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Off Broadway On Campus Returns

by Meagan Cole

The first thing that comes to mind when thinking about the Roanoke College Choir and the Oriana Singers is amazingly talented voices bouncing off equally brilliant acoustics that the stained glass windows and elaborately decorated ceilings of St. Andrew’s Church provide. However beautiful, this setting did not embody what these masterful vocal groups were all about: Roanoke College. Therefore, the college community felt the need for more concerts accessible to people on campus, and so, Off Broadway On Campus was born.

Raynor Sebring, a Sophomore History major from Berkshire County, Massachusetts and member of the Roanoke College Choir, says, “In past years, the biggest critique we received is that we do not hold enough concerts and events on campus. In short, we do not directly interact with our own campus community enough. [So,] rather than only hold our traditional end-of-the-semester concerts…we are holding a concert on campus that will not require students to find transportation to the event.”

The first run of the event was held the previous spring semester and heralded such a success that Off Broadway On Campus remained to see its second annual performance: Saturday, April 6th, at 7:30 PM, in Bast Gym. Although the original only presented the Roanoke College Choir as it was a test run, the Oriana Singers will also be a part of the excitement this year.

But, what should students expect now that the event is less formal? Raynor answers, “Both choirs will be singing a medley from a Broadway show. Then, there will be 13 solos, duets, and other groups of singers performing showtunes from either Oriana or RCC.” However, from which show these vocalists are compiling their music is a surprise.

Now that the talent can be heard right in our backyard, those on campus without cars have the opportunity to witness the students’ hard work. Dr. Jeffrey Sandborg, the Director of Choral Activities and a Professor of Music, says, “The goal of Off Broadway On Campus is to offer a fun, entertaining evening of enjoyable music from the American stage and give our singers the opportunity to perform for their friends and peers. We also hope to inspire, perhaps, other students to consider singing in one of our superb choirs.”

What’s sure to be a wonderful performance shouldn’t be missed on what’s forecasted to be a fine spring Saturday. Off Broadway On Campus is free with a Maroon Card or $5 general admission. Also, if any students are interested in joining the Roanoke College Choir, Oriana Singers, or even a student-run organization like the ones who hosted A Capella Carnivella, feel free to contact Dr. Sandborg for more information.

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