The Collegian
Saturday, May 18, 2024

The Octaves Celebrate their 25th anniversary at their spring concert

The Octaves celebrated their 25th anniversary at their spring concert Sunday evening in the Henry Mansfield Cannon Memorial Chapel.

“This concert is the culmination of our efforts throughout the year,” said Duncan Trawick, a sophomore music major and music director of the Octaves. “Of course, the weeks leading up to the concert have an increased rehearsal load, but we really do prepare all year with Spring Fever in mind.” 

The opening act was The Sensations, a 16-member female a cappella group from Virginia Tech who performed four numbers. 

“We try to get a guest group each year, but some years scheduling doesn't allow us to,” Trawick said. “However, we were very fortunate to meet The Sensations during our fall tour, and they were incredibly gracious to come perform with us. I would say the goal now is to consistently get a group as talented and enthusiastic as The Sensations are.”

The Octaves performed: “Sorry” feat. Andrew Aguilera; “Kiss Me Quick” feat. Jorelle Montes; “The More I See You”; “Drag Me Down” feat. Duncan Trawick, Jack Tunnell, Adam Uslan and Oliver Lee; “Blackbird," feat. seniors Adam Uslan, Conor Lemmon and Oliver Lee; “Touch of Your Hand” feat. Jacob Litt, “Shenandoah”; “Angel of Small Death” feat. Oliver Lee; and "Weathered" feat. Pierre Galloway. 

“Our set list is generally chosen by any given faction of people in the group getting behind a song,” Trawick said. “It's then either arranged by myself, Jacob Litt, our assistant music director, or a professional.“

“Shenandoah” was arranged by James Erb, who was chair of the music department of the University of Richmond for many years. The song has been part of The Octaves’ repertoire since the organization’s founding 25 years ago. 

"The concert was great. Despite the a cappella groups having to move from their usual performance spot in Camp Concert Hall, the 'Taves did a great job," sophomore Mike Olano said. "My favorite performance was 'Weathered', solo'd by my suitemate Pierre Galloway. His voice is so captivating and the rest of the group had incredible accompaniment."

“The 'Taves are in a very good place right now,” Trawick said. “Our next major goal is to release an album which we are currently financing through a crowd funding campaign. We have already recorded several songs, and we hope to release sometime during the fall semester.”

Contact arts reporter Caroline McNamara at

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