56th Annual All University Sing Competition Brings Student Talent to the Stage

Feb. 17, 2009

by Lauren Venegas, student newswriter, (254) 710-6805

The 56th annual All University Sing competition, a renowned Baylor University tradition that allows student organizations to showcase their musical talents and dancing skills, will take the stage Feb. 19-21 and 26-28. Each performance will begin at 6:30 p.m. in Waco Hall on the Baylor campus.

The 17 student groups participating in Sing have created 16 original seven-minute acts with a theme of their choice. While Baylor provides general guidelines, students are challenged with producing their own acts and taking into account factors such as vocal performance, choreography, backdrop and set design and theme development.

"Baylor students have always appreciated the rich traditions of the university. Sing is just one of those cherished traditions," said Keith Frazee, coordinator of student productions at Baylor. "Perhaps its emergence as a great tradition is due to the sheer number of people involved, approximately 2,000 participants and 13,000 spectators, combined with the impressive display of talent."

Sing acts are judged on level of creativity, entertainment value, choreography, musical quality and theme development. The judges, who come from all over the state of Texas, are selected based on their backgrounds in vocal performance, dance, theater or student services.

Audience members attending the first weekend's performances can vote for "People's Choice Awards" by filling out the card enclosed in the program. Voting boxes will be placed in the lobby of Waco Hall during the first weekend of performances. The categories include Best Vocal Performance, Theme Development, Backdrop, Choreography, Costumes and Music Selection.

"My favorite part of Sing is watching as students take a simple idea and turn it into a shared vision that is tangible and invites the audience into their story," Frazee said. "It may be a simple one-word idea such as 'bugs.' And from that one word, students create an entire story with all the details you can imagine. Watching the creativity and ingenuity of our students is easily my favorite part of All University Sing."

Student organizations participating in this year's production include Alpha Chi Omega, Alpha Delta Pi, Alpha Tau Omega, Chi Omega, Delta Delta Delta, Kappa Alpha Theta, Kappa Chi Alpha, Kappa Kappa Gamma, Kappa Sigma, Kappa Omega Tau, Phi Gamma Delta, Phi Kappa Chi, Pi Beta Phi, Pi Kappa Phi, Sigma Alpha Epsilon, Sigma Chi, Sing Alliance and Zeta Tau Alpha.

Sing started in 1953 as a choral competition. Each group stood on risers and would sing three to four musical selections, one of which had to be an official Baylor song. Over the years, students gradually incorporated costumes, choreography and skits into their acts, and by 1960, Sing had developed into the competition that it is today.

"All University Sing has a rich history at Baylor as a tradition lasting almost 60 years," Frazee said. "This history has turned Sing into a generational experience and is unique because, other than Homecoming and athletic events, it is an event that invites the entire Baylor community to participate in appreciating the hard work of the students involved."

The host for All University Sing will be Blair Browning, a 1995 alumnus and assistant professor in communication studies.

All University Sing tickets range in price from $16-20 for Baylor students, faculty and staff and $18-22 for the general public. Tickets to the performances are available by calling the Bill Daniel Student Center ticket office at (254) 710-3210.

For more information about All University Sing, visit www.baylor.edu/student_productions/sing.php or contact the office of student activities at (254) 710-2371.

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