By Jennifer Fogarty, communications content manager
The Madrigals and Upper School choir were treated to a workshop with the Princeton Footnotes on Thursday, February 1. Founded in 1959, the all-male a cappella group from Princeton University included a familiar face—Remy Reya ’17. The Footnotes also performed during flex time for students, faculty and staff in the amphitheater as part of their mini tour on the West Coast, which included stops in San Francisco, Oakland and Los Angeles.
During their workshop, the Footnotes led vocal warm-ups and divided students into groups to teach them the different parts of a song and then came together to sing the entire song. Students also had an opportunity to ask the Footnotes about college, auditioning for singing groups and their first-hand experience at Princeton.
“The students couldn’t stop talking about how much fun they had and how much they learned in such a short amount of time,” shared Caroline Przymus, Middle and Upper School choral director and musical director. “Students shared the new warm-ups they learned with their choirs this week. I love seeing workshops transfer into the classroom immediately like this one did.”
The Footnotes shared that as a member of the group and a judge, auditions are quite grueling because you see 40–60 candidates over the course of four days and only accept between three to five new members each year. Luckily, there are many singing groups to choose from on campus, and students are encouraged to try out for as many as they like.
When asked why they joined the Footnotes, the overwhelming response was to have fun and sing. One member shared he wanted to join a small group to make friends easily, and it was a way to get acclimated to the environment. The members vary from freshmen to seniors, hailing from the East Coast to California to New Zealand and South Korea, and their majors are diverse—economics, computer science, neuroscience and engineering.
On advice to our Upper Schoolers, the Footnotes emphasized being true to yourself. They shared that it’s easy to get lost in the excitement or pressure of going to college and overstretch by trying to do everything but finding what makes you happy is key. And don’t be afraid of the East Coast; it makes you appreciate California—just get a jacket and maybe a scarf.