Harmonious Grooves: A Night with Vox at Micklegate Social

"As a newcomer to a cappella, I was uncertain of what to expect. I knew it would be groovy, though, and it certainly delivered." Patricie attends the Uni a cappella group's latest gig for SCENE.

(Image: Lucie Spevakova)

On Monday 18th March, SCENE had the pleasure of attending an a cappella concert featuring the group Vox, ‘the grooviest a cappella band on the UoY Campus,’ at Micklegate Social. 

Vox is a 13-person a cappella group from the University’s Music department.

As we entered, it was evident that red was both the aesthetic of the evening and also of the group itself. Not only did the members match with red clothes, but the cosy atmosphere of Micklegate Social’s ‘Den’ was also further enhanced by the warm glow of red fairy lights.

As a newcomer to the world of a cappella, I was uncertain of what to expect. I knew it would be groovy, though, and it certainly delivered.  

Vox’s setlist showcased a fusion of pop and more classical tunes, all arranged by the students. I found myself marvelling at the sheer talent, passion, and dedication evident in such lively musical arrangements.

Each performance was unique, featuring various vocal groupings, from duets in the front to full ensemble pieces. 

The energy and quality seemed to heighten as the concert progressed. The climax arrived with the stirring renditions of ‘Little Girl Gone’ and ‘Chalk Outlines’, arranged by Andrew Morton and impressively performed by the lead vocalists accompanied by the band. These were noticeably touching, breath-taking and tear-jerking for the audience. 

Contrastingly, before that, we heard a mix of two songs by Olivia Dean, arranged by Niki Tsumagari, and a more dancy number, Billie Jean. 

I was particularly impressed by the seamless transitions between song; the singers 

transitioned from solo performances to joining the ensemble without missing a beat.

We had the opportunity to chat with the ensemble member and co-president, Niki Tsumagari, about her experience as an a cappella singer and what she enjoys about it.

“I enjoy learning new songs, especially if it is an arrangement that one of us has made. It is always cool to see new work, and then after spending all the time learning your own part, coming together and doing it all together for the first time and it sounds great. It is always an incredible feeling.”

“[Being in the ensemble] is a very cool experience to say the least, because I do love singing and it is good to know that everyone else in the acapella group also loves singing.”

Niki also shared the challenges she faces as a co-president and how amazing and relieved she felt after the concert, as it “pretty much felt like her baby.”

If you’re looking for a unique and unconventional evening to enjoy olives and a glass of wine, filled with the raw beauty of the human voice, Vox’s next concert is on 10th May 2024 alongside Animas and Zamar. 

Tickets are available on https://yorkconcerts.co.uk/whats-on/2023-24/voyage-student-showcase/, so make sure to get them in time! 

To get involved, Vox is running auditions at the beginning of each academic year. Find out more on their Instagram, @voxyork.

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