Boston College’s a cappella groups came together last weekend for their annual Acappellafest—a night of great entertainment for an even greater cause.
Hosted by the BC Acoustics, the event is a showcase of all of the a cappella groups which put on a stellar performances in order to raise money for The Morgan Center, a charitable organization dedicated to providing preschool age children with cancer the opportunity to learn and socialize in a safe environment.
Children undergoing chemotherapy have suppressed immune systems and often cannot attend normal schools without risking a potentially life-threatening illness. The Morgan Center gives these children a place to learn, grow, and make friends while taking special precautions to limit their exposure to germs.
The Acoustics kicked off the show with a charged performance that set the bar for the nine remaining a cappella groups—none of which disappointed. The Acoustics had three songs in total, showcasing its impressive vocal and beatboxing talents. Highlights included when the talented Julia Gill, CSON ’17, sang Britney Spears’ “Hold it Against Me” and Matt Michienzie, A&S ’17, beautifully sang the lyrics, “you are the best thing that’s ever happened to me.”
The Heightsmen were up next, and they brought back an old favorite, “Buy You a Drank,” sung by David Goebel, CSOM ’16, with the rap stylings of Harrison Daubert, A&S ’15. The Dynamics followed with their rendition of “Prime Time” by Janelle Monae—sexy, playful, and haunting. AJ Hernandez and Kristina Rex, both A&S ’15, sang the duet and you could almost feel the sexual tension between the two soloists.
The Sharps brought some major sass to the stage with “Hit ‘Em Up Style” performed by a relentless Maggie Rogers, A&S ’16, who had a great voice and an even better attitude.
Voices of Imani followed with a fun gospel performance. As soon as the first soloist, Sylvia Sanchez, sang her first note, we knew we were in for something good and we got just that—a soulful and fun performance. The next Christian group was Against the Current, and Esther Chung, CSON ’17, nailed her first song with Tim Lee, A&S ’17—a mashup of “Unashamed/Till I See You.” Tara Sung, A&S ’15, belted out the group’s next song, “Shake It Out” by Florence and the Machine, and she had one powerful, amazing voice.
The Bostonians were up next and, as always, they delivered—the soloists were not only great vocalists, but surprisingly avid rappers, too. Sami Middleton, A&S ’15, sang “Problem” by Ariana Grande and it was one of the best performances of the night. Travis Russell, A&S ’18 and one of The Bostonians’ newest members, then sang “Summer” by Calvin Harris, and he had the perfect voice for it. The BC BEATS then brought some soul to the stage with a great rendition of “Who Did That to You?” by John Legend.
The Madrigals switched it up by bringing in some Renaissance flavor. The group harmonized together beautifully, and their lack of solos emphasized how well they work as a whole. BC Shaan made Bollywood more accessible through their piece sung by Kiran Mani, A&S ’15.
Amidst all of these great performances, though, the audience were once again reminded of why it gathered in the first place—for The Morgan Center. Rod and Nancy Zuch, the founders of the center, took the stage with their daughter, Morgan. Morgan was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia at the age of 2 in October 2000 and because of her condition, she could not interact with other children. Morgan was deprived of normal social interaction and learning experience in the classroom. It was because of Morgan’s experience that The Morgan Center was started—to give the children back a piece of their childhood.
Morgan recounted her experience, describing how her world was turned upside down. Today, Morgan is in remission, and she’s been cancer-free for 10 years. She’s now 16, an honor student, and on the rowing team. Her family only hopes the same for all of the children they serve every day.
Featured Images by Clare Kim / Heights Staff and Alex Gaynor / Heights Senior Staff