Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Sing It On Episode 3: Northeast Quarterfinals

In Boston, the Nor'Easters remind us that two years ago they were the ICCA champions and they were invited to the White House and Michelle Obama touched Isaac's shoulder.  They are gearing up for their quarterfinals, Isaac tells the others that you go performance blind on the stage, which is why your best performance is only as good as your worst rehearsal.  (I mention this only because later someone else will say something different, proving there is an axiom for all situations.)
Jessie and Samantha have a discussion about the plans Jessie has for the group to wear. 

Due to the magic of TV, NoCo is still making their way back to/through Illinois on their party bus except for Jessica, who you may remember rode separately.  Since the folks on the bus have the score sheets and are processing, they note it would be kind of nice to have their music director with them.  The judges did apparently mention that there seemed to be a rushed feeling, particularly in the last song. Micah says that was probably her fault.  They have 48 days until semi-finals.

Back in Boston, the Nor'Easters, who in case you forgot are former champions, have very high standards to uphold.  They are doing part checks, where they break folks into groups by part (I'm guessing an soprano, an alto, a tenor, and a bass) and have you go through the song while Isaac, Jessie and someone else stand near each group to evaluate.  Eric notes that he can tell when he makes a mistake, because Isaac, who is facing away from him, will tip his head each time. 
Isaac makes me wonder if he is a business major, since he tells the camera that Eric is "not implementing notes" and he tells Jessie and the other dude who's name I don't know that Eric was not good, and they need to meet with him.  In said meeting they tell Eric that this is consecutive part checks that he has failed and, they stress that this is them speaking as music director and president and not his friend, but they cannot allow him to compete with them.  Eric says he understands and tells the camera that he's bummed that they'll be on stage without him. 
Over at Pitch Please (who apparently use a comma and an exclamation point, and I'm sorry, just no) they remind us all that they are an all female group, defined by their sassiness and their signature gold heels.  This is their third year as a group, and they made it to semi-finals the last two years.  Callie tells us female groups are usually considered childish. (Say what?)  In rehearsal, she mentions a number of them are sick, there are several shots of various members coughing, sneezing and speaking in stuffed up or hoarse voices.  They have two days before semi-finals and apparently still have a song and two dances to learn. 

In Boston, Jessie and Sam from Nor'Easters go shopping. 

In Illinois, NoCo they goes out for karaoke, which Lizzie explains, over shots of her singing "Let it Go" that karaoke is her reason for life. Max tells us that Lizzie is their court jester, bringing the fun.  Micah sings "I Wanna Dance With Somebody" and tells the camera she has her mojo back now. 

In Florida, ANY is having an anti-Valentine's Day party, which, I think they are doing it wrong, because the only anti part to it seems to be that they are all currently single.  There are hearts and red and pink all over.  Christian tells the camera he's had a crush on Andie since high school (playing the long game there, dude).  Michael tells the camera he has strict rules about what he will later call "aca-dating" because apparently the last time there was intergroup dating the dude dumped the dudette and she left the group and formed the Acabelles.  (I went to a university that only had an all female a capella group, so I know female a capella groups that weren't formed in response to something going on in the coed group exist.  Sadly, it appears we will not be meeting any in this show.)
Someone decides they should play suck and blow, and apparently far too many of them have never watched "Clueless" or are pretending they don't know about this game.  So, as you might suspect, Christian and Andie end up next to each other and, oops, Christian drops the paper and kisses Andie.  Andie is embarrassed that this has happened in front of everyone, but otherwise does not seem to mind. 
In Boston, Sam, Sara, and Isaac of the Nor'Easters are chilling after a long week of intense rehearsals.  They fail a bit at chilling because Sam asks Isaac if he has planned out the sound check and then is horrified that he hasn't and starts trying to plan it for him.  Because she says, the "sound check determines what happens at the show". 
Callie, who you'll remember is Sam's roommate and Pitch, Please! member, arrives back visibly tired after a four hour rehearsal.  The Nor'Easters all seem shocked that they rehearsed that long the night before quarter finals.

And now we are at quarterfinals. Isaac tells the camera he doesn't just want to win quarterfinals, he's planning to win the whole thing, by a landslide. He thinks Pitch, Please! and the Vassar Devils are their biggest competition. 
Callie and the rest of Pitch, Please! are trying every remedy under the sun, chugging honey, olive oil, sniffing wasabi, and generally trying not to cough and sneeze. 
The soundcheck is ten minutes for a 12 minute set, so they go through bits, so the stage manager can check the mikes and such.  The Nor'Easters have some issues with mikes, which of course means they are all worried now.  Except Jessie who says that a bad rehearsal means a good performance. 
Isaac gives them a pep talk, saying this is their last chance to give it their all.  Sam reminds the camera she is a senior so this is maybe her last ICCA performance.
The Nor'Easters go on, and again I'll note that at this point we're seeing such tiny snippets of the performances, it's hard to get a sense of them.  I understand why, since for the groups who continue we'll see these songs many more times, but it makes trying to recap the performance pretty impossible. 
The Nor'Easters get a standing ovation which they tell the camera is unusual.
Backstage they are all giddy and all convinced it went as well as possible.
Pitch, Please! is making their way to the stage, and Callie's jumpsuit rips.  Jill sews her up while other members do last minute honey shots. Tamani says it wouldn't be Pitch, Please! if the didn't have a minor disaster backstage.
Sam reminds the camera that she and Callie are competitors but roommates and friends too, so she goes to watch Pitch, Please!.  Pitch, Please! seems happy but in a soggier way about how things went.  Sam tells Callie she's super proud.
Isaac, Sam, and Jessie go to watch the Vassar Devils and look very worried.
The results are in, and in third place is, and the announcer starts with Northeastern University leading to two groups perking up, and it's Pitch, Please!.  Vassar Devils are in second, and Nor'Easters are first. 
Backstage, Emma, the music director for Pitch, Please! tells them that third place is still awesome, even if it means no semis for them, but everyone should be really proud.  Callie is happy for Sam.  The Nor'Easters have an after party. 
Edited to correct names.