Mixed Company — one of Yale’s all-gender a capella groups — held its 36th-anniversary winter jam in Sheffield-Sterling-Strathcona on Saturday.
The concert included a pun-filled video, titled “Edibles Arrangement,” and a parody of a romantic comedy featuring two dolphins finding love at Woads. The group’s new first-year members, nicknamed “bagels,” chose the theme. The group debuted hits like Hiatus Kaiyote’s “Molasses,” soloed by Emil Beckford, but also sang MixedCo classics, like Todd Rundgren’s “Hodja,” soloed by the group’s juniors.
“I wanted to strike a balance, [so] each act included some old songs for alumni,” Musical Director Sofía Campoamor said of the set list.
She added that the set list allowed the group to “weave in new music” such as “Asking for a Friend” — an original Campoamor wrote herself — and songs from its latest album, “Tiny Room.”
Snow Job 35 II marked a momentous musical moment for Mixed Company, as songs “Home” by Marc Boussard and “Mona Lisa” by Guster featured female soloists for the first time in the group’s history. Assistant Music Director Neha Bhatt ’20 and Assistant Business Manager Nancy Walecki ’20 performed them, respectively.
The group delivered a dynamic and riveting performance, with numbers ranging from powerful belting pieces like Florence and the Machine’s “Lover to Lover,” soloed by Meg Guzulescu ’18, to soft and seducing ballads like The Bee Gees’ “How Deep Is Your Love,” soloed by Isaac Young ’19. These musical numbers also incorporated choreography, vocal and body percussion and trio harmonies.
Asked how it felt to perform at her first winter jam, Emma Rutan ’21 described the moment as “truly electrifying.” She said singing is a long-time hobby of hers, but that “it means so much more with this group of people.” After Rutan performed “You Go Down Smooth” by Lake Street Dive, she mentioned how her nervousness dissipated entirely.
The group’s juniors echoed Emma’s sentiments. Liam Riley ’19 detailed how going into his last jam, he had “a strange and nervous feeling,” but this anxiety was only temporary as the group “encouraged each other to just go out there and have fun,” Riley said. Business Manager Ariela Zebede ’19 said that during the concert, she felt more relaxed than she’s ever felt “at any other on-campus performance.”
Alumni donning the group’s iconic black-and-yellow bowling button-up shirts filled the first few rows of SSS room 114. According to Timmy Pham ’13, the alumni return every year.
“We’re like an extended family coming from all parts of the world,” Ian Janer ’11 said.
The alumni responded to every performance with uproarious cheering and standing ovations. They even joined in on the choreography. During the performance of “Ghost” by The Indigo Girls, alumni flicked their arms at right angles and snapped along with current mixed company members on stage. The concert’s closing song epitomized the alumni’s familial sentiment: The alumni dashed onto the stage, embraced one another and current group members to perform “Zombie Jamboree” by Harry Belafonte.
At the show’s conclusion, the performers friends and families showered them with flowers, hugs and endless compliments. Alumni then returned to the stage to perform “You’re All I Need To Get By” by Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrel, among other songs.
This spring break, Mixed Company will visit China for its international tour.
Minh Vu | email@example.com
Correction, Jan. 29: The article has been updated to reflect the correct spelling of Neha Bhatt’s last name.