Let me tell you a secret: I did not know the Naturals existed until a few weeks ago. Many of Marquette University's entertainment groups came together on August 28th to put on a show called "MU Mania." This show featured improv troupe, The Studio 013 Refugees, hip hop dance team Hype and acapella groups The Gold 'n' Blues and The Naturals (sorry if I missed a group!). Unfortunately, I had to miss out on this show because I was working. I had seen all the other groups in the showcase perform, so I followed along with MU Mania's live Twitter feed while I was at work. This tweet is when I decided I had to learn more about The Naturals:
It is not secret that I love bow ties. But i also really love acapella music. I have always been curious how acappella groups arrange their songs. So, I decided to take on a third story this week and sit in on a Naturals practice.
I thought I was out of place when listening to the lingo used in theatre rehearsals, but acapella practices are a whole different thing. I mean, a lot of their terms are Italian musical terms. So they were literally speaking another language. I played the piano when I was younger, but I still struggled to remember the terms they were throwing out. I have a tip for anyone who ever sits in on an acapella practice: If members of the group talk about "Barry," they are most likely referring to someone singing baritone, not a guy named Barry. That one took me a bit to figure out.
The practice involved all the guys gathered around running through songs in their repertoire. They ran through about 4 or 5 songs during their two-hour practice. I absolutely LOVED the first song the guys ran through. I found every other song the Naturals ran through on their YouTube Channel except for that one, so I'm wondering if they are debuting it at an upcoming performance (Speaking of upcoming performances by The Naturals). So, I guess we will let that song be a surprise! Through this first song and the rest of the song the group practiced, the guys would sing lines or entire songs and then offer each other feedback and listen to feedback from their president.
The only issue I faced with my story was that the room the Naturals were practicing in is not ideal for filming. They were in a small room inside the Alumni Memorial Union. Since they were gathered around a piano, many of their backs were to me. Unfortunately, I couldn't move around during their practice, so I was stuck at that same spot.
Luckily, the practice I filmed is not the main focus of my story. Song arrangement is the focus of my story. The Naturals were kind enough to offer to let me sit in with one of their guys as he arranges a song for future performances. That footage will be the main point of my story, and footage from their practice will be interspersed to show the next step.
I am not quite sure when I will be sitting in on the arrangement of a song, but I am pretty excited for it. The guys told me which song they are working on next, and let me just say: girls will swoon.