The Gold ‘n Blues, Marquette’s coed a cappella group, has a spring concert Saturday at 7:30 p.m. in the Varsity Theatre.
The concert’s theme is Spring Forward. Kate McNicholas, a sophomore in the College of Nursing, said the Gold ‘n Blues were founded in 2008 in the basement of McCormick Hall by a group of students who loved to sing.
“Our seniors are moving forward in life and springing forward — for lack of a better term — into their new lives and their careers and grad school and whatever adventures that are coming their way post-undergrad,” McNicholas said.
Katie Ruffino, a junior in the College of Health Sciences, said she started her a cappella career in high school and has been in the Gold ‘n Blues since her freshman year. She said she is excited for the final concert of the year.
“It will be the last concert with these seniors, so I am excited to sing with them for the last time but (am) also sad because they’re going to be leaving,” Ruffino said. “I love the energy that we bring and how we can share something that we love with the audience.”
To make this concert special, each of the four seniors gets to choose a song that is meaningful to them to perform a solo. The group will perform six other songs, McNicholas said.
McNicholas divulged that these senior songs are “Home” by Ella Eyre, “Hold My Hand” by Jess Glynne, “Best Friend” by Rex Orange County and “The Boxer” by Mumford and Sons.
“We sing a broad variety of songs, from popular things on the radio to random stuff that we think sounds cool to do a cappella,” McNicholas said.
Colin Barrington, a junior in the College of Arts & Sciences, emphasized the hard work that goes into these concerts.
“I think it is our time and the audience’s time to see if the hard work pays off for different songs, and I think that that is generally pretty exciting,” Barrington said. “And we all share a love of performing as well, so I know everybody enjoys the stage time that we all get.”
The members of the Gold ‘n Blues have close relationships, Ruffino said.
“We have a really close-knit group … and we bring our own uniqueness to the group,” Ruffino said. “So even though we’re all so different, we can bond over the love of music and singing.”
Additonally, McNicholas said the alumni network is so strong that she has friends that were in the group before she was.
The Gold ‘n Blues is very involved and attends both on and off-campus events throughout the year, in addition to bonding events and community service, Barrington explained.
In addition to personal group events, Barrington said Gold ‘n Blues have many events on and off campus, which are sometimes paid. Such events include singing at university staff Christmas parties, performing for other college groups and working with high school groups.
To join this close-knit group, prospective members can attend fall Organization-Fest for more information about the audition process, Barrington said.
With the Spring Forward concert coming up this weekend, McNicholas said she is eager to see the group’s hard work expressed to the audience.
“We hit the ground running right when we get back to school at the beginning of the semester,” McNicholas said. “We learn 10 songs each semester, so we started the first week we got back.”
The group was learning these songs as late as this week to get all 10 songs performance-ready, McNicholas explained.
In addition to preparing for this concert, the Gold ‘n Blues have been working on an EP that has taken up a lot of their time, McNicholas explained.
“(The EP) set us back a little bit because we had to perfect those four songs that we recorded for the EP, and then after that we were like, ‘Okay, now we really have to work hard for our concert,’” McNicholas said. “So, we have been working really tirelessly this semester to get ready for this show specifically.”
Barrington said he is excited not only for the thrill of performing, but also for seeing the audience’s reactions.
“We’re hoping that there’s not only high energy from us performing onstage, but we love it when the audience members also join us with how involved they can be in other aspects of the show,” Barrington said.