Grace Whitman ’22
When someone mentions a cappella, the first thing that comes to mind is Pitch Perfect. With that said, at Providence College, what comes to mind is Strictly Speaking, Anaclastic, and Special Guest. Performing without instrumental accompaniment, singing a capella truly showcases the vocal talents of PC students.
Although they all fall under the A Capella Club tree, the three groups are unique in terms of what kind of songs they perform and their member demographics.
Three students in a capella came forward to share their experiences in the club and explained what sets their respective group apart from the other three groups.
Michael Henshaw ’23, a member of the male-only group Special Guest, said, “One thing that sets Special Guest apart from the other three groups is the different energy we bring to the stage at every performance. We like to have fun during practices and during our performances and I think that people who come to watch us see that when we’re up there. There’s a reason we’re all so close and having that type of chemistry on stage helps a lot. We’re also extremely known for our unorthodox song choices that are guaranteed to be ‘crowd pleasers.’”
When they performed songs like “Classic” by MKTO and “Easy” by Lionel Richie last year at their spring concert, the audience could not help but sing along.
Rachel Denney ’22, a three-year member of Anaclastic, said, “Anaclastic is set apart from SG and Strictly in a few ways. First and most obviously, we are the all-girls group, so each of our groups looks different in participation.”
She continued by saying, “Something that I love about Ana is that we describe ourselves as a ‘girl gang’ and share a sense of sisterhood with one another. While I am sure all of the groups have a community feeling, there is something so special about Anaclastic and the way that we all grow together, work together, love, and support each other. Ana is a family and that means we can be goofy, serious, creative, raw, and open with one another, and I hope that this shines through in our performances over the next year.”
Strictly Speaking member Cole Patno ’24 said, “Strictly Speaking is unique, for we are the co-ed group on campus. We are a family in Strictly and we try to find ways to get every member to shine.” Although there is no music director for Strictly, A Capella Co-President, Richie Caporusso ’22, is in the group and Patno says, “he keeps us on track, but what we put out to the community is truly a collaborative effort.”
On Sept. 30 at 7:00 p.m. in McPhail’s, the three groups will be facing off in their annual Riff-Off. The winner will be determined by which group receives the most applause in several categories of songs including Throwbacks, TV Show Theme Songs, and Love Songs, so make sure to head to Slavin to cheer on your favorite group.
Be on the lookout for an announcement regarding the A Capella Club’s fall & winter concert and other events at which they will be performing, such as Christmas Carols. Also, be sure to follow all three of these groups on Instagram at @pcacapellaclub, @pc_strictly_speaking, @pcanaclastic, and @pc_special_guest!