Sanford Williams, a third-year College student majoring in biology, also has another job: He’s president this year of the Hullabahoos, one of U.Va.’s many, many, many a cappella groups (but the only ones who wear bathrobes for their performances). The group was in Baton Rouge recently and … well, here’s Sanford to tell the story.
“In May of 2008, Mickey Rapkin, then senior editor of GQ magazine, gave the world a behind-the-scenes look at the bizarre world of collegiate a cappella in his novel ‘Pitch Perfect.’ One of the three a cappella groups featured in the book were the U.Va. Hullabahoos.“After the success of the novel, Universal Pictures and Gold Circle Films acquired worldwide distribution rights from Rapkin. The film, also titled ‘Pitch Perfect,’ is currently being filmed in Baton Rouge on the campus of LSU with a projected release date in 2012. Jason Moore – who’s directed TV series including ‘Brothers & Sisters,’ ‘Everwood,’ ‘One Tree Hill’ and ‘Dawson’s Creek’ – is directing the film alongside Elizabeth Banks and Max Handelman.
“We were fortunate enough to travel down to Baton Rouge recently to participate in the filming after receiving an invitation from the film’s directors. Following an exciting road trip, all 16 of the current Hullabahoos hit the set and got a chance to see first-hand what goes into making a major motion picture.”
The storyline revolves around a fictional female a cappella group dubbed Divisi, who rally around their lead singer (Anna Kendrick) to try and defeat the celebrated men’s a cappella group known as The Treblemakers. In the scene featuring the Hullabahoos, all three groups compete at the International Championships of Collegiate A Cappella (ICCA), and madness soon ensues.
“Before traveling down to Baton Rouge, the directors had us record an a cappella rendition of the song ‘The Final Countdown’ by Europe. U.Va. graduate James Gammon produced the track for the film in his Charlottesville studio. In the movie, the Hullabahoos will be seen performing the song in their trademark robes at the ICCAs. Traditionally, New Guys (new members) in the group receive their robes later in the semester. Nonetheless, moments before filming the scene, we presented the six new members of the group with their robes during a planned dispute on stage. Afterwards, the New Guys donned their robes for the first time as we performed.
“While on set, we got the chance to meet directors Jason Moore and Elizabeth Banks in addition to a few members of the cast. A few notable actors and actresses in the film include: Rebel Wilson, Anna Kendrick, Brittany Snow and Adam Devine. The release date for the film is not yet set, but until then we will excitedly anticipate our Hollywood debut.”
As will we all.
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