Artwork by Richard Hilliard
J.R. Snow, coordinator of fine arts at Harrisonburg City Public Schools, will direct the HHS ensemble. In 1996, Snow co-founded (with Dave Keller) The Madison Project, the first a cappella group at JMU. Regan Byrne, executive director of the Forbes Center, asked Snow to be part of the project to bolster community involvement for the event. Byrne says, “We are honored to work with a JMU alum who has such a passion for a cappella music and for working with students to advance the growing art form.”
In addition to HHS students, performing on the program are JMU’s seven student–run and funded a cappella groups, which include two all–male groups (The Madison Project and Exit 245), three all-female groups (Note–oriety, The BluesTones and Into Hymn) and two co–ed groups (The Overtones and Low Key).
The Madison Project, which consists of 17 members, has performed hundreds of shows, released seven albums and traveled the East Coast since its first performance in 1997.
Exit 245 has also made a name for itself traveling up and down the East Coast over the past decade. The 15-member ensemble has been nominated for three 2013 Contemporary A cappella Recording Awards, including Ryan Sill in “Titanium” for Best Male Collegiate Solo, Anicka Pathammavong for “Titanium&lrquo; for Best Male Collegiate Arrangement and Boyfriend Material for Best Male Collegiate Album. The group has also appeared on the Best of College A cappella CD in 2013 and 2012.
Note-oriety was founded in the fall of 1998, and is made up of “about 15 girls who share a love of music, performance and friendship.” In April 2012, the group released its latest CD, “I’ll Never Say.”
Founded in 1999 by Susie Gaskins and Laurie Wright, The BluesTones have toured extensively on the East Coast, performing popular music from oldies to present-day hits. The 17-member ensemble has recorded six studio albums including its newest, “Black & Blue.” Their rendition of “Battlefield” (Jordin Sparks) appeared on the Best of College A cappella CD in 2013.
Into Hymn is a girls’ Christian a cappella group founded by Kerri Pritchard and Christy Hartford in 1999. The ensemble consists of 13 members and has released five CDs, including “Not My Own&lrquo; (2012), “Breaking and Entering&lrquo; (2009), “Surrender&lrquo; (2006), “Unto You&lrquo; (2004) and “People Get Ready&lrquo; (2000).
The Overtones, an ensemble of 15, was founded in 1997. The group released its sixth album in spring 2010 featuring “Alone” (Heart), “I Will Come to You” (Hanson) and “The Wanderer” (Marc Broussard).
An ensemble of 13, Low Key was founded in 2001. The group released its most recent album, “Keychange,” in 2010. The song “Hit ’Em Up Style” is featured on the Best of College A cappella CD of 2011.
Tickets are $14-$15 For tickets, visit http://www.jmu.edu/JMUarts or call the Forbes Center Box Office at (540) 568-7000. Contact Jen Kulju, public relations coordinator at the Forbes Center, at (540) 568-4394 or by e-mail at email@example.com.