Hitting high notes with AC’s vocal jazz club

ANDREW TERRY | The Ranger Hitting high notes with AC’s vocal jazz club From left: Bekah Klopfenstine, music major, Pebbles Guest, music major, and Lorelei Sicks, a psychology major, practice in the Music Building.

Staff Reporter

Members of Amarillo College’s vocal jazz club say they are excited about their springtime activities.

“The vocal jazz club is a group of students who have an interest in jazz as one subset of music, but also anything that pertains to vocal acapella music,” Dr. Nathaniel Fryml, director of choral activities, said. He explained that the club’s four student members go out to various places around town to sing, which includes certain school events and even senior homes.

The club will perform at the Greeley Jazz Festival in Colorado at the end of April and will hold practices and concerts to prepare for the upcoming trip. Fryml said that being a member of this club requires commitment.

“This is very challenging music to sing,” Fryml said. “So it’s not for the faint of heart. But the students that tend to gravitate toward this club tend to be active, fun-loving hard workers, with great personalities,” he said.

Lorelei Sicks, a music major, said the club has helped her develop her skills.

“The vocal jazz club is just a group of immensely talented singers coming together to create music, whether it be jazz, or sometimes even pop songs,” Sicks said. “It’s unique compared to concert choir or concert band because about 95% of our repertoire is done acapella, so it’s all voice. We don’t use any other instrumentation other than ourselves,” she said.

To join the club there is a rigorous audition process.

“It’s a two-stage audition process,” said Fryml. “We test, not only your ear and your vocal ability, but also your ability to adjust to other voices around you. It requires a lot of vocal independence,” he said. Although the audition process is demanding, Sicks said that interested students should not be afraid.

“It seems intimidating to audition at first, but as soon as you get in there, you realize everyone else has nerves too, and if singing is something that you love to do, and you think it’s fun, and you have the time to commit to it, all you have to do is try,” Sicks said.

Students from any major can audition. Peyton Miles is a psychology major and a member of the club.

“It definitely has helped me because I’m obviously not a music major so I don’t work with music every day and specifically it has helped me to grow my love for music and my musical abilities,” Miles said. “I have to learn how to hold my own part, which is difficult, but I view it as a sense of community. Even though there are only four of us, we are a group of people just sharing their love for music and working together to make something beautiful,” she added.

Sicks said that being part of the club has also brought her new friendships and a deeper love of music.

“I have a deeper respect for music after being a part of this club, and it’s just been really inspiring and fun,” she said.

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