telephone. Many auditions will take place on Monday, August 27. The groups always welcome new members, both first-years and older.

There is always music to make and hear at Colgate University, and students are always encouraged to go out and participate whether by becoming members in the different university groups or simply by attending the shows. It is easy for all interested Colgate students to enjoy music at any time of the year.