Penta-who? Pentatonix!


Ilene Holder, Staff Reporter

In the world of music, there is a wide range of genres. Everyone has an artist and a style they like the most. Be it rap, rock, jazz, alternative, or maybe even classical. But one style of music that has become one for the shadows is A Cappella music.

A Cappella music is music without instrumental accompaniment. This means all sounds are made only with the voice of the vocalist. All guitar lines, drum beats, bells — everything.

This style of music has been one of the shadows because some people no longer found it entertaining once instruments started coming around and chapel music stopped being the main genre and style for music.

When someone says the word “Pentatonix” most people get confused and have no idea what’s being talked about. But when you say “Pentatonix” to senior Chloe Siebels, she melts into a puddle of bewilderment.

Siebels reacts like this because the group Pentatonix is one of the most recognized groups in A Cappella music, who just-so-happen to be a favorite of Seibels.

“I love them,” Siebels said. “They’re my passion. Scott and Mitch are just adorable and perfect.”

Scott Hoying and Mitch Grassi are the falsetto and soprano men of the group. Though most people don’t necessarily pay much attention to Mitch since he is a male soprano, fellow soprano and senior Michelle Meng takes a liking to him.

“I’m looking forward to seeing the male soprano because they aren’t very popular,” Meng said.

Along with Siebels, choir teacher Elisabeth Baird has grown a fondness towards Pentatonix.

“I think that people think that A Cappella music is old or boring, but I think Pentatonix proves that it’s not,” Baird said. “They show the vocal possibilities of vocal music. Because they have the extremes … it shows people the extremes of what’s possible with their voices.”

Though some people have learned about the Pentatonix through the show “The Sing-Off,” most people have heard about them from YouTube and friend referrals, just like senior Kara Hubecky.

“I learned about them through a friend two to three years ago who said ‘Hey, watch this YouTube video,’”Hubecky said.

The Pentatonix are sometimes looked at as an inspiration through peoples eyes, especially those who sing themselves. Teenagers in the music industry could look at them as the “top dog” of A Cappella due to the fact that their musical abilities are so advanced.

“Not only do they produce music, they do it without instruments. They solely use their vocal abilities to produce something amazing,” Hubecky said. “Which to kids that sing, is like ‘the dream.’”

In the world of music, A Cappella is one that is not done in only one certain style. A Cappella is done in many ways. For example, barber shop A Cappella, pop A Cappella, choral, A Cappella, and many other forms.

“You can do so much and really showcase the voices more than hiding behind the instruments with A Cappella,” Baird said.

Mrs. Baird took a liking to A Cappella music is because this style of music trains vocalists to be more independent.

“I like the A Cappella groups we have here and doing A Cappella music in class because it pushes students vocally to be independent musicians and not rely on a piano as much,” Baird said. “I think it’s really helpful.”

When trained enough to rely purely on your own voices or the voices of the group, a level of vocal music can be reached that can make people second guess themselves. Which is usually one of the highest compliments an A Cappella vocalist can receive.

“A Cappella music is amazing because you can do so much with only voices. It sounds unhuman. Almost like a machine,” Siebels said. “Sometimes, I question if it’s only voices because of how unrealistic it sounds.”