By: Juliet Giangregorio '20
In January, I had the opportunity to go to the NE Voices Festival to watch Falconize perform. It took a little bit of bartering with my mother, who had wanted me to stay home and babysit my younger sister, but in the end it was so worth it. I had no idea what to expect. I had never been to an A Cappella competition before this one, so it was a totally new experience for me.
After school on Friday, the members of Falconize, Ingrid Sound, and I took a bus to Chelmsford High School. When we first arrived at the school, we were lead into a private room to hang out and prepare for the actual competition. While Falconize went into the auditorium for their soundcheck, the rest of us played an extremely intense game of Twister. Later, we all headed down to the cafeteria, where we ate pizza for dinner.
This was all fun, but the real excitement didn’t start until around 6:45, when we went down to the auditorium and waited for the competition to begin. The auditorium was filled with people. I love watching performances, so I couldn’t wait for it to start.
The moment the first group started singing, I had chills. You could tell how much effort each group had put into every aspect of their set, from the songs to the choreography. The energy in the auditorium was amazing. Everyone (or at least I) was enjoying the music, cheering and clapping like crazy after each group performed. I couldn’t hold myself back from dancing in my seat.
Falconize was the second to last group to perform. Even though they performed so late at night, they brought an amazing energy to the stage and totally nailed the performance with their songs Anna Sun, featuring a solo by Jared Casey, Innocent, featuring Kali Sheppard, and Carry On, featuring Em Baracewiz.
While we waited for the judges to pick the three winning groups, a professional group called BLACKLIGHT entertained the audience with a mix of arrangements of popular songs, and a few original songs. Everyone from the audience came down to stand right in front of the stage, and while we were all dancing and enjoying the music, I heard so many people from competing A Cappella groups complimenting others’ performances, voices, outfits, and energy. Even though they were competing against each other, they still made a point to lift each other up.
It was also interesting to see what each group did differently. I’ve really only watched local A Cappella groups, like the ones from our school, and the ones who make a special appearance during A Cappella Night, so I’m not that experienced in the world of A Cappella. But this performance literally made my jaw drop. There was literally not a single moment of this experience where I was bored. I was so amazed by how everything came together, and how smoothly each group’s performance went. If any of the performers were nervous, you couldn’t tell. Everyone acted so professionally, and it was really amazing to watch.
So, if you ever get the chance to watch any type of A Cappella performance, you just have to take it. I swear that you won’t be disappointed!
Congratulations to Falconize on their amazing (but not surprising) win at NE Voices! Also, congratulations to The Thursdays, from Chelmsford High School, and Northern Lights, from Plymouth North High School for being the other two winning groups!
Katie Miraglia, class of 2022, is a member of Falconize and Deception at DHS and can be frequently seen in the school's theater productions. She is also Drum Major of the Marching Band and plays bass clarinet. She took over the Danvers High Chorus Blog for the 2021-22 school year.