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Hitting a High Note

Campus favorite BosTones harmonize for fun and charity

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In the video above, the coed a cappella group BosTones sings “Many the Mile” by Sara Bareilles.

It’s not just about making it big as performers for the BosTones. It’s also about having fun and giving back to the community.

The BU a cappella ensemble sings at various charity events, including Harmonies for Haiti in February, a benefit concert for the victims of the recent earthquake. Turnout for the event, which also featured BU’s all-male a cappella group the Dear Abbeys, exceeded organizers’ expectations, drawing $650 in donations.

“Almost 400 people had confirmed to the Facebook event,” says BosTones vice president Nicole Sorice (COM’11), “but I definitely don’t think we expected that big a turnout. It was incredible!”

The proceeds will be added to other BU fundraisers and donated to Partners in Health, an organization that works to improve health care in impoverished countries and has had a strong presence in Haiti, even before the earthquake. The University hopes to raise at least $25,000 and will match that amount.

The original BosTones, called Bostoniensis, was founded in 1995 as a traditional classical group that performed a cappella versions of classical music — far different from the group students know and love today. Now its 16 student members perform current crowd favorites, such as “Save the Last Dance” by Michael Bublé.

“We come together to sing,” says member Cody Hayden (CAS’11, SED’11), “but we’re also all friends and have a great camaraderie — like a family really.”

The BosTones share a strong chemistry, and it shows. “We’re all very different people, but we come together and work together as one unit to make music,” says Alia Gilbert (COM’12).

“We also have a big range of voices; we have the jazzy singers, good pop singers, and then of course we have the people who can do it all,” Ben Martin (CFA’12) adds.

They practice twice a week and hold pitching parties, where each member introduces three potential new songs, and the selection process begins. “Depending on how many songs we retire,” Sorice says, “we will pick about four or five of the best ones. So you can say that we reject a lot of songs.” Their commitment and hard work has paid off with a growing fan base and a CD released last semester, Peace, Love, and A Cappella, nine songs that include a Justin Timberlake medley and solo performances by some members.

“I love them because they are awesome and they always perform really interesting songs,” says Sarah Khalifa (CAS’13). “It also doesn’t hurt that they’re all amazingly talented.”

Success doesn’t seem to faze these students. They love what they do and feel part of an important tradition: for in the end, says Liz Furze (CAS’10), “BosTones stay BosTones forever.”

Look for upcoming BosTones performances here. The group’s most recent performance was at Kampe Ave’m: Boston Stands with Haiti, at the George Sherman Union on February 28.

Nicole Rojas can be reached at nrojas@bu.edu; follow her on Twitter at @nrojas0131.

2 Comments

2 Comments on Hitting a High Note

  • Anonymous on 03.01.2010 at 11:13 pm

    BosTones really are BosTones forever! This group will always tug my heart strings!

  • Anonymous on 03.03.2010 at 10:44 pm

    For what it’s worth, the name of the song is Many the Miles, not Many the Mile as it says in the caption.

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