Brigham Young University’s a cappella group Noteworthy is comprised of nine female members, all of whom are members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and whose voices, according to BYU Performing Arts Management, “deliver a power-packed concert that combines vocal percussion, humor, and a tight harmony style that’s all their own.” Their impressive repertoire includes a smooth mixture of rock, pop, country, jazz, R&B, spiritual, and other musical styles that are sure to capture the heart of every listener regardless of his or her age.
The group of nine Noteworthy ladies, which was officially formed on 1 February 2004, is based in Provo, Utah. The 2015-2016 members of the group are: Alyssa Aramaki, Sarah Cunha, Alyssa Flake, Rachael Holt, Allyssa Jex, Janae Klumpp, Jessica McKay, Tressa Roberts, and Taylor Whitlock. Keith Evans is the Faculty Director, and the group credits such artists as BYU Vocal Point, University of Oregon’s Divisi (one of the top collegiate women’s a cappella groups in the nation), University of Oregon’s On the Rocks (a premiere all-male a cappella group), Stevie Wonder, and Bobby McFerrin for influencing them to pursue their passion for creating a melodious sound.
According to the bio on their YouTube channel:
The ladies of Noteworthy seek to uplift all those that hear and see them sing. After producing highly acclaimed recordings, touring throughout the United States, appearing on the televised singing competition ”The Sing-Off,” and winning the International Championship of Collegiate A Cappella, it is no surprise that this nine-voice, all-female ensemble has quickly become one of the most popular collegiate a cappella groups in the nation.
BYU student, Esther Yoder, founded Noteworthy in 2003. She consulted with co-founder and then director of Vocal Point, Bob Ahlander, and also recruited two members of Vocal Point, Dave Brown and Dan Dunn to help create the group.
A few of the highlights of their astounding career include:
In 2004-2005, Noteworthy performed in the West Coast A Cappella Showcase at the University of California Berkeley at a Utah Jazz game, and competed in the International Championship of Collegiate A Cappella (ICCA). In the semifinal round, Noteworthy placed second in the west region, and Yoder received the award for Most Outstanding Vocal Percussion.
In 2005-2006, the group recorded its debut album, On the Horizon, and performed in the third annual Vocal Point / Noteworthy joint concert. A Bulgarian track on the album, “Kaval Sviri,” was nominated for a Contemporary A Cappella Recording Award (CARA) in the best female collegiate song category. They also competed at the ICCA, and placed second to BYU’s Vocal Point in the quarterfinal round. Noteworthy member, Camille Hancock, won the award for Most Outstanding Choreography.
In 2006-2007, the group again competed in the ICCA, and took first place in the quarterfinals, semifinals, and the final round of the competition which took place at the Lincoln Center in New York City, thus making them the 2007 International Champions. Director Catherine Papworth received the Most Outstanding Arrangement Award for “How Great Thou Art” in both the quarterfinal and semifinal rounds. Member Kristin Papworth received the award for Most Outstanding Choreography for Noteworthy’s full set in the finals round.
The group released its second album called Green Means Go which featured songs from their 2007 ICCA championship set in April 2009. “Listen,” a cover track from the Green Means Go album was selected to appear on the Best of Collegiate A Cappella (BOCA) compilation for 2010.
The producers at NBC contacted Noteworthy in 2009 and asked them to be one of eight groups across the nation to appear on NBC’s a cappella competition reality show The Sing-Off. The show debuted on 14 December 2009, and Noteworthy was eliminated in the second episode on 15 December 2009. After performing on The Sing-Off, Noteworthy went on to compete in the ICCA quarter finals in Eugene, Oregon where they took first place and the award for Outstanding Choreography, Outstanding Soloist, Outstanding Arrangement, and Outstanding Vocal Percussion.
In December 2010, their third album called Defined was released. The CD received four CARA nominations: Best Scholastic Original Song, Best Female Collegiate Album, Best Female Collegiate Solo, and Best Female Collegiate Arrangement. And in 2014, their fourth album called Unbound was released.
The group joined YouTube on 10 January 2012, and as of late 2015, they have amassed 33,671 subscribers, and their videos have been viewed over 6 million times. Their latest video, “Amazing Grace (My Chains Are Gone)” was published on 13 October 2015, and has already been viewed more than 4.5 million times.
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