MSU Arts Weekend 2015 – State of Fifths

Today’s guest blog is provided by State of Fifths – a co-ed a cappella group from Michigan State University. “The Fifths” will be sharing their talents with guests at Grand Hotel throughout the MSU College of Arts & Letters 21st annual Arts Weekend (June 26-28).


A Rehearsal with the Fifths

If you have ever had chance a visit to the Michigan State University Music Building on a Sunday or Wednesday evening, it would be extremely probable for you to hear the harmonious and (sometimes) melodic tunes of our warm-ups, which typically last about ten minutes prior to each rehearsal.

Led by our music directors, we (as any singers intuitively do), sing a variety of tuneful scales and peculiar tongue twisters (that usually end with ravenous laughter) to warm-up our vocal cords after the long, oftentimes stressful, days college inevitably provides.

We stand (all sixteen or so of us) in an imperfect circle, each with music in hand and ready to begin another night of singing.

We are State of Fifths, a premier co-ed a cappella group on the Michigan State University campus, known to be relentlessly chordgasmic—a term that which dates back to our founding eight years ago.

As a relatively new group, compared to other campus groups, we have taken generous strides to earn our footprint in the a cappella community. Some of our recent accomplishments include: winning second place two years in a row at the ICCA Great Lakes Semifinals (after winning first and second those same years at Quarterfinals), as well as releasing a brand new CD this past fall entitled, Lost & Found.

Filling the halls of the College of Music with our impetuous laughter and silly sounds while creating arrangements, we collectively put in five hours per week in attempt to put our all into the music. Each year, we typically sing six to seven new songs—this year we included hits like “Bang Bang” and “Take Me to Church”—in addition to our alumni song, “Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For” as well as our ICCA set in the winter. All of which were arranged by current or past members of the group.

After hours of plunking out notes and singing the shrill repeated lines of our music, we typically leave rehearsal happy, committed to practicing and continuing our hard work throughout the week. We close each practice with a “hands-in” where we all gather in a circle and put our five fingers (an ironic symbol of our Fifths-dom) in the center, only to shout our infamously coined term on the count of three…chordgasm! Ending with a not-so-random “Random Hug Time”, we leave the Music Building to return again in a few days for another raucous time with our best friends.

We are so honored to have the opportunity to share our passion with the guests at Grand Hotel for this year’s annual Arts Weekend. We hope that we will have the chance to sing, laugh and entertain you during the weekend of June 26-28!

Until then,

State of Fifths
Michigan State University


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