Last Friday, November 11th, we sang with the Princeton Glee Club down yonder in Princeton—enemy territory…
We arrived after a long bus ride (4.5 hours!), due to excessive New York City traffic. Flustered though we were, we shuffled on stage and had a shortened rehearsal before dinner. As we walked through the dressing room in the basement of Richardson Auditorium, we began to notice the orange pieces of paper that would become so important later on in the concert.
Before the concert, we had dinner, “which was like, a MILE away!” as described by a candid Glee Clubber. We are spoiled by our dining halls here at Yale. Either way, we were fueled and ready to go as Andy Berry, student conductor extraordinaire, gave a pep talk and got us thinking about not thinking.
As the Glee Club walked onstage and got into place, there was an energy and focus that I hadn’t yet felt in the group. As a freshman, my only concert experiences before this one have been in Woolsey, which is at least a little bit intimidating. The auditorium at Princeton was more intimate, which I think helped us all focus more on Jeff and the music. Opening with Zephyr Rounds set the tone for the concert: energetic, precise, and focused. Chamber Singers sang a piece, and we closed our first set with four movements of Howells’ Requiem.
Coming back onstage after intermission, we tried to hide our Yale gear, but they knew it was coming--there was even some preemptive hissing as the Princetonians spotted our Yale blue. During the football medley, Princeton proceeded to throw hundreds of orange paper airplanes onto the stage. We were well prepared with Yale umbrellas to shield us from the rain of orange! Hissing and “Yale sucks” abounded, but we still had lots of fun singing the medley, and the audience appreciated our good nature towards their hissing.
After Princeton sang their second set, we joined them onstage for BCY and their alma mater, Old Nassau. (Yale’s is so much better! But they don’t matter anyway.) Singing each other's songs seemed representative of our experience there: rivalries aside, we were all there to share and make music, and at the end of the day that was all that mattered. Of course, we’re better, but it doesn’t mean we can’t sing together!
We’re looking forward to our concert on Friday with the Harvard Glee Club! As Jeff says, we’re going to “show them who’s boss.”