A cappella

Collegiate concert

Yale Whiffenpoofs, Tufts Beelzebubs, and more. Feb. 4, 7:30 p.m. at the Latchis Theater, 50 Main St., Brattleboro.Tickets: brattleboromuseum.org. $20 to $50.802-257-0124, ext. 101.Collegiate a cappella benefit concert returns to Brattleboro on Feb. 4

BRATTLEBORO — Some of the finest undergraduate singing groups in the nation will perform at the Latchis Theater on Saturday, Feb. 4, 2017 at 7:30 p.m., in Brattleboro's 14th Annual Collegiate A Cappella Concert. A benefit for the Brattleboro Museum & Art Center (BMAC) sponsored by Brattleboro Savings & Loan, The Richards Group, Twombly Wealth Management Group, Berkley & Veller Greenwood Country Realtors, and Brattleboro Community TV, the concert will feature the legendary Yale Whiffenpoofs, the Tufts Beelzebubs, Tufts Amalgamates, University of Maine Renaissance, Middlebury Dissipated Eight, and University of Vermont Cat's Meow.

Tickets are available exclusively through brattleboromuseum.org. Prices range from $20 to $50. This popular event regularly sells out, so those interested in attending are encouraged to purchase tickets in advance. For more information, call BMAC at 802-257-0124, ext. 101.

Founded in 1909, the all-male Yale Whiffenpoofs were the very first collegiate a cappella group, the progenitors of a movement that now includes over 2,000 groups nationwide. The group consists entirely of seniors who perform extensively throughout the school year and go on a three-month world tour over the summer. Famous Whiffs alumni include the composer and songwriter Cole Porter and U.S. Senator Prescott Bush, father of President George H.W. Bush and grandfather of President George W. Bush. The current iteration of the Whiffenpoofs counts among its ranks tenor Benson May, who grew up in Putney and graduated from Brattleboro Union High School.

In the fall of 1962, the son of a former Whiffenpoof (obviously afflicted with an affinity for unusual polysyllabic names) founded the all-male Beelzebubs at Tufts University. Decades later, both the Whiffenpoofs and Beelzebubs appeared on the NBC a cappella competition show, "The Sing-Off" -- the Whiffs in 2010 and the Bubs in 2009. Both groups have performed throughout the country and around the world, at major sporting events, and at such venues as Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, and The White House. The Bubs were the real-life voices of the Dalton Academy Warblers on the hit TV series "Glee," and they were the focus of the book "Pitch Perfect," on which the recent blockbuster Hollywood movies were based. BMAC Director and concert emcee Danny Lichtenfeld is an alumnus of the Bubs.

Three of the four other groups slated to perform on February 4 feature singers who grew up in or around Brattleboro, starred in local musical productions, and graduated from high school in the area. They are Aurora Phillips of the co-ed Tufts Amalgamates, Julia Waldron of the all-female University of Maine Renaissance, and Will "Salty" Pennington-FitzGerald of the all-male Middlebury Dissipated Eight. Rounding out the program are the all-female University of Vermont Cat's Meow.

"Giving these kids a chance to return to their hometown and strut their stuff in front of a sold-out crowd is one of the best things about this event," said Lichtenfeld. "It's exactly what former producer Dede Cummings envisioned when she founded this concert 14 years ago."

"The fact that so many local kids are involved in music at the college level and beyond," added Lichtenfeld, "is a testament to the outstanding teaching and performance opportunities available in area schools and at the Brattleboro Music Center, New England Youth Theater, and Vermont Jazz Center."

Founded in 1972, the Brattleboro Museum & Art Center presents rotating exhibits of contemporary art, complemented by lectures, artist talks, film screenings, and other public programs. The museum's exhibits and gift shop are open every day except Tuesday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Regular admission is $8 for adults, $6 for seniors, and $4 for students. Members and children 18 and under are admitted free of charge. Located in historic Union Station in downtown Brattleboro, at the intersection of Main Street and Routes 119 and 142, the museum is wheelchair accessible. For more information, call 802-257-0124 or visit www.brattleboromuseum.org.

Major support for BMAC is provided by its members, the Vermont Arts Council, C&S Wholesale Grocers, Sam's Outdoor Outfitters, People's United Bank, David Walter Goldsmith & Platinumsmith, Whetstone Station Restaurant & Brewery, and Allen Brothers Oil.


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