Wishing you an ugly Christmas

GVL / Archive
GV Groove performs during the 2012 Presidents Ball

GVL / Archive GV Groove performs during the 2012 Presidents Ball

Chanon Cummings

Grand Valley State University’s A Cappella group, GrooVe, is presenting its third annual Ugly Sweater Concert on Nov. 22 in the Cook-DeWitt Center.

Jacob Sackleh, the group’s business manager, said they work hard to organize themselves for this concert and work even harder to prepare for it musically.

With a passion for vocal performance, GrooVe has performed concerts at the conclusions of both the fall and winter semesters for the past several years.

“We perform our entire repertoire at this concert, whereas we only perform a few songs at other gigs,” Music Director Nick Ciliak said. “This year we also have Luminescence, a female A Cappella group from Hope College, as a special guest at the concert.”

The group rehearses for five hours every week and the members arrange all of the sheet music for the songs that they perform. Learning and perfecting the music takes a lot of effort, but it’s fun, said Sackleh, and they come up with choreography, which adds to the performance.

“Preparing for a concert is a lot of work, but the Ugly Sweater Concert is so much fun for us, as well as for the audience,” Beth Brown, logistics coordinator, said. “Once we’re on stage doing what we love, it’s a blast.”

Taking it all in while performing is the best part, Sackleh said.

“Nothing beats the feeling of performing and seeing the final product, knowing you gave everything you had for the concert,” he explained.

This year’s concert provides A Cappella music, food, and decorations, including a Christmas tree and ornaments.

“We perform all of our music A Cappella,” he said. “We use sound amplification for the sole purpose of making sure we are heard by everyone in attendance at our concerts.”

Last year, the Ugly Sweater Concert was held in the Grand River Room and exceeded capacity, and last spring they also ran out of space in Cook-DeWitt, Sackleh said.

“We want people to enjoy our music just as much as we do,” he said. “We want to share our music with as many people as possible while also maintaining a level of quality in our performance.”

For more information, visit the “Events” page on the GVSU website.

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