Raising voices in bid for success
Gerrards Cross student among those hoping to win chance to record in Abbey Road Studios in television a cappella show
A student from Gerrards Cross is part of an a cappella group battling on a primetime TV show to get the chance to record an album at the famous Abbey Road studios.
Phil George, from Gerrards Cross, is a member of Illuminations, who are taking part in a new Sky One programme to find out the country’s best vocal group.
If successful they could also get the chance to release a Christmas single.
Sing: Ultimate A Cappella is designed to test the power and versatility of the human voice, with 30 groups using beatboxing, harmonies, choreography and more to per- form songs by artists from David Bowie to the Backstreet Boys.
The series, hosted by Cat Deeley, was recorded in a London theatre and is on Friday evenings on Sky One. It is billed as the UK’s first vocals-only entertainment competition with no backing tracks and no instruments.
The Illuminations, all University of Exeter students, has 14 members and are known for their amazing sound effects, including beatboxing, animal noises and sirens. They regularly perform in Exeter city centre and have only been competing in a cappella competitions for the past two years. This year they qualified for the semi-finals of the International Collegiate A Cappella Championship (ICCAs). They perform on the programme tomorrow (Friday).
During each episode of Sing: Ultimate A Cappella the groups will be judged on their vocals, musicality, interpretation and per- formance. In round one each group will perform a medley of two songs to impress the judges, after which one group will be eliminated. The remaining groups will then have to perform a hit from a musical icon, with two groups then being knocked out of the competition. The two remain- ing groups will then go head to head in the ‘Showstopper’ round. The victors from each of the six heats will then be pitted against each other in the grand final.
Phil said: “Taking part in the programme was totally surreal, but it was one of the best experiences of my life.”
Phil George from Gerrards Cross is a member of the University of Exeter a cappella group Illuminations