A capella is big these days thanks to hits Glee and Pitch Perfect. But the real thing is even more interesting.
If you’ve ever wondered what happens in a real a capella group, then this episode of ALTV is for you. Host Tonja Walker takes you behind the scenes of The Yale Alley Cats. During one of their rehearsals, members of the group, including the music director and business manager, take the time to share insights about the joys and challenges of balancing school and performing.
Legend has it the group got its name when one of the masters of the school yelled at four of the founding members that they sounded like a bunch of screeching alley cats.
Despite those humble beginnings, the Alley Cats are quite accomplished. They perform all over the world, including trips to the UK, Norway, Istanbul, and Beijing—just to name a few locations—in the past few years. They’ve even performed for heads of state, kings, and queens.
In addition to those accomplishments, they have over 200 arrangements and several dozen albums to their credit. Their most recent studio album, The Gamble, features ten brand new arrangements.
Their musical repertoire has expanded over the years, not just in the number of songs, but also in the styles. They now include pop and musical theater selections in addition to the jazz standards that have been part of their tradition since their founding in 1942.