This weekend my a cappella group at Emory, Dooley Noted, are holding our annual auditions. On Saturday and Sunday, we audition prospective members by asking them to sing a section of a song of their choice, some scales, and a short sight-reading piece. After deliberating on who we would like to call-back, on Monday morning we hold call-backs to make our final decisions.
This time last year, I had just started my freshman year at Emory. I have always known I wanted to try out for an a cappella group in college. I found several a cappella tables at the student activities fair and signed up for multiple auditions. After the long audition process I mentioned before, I waited to see if I had been accepted to any of them. Dooley Noted was by far my favorite, which made waiting for the decisions that much more difficult.
I chose to sing Remedy by Adele for my first audition. After being called back, we were asked to sing a song that was different in tempo or genre. I sang an acoustic version of Lean On by Major Lazer. I remember being so nervous that my hands were shaking and I couldn't clear my throat. I have never been good at standing in front of people or being the focus of everyone's attention. The idea of performing for such a talented group of people was terrifying.
Sylvia called me at midnight on Sunday night. The connection was bad and I could barely hear what she was saying. I made out that she was asking me to come to callbacks at 8 o'clock in the morning. It was early and I was tired but I made it to the lecture hall to sing for them a second time.
That afternoon I waited in my room for two hours for the results of my auditions. At about 3.45, I heard a knock on the door. I opened it expectantly and was greeted by Dooley Noted singing our alumni song "Your Smiling Face" by James Taylor. I was so happy and couldn't wait to start singing with them.
Singing in Dooley Noted for the past year has been an amazing part of college experience. Going to rehearse with them twice a week is something I always look forward to. I have become so close to every single member of the group and I feel like our group dynamic is similar to that of a family. I know that not everyone is interested in music but finding a small group of people with the same passion has enriched my college experience so far. I couldn't recommend it more. Joining an a cappella group was one of the ways I made a larger campus, where it is easy to feel isolated, feel like home.
If I am being honest, auditioning for Dooley Noted was hard. I was scared and excited and confused about how it felt so weirdly similar to Pitch Perfect. But I couldn't be happier that I took a chance and put myself out there despite all my fears. I love performing with them and I am so proud to say that I am a member of the group.