North Hills Singers to enter in Macy’s All-School A Cappella Challenge


Calvin Chmura, Editor-in-Chief

On Tuesday, September 29, 2015, the North Hills Singers recorded their video for the Macy’s All-School A Cappella Challenge. The group performed “I Want You Back” by the Jackson 5 in multiple different locations around the school while being recorded by a few members of NHTV.

The competition was announced two months ago by Pentatonix on the Macy’s YouTube page. Groups from around the country in one of the three levels: elementary/middle school, high school, and college/university will be able to submit a video of their group singing the hit from 1969. A cappella is a style of music that only showcases voices, and no instruments are used in this genre. The same principle is used for the challenge: no instruments are allowed. The only instruments available include your voice, your fingers for snapping and your body for beat making.

The videos will be judged on three basic categories: 50% vocals or musicality, 30% on visual performance & choreography, and 20% on overall execution. Pentatonix, the world-famous a cappella group, will also be involved in the judging as well. The winning school in each of the three levels will win $25,000 to go to their school.

The North Hills Singers have been working on the song since late August. The arrangement they used was created by North Hills alumnus Nate Spear, who created the arrangement less than a day after Mr. Cloonan asked for help on Facebook. Once the Singers got the vocals down, senior Victoria Noker began working on the choreography, “I came up with a lot of it when I was about to fall asleep. I also used the Jackson 5’s video to get some of the dance moves too.”

The video was filmed by senior Tommy White and junior Gigi Balsamico. The video must be submitted to Macy’s by October 9th. The Singers shot in various locations around the high school, beginning with starting in cliques then gradually forming a group, ending up in the Auditorium in their uniforms.

The results of the All-School A Cappella Challenge will be announced on the Macy’s YouTube page on November 4th later this year.