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Review: A Pitch in Time (BarberSoc Presents)

A Pitch in Time was a culmination of a semester’s worth of rehearsals and a testament to the musical talent of its members.

Four choirs from BarberSoc (USyd A Capella Society) rocked a delightful romp through spacetime on Saturday night at Balmain Town Hall. A Pitch in Time journeyed from contemporary hip-hop to classic rock music, covering everything from household pop names such as Taylor Swift and Justin Bieber to the prominent rock band Electric Light Orchestra. On stage, the four choirs — The Power Chords, The Accidentals, Pitch Please, and Duly Noted — performed in sequence.  

The Power Chords and The Accidentals were two of the largest choirs to grace the stage, consisting of all four vocal types — soprano, alto, tenor and bass singers. The Power Chords wowed with a juicy arrangement of Silk Sonic’s Fly As Me and Cory Henry’s Love Will Find a Way, incorporating rap and traditional singing. The Accidentals, the largest BarberSoc choir, wowed with a mashup of Centuries by Fall Out Boy and My Shot from Hamilton that made fantastic use of bass vocals. The first half of the concert also saw some wonderful performances from small groups, notably Holly Miller’s haunting arrangement of I Knew You Were Trouble by Taylor Swift.

With only vocals to fill Balmain Town Hall, the singers performed a charming array of music through the ages. Tech Manager Andrew Wang created the perfect mood with lighting that complemented the unique arrangements and filled up the Hall. A Pitch in Time is not just a nostalgic throwback; instead, it depicts the changes in musical techniques, incorporating beat-boxing, hand-clapping, and stomping.  

The second half of the concert was hit after hit. So Hot You’re Hurting My Feelings was a stand-out performance of the night as singers added a dramatic flair to the song, filling the hall with laughs as Kat Porritt-Fraser lamented a lost love. Duly Noted dazzled in their classic green bowties, singing a classic rendition of Hazy Shade of Winter by Simon & Garfunkel. Pitch Please made the audience laugh with a 16th century rendition of Wannabe by The Spice Girls, quickly followed by tears with As the World Caves In by Matt Maltese. 

The final song of the night was well-chosen. Members of The Accidentals exited the stage and surrounded the audience as co-director James Kong gave an emotional speech about the friendships that have bloomed through rehearsing and performing together. With the lights turned low, the choir sang a beautiful arrangement of Ben Folds’ The Luckiest which brought many to tears.

A Pitch in Time was a culmination of a semester’s worth of rehearsals and a testament to the musical talent of its members. With concerts each semester, there’s no excuse to miss such a moving expression of talent and emotion from an extremely talented society.