Armed with new songs, new members and a new show time, Amazin” Blue, the University”s oldest co-ed a cappella group, will perform its 14th annual fall concert at the Michigan Theater tomorrow.

Paul Wong
Amazin” Blue smiles pretty for the camera.<br><br>Courtesy of Amazin” Blue

The concert, “Happy Hour,” showcases the group”s newest arrangements. The new additions to its repertoire include a version of Joni Mitchell”s “River” and “Father Figure” by George Michael. Amazin” Blue also will perform Air”s “All I Need,” a “really fun, laid back tune,” said business manager Marie Cheng, an LSA junior.

Cheng said Amazin” Blue staples such as “More than Words” by BBMak and Patty Griffin”s “Forgiveness” also will be featured.

The fall concert will offer the group a chance to show off its three new members, Josh Duchan, Chelsea Krombach and Tobias Singer. Cheng said the new singers joined with a lot of existing musical experience, which improved the group overall. “They already have snagged a couple of the solos for the songs we are doing this year,” she said.

Amazin” Blue also honed their sound with a busy schedule of performances this semester, Cheng said. The group has performed twice as much this semester as they did during last year”s fall term.

The jobs prepared Amazin” Blue for its upcoming concert. With this performance, the members aim to master the sound system they purchased two years ago. Amazin” Blue hopes to reproduce the quality of their a cappella performances at a louder volume with the equipment. “One of the challenges is taking that extra step to performing well with the sound system,” she said. “It”s the first step to being a professional.”

A change in the time of their concert inspired the show”s name, “Happy Hour,” Cheng said. Although Amazin” Blue typically performs at 7 or 8 p.m. in the evening, this show is pushed up to 5 p.m. In spite of the change, Cheng said she hopes attendance will top 1,000. Last year”s December show drew nearly 900 people, she said. “The crowd at the show fuels Amazin” Blue”s energy,” Cheng said.

“We all feel like divas and rock stars with our wireless mics up on stage,” she said. “You go out there and just feel like a million bucks.”

After being recognized for their achievements by national a cappella organizations, the members of the group feel a new energy going into the show, Cheng said. Amazin” Blue recently qualified for the quarterfinals of the International Championships of Collegiate a Cappella, joining fellow University groups the Compulsive Lyres, the Dicks and Janes, Gimble and 58 Greene. The groups will compete at the University of Wisconsin in February except for Gimble, which will compete at Penn State University.

In addition, an Amazin” Blue song, the Sundays” tune “She,” was selected for inclusion on the Best of College a Cappella 2002 album. “Limp” by the Compulsive Lyres and the Dicks and Janes” “Everything You Want” also will be featured on the CD.

“I”m glad (the announcement) came right before the concert because now we”re roaring to go,” Cheng said.

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