Vocal Point ready for debut

Members of Vocal Point rehearse.

By Janelle Patterson

The Marietta Times

jpatterson@mariettatimes.com

After an invigorating camp week in July and weekly rehearsals in the choral room at Marietta High School, Vocal Point is ready to debut its exemplary fall set.

“It’s a fresh start with a new level of excitement coming out of camp,” explained senior Tyler Hartline, 17, on Wednesday. “We have a fresh group, a lot of new singers as well as a lot of experienced ones and just this will and desire to do great things over the course of the year.”

Vocal Point is the high school’s A cappella group and their set list varies from country to pop to other sounds that can be made solely with the singers’ imaginations and bodies.

“There’s really something for everyone in multiple genres,” explained Caleb Boersma, 15, who will enter his sophomore year this month.

New this year are a fresh crop of freshmen, too.

Scott Reider, the founder and former director of the Marietta Children’s Choir, returned from Columbus this year to teach at the high school level.

“They’re pretty fantastic,” said Reider of his new high school flock. “We came out of camp knowing each other really well and with over half of them being new and I’m new, we really came together. And they put in the work and learned all seven songs in the first set while at camp.”

Hartline explained that the beauty of A cappella, which he is now in his fourth year performing, is that a pop or country song can sound so incredibly different from the original tune.

“So even if you don’t like pop, each A cappella performance is so different you might really like this rendition,” he added.

The group is made up of 16 members, all of whom attended a week-long camp in the second to last week of July at Burr Oak Lodge in Glouster.

And with group memories and milkshakes, some of the new school year nerves are now gone.

“I like that we’re all friends, even when we do so many other things outside of choir,” said Boersma.

Hartline listed other sports some participate in, and senior Gabriela Martinez, 17, added other clubs, too.

“The range in ages here is good too,” Martinez added, before explaining her favorite song in the first set the group is to perform.

“I just love the simple harmonies of ‘Stitches’ (by Shawn Mendez) and the way the arranger put things together really makes you feel something,” she said.

Hartline said his favorite song of their fall set is about the need to take risks to get real rewards.

“It’s ‘Standing Outside the Fire’ which I think truly embodies that,” he explained, of the Garth Brooks original that has been covered numerous times.

Boersma said he also finds a personal connection with the song “Home” and feels the song reminds him that regardless of any other cares, he has friends in the choir.

“That’s true,” joined Hartline. “As soon as we come back here it all clicks.”

That could be heard as the strong lungs of Mikayla Tucker belted out Reba McEntire’s “Turn On The Radio” Wednesday during rehearsal.

The tune is made full by the beatboxing of Nathan Smith and the bass coming out of Hartline with beautiful harmonies from other members of the choir. Those wishing to listen in person are invited to the first performance of the season, Music in the Park, at 7 p.m. on Aug. 23.

The group will perform at the gazebo in Muskingum Park in Marietta that night for free.

If you go:

¯ What: Vocal Point, outdoor free performance.

¯ When: 7 p.m. Aug. 23.

¯ Where: Music in the Park, at Muskingum Park gazebo.

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