4.5/5 stars

With winter break finally upon us, what better way to celebrate the end of finals than with some holiday tracks from your favorite Georgetown vocalists? Throwing themselves into the merry spirit, various Georgetown a cappella groups have come together in Christmas harmony to produce Joy to the World: Holiday A Cappella Vocal Music, an album of holiday classics with all the proceeds going to the 1789 Scholarship Imperative.

Featuring a diverse range of a cappella groups, from the Georgetown University Chamber Singers to the Saxatones, the album is a great celebration of Georgetown’s exceptional musical talent and Christmas spirit. With the money going to the 1789 Scholarship Imperative, it shows just another way in which students actively participate in the giving aspect of the holidays. The album was created by the university’s department of performing arts and sponsored by the Office of the President.

“It is a terrific album that captures the spirit for what it was intended,” Administrative Director of the Department of Performing Arts Ron Lignelli said.

This project has been in the works since February, a mark of how much effort has been put into the album.

“I think alumni around the world and members of the university community will enjoy the spirit conveyed by the student voices,” Lignelli said upon the album’s release.

Each group has its own unique talent and particular style, and this is highlighted in the collective album. One of the standouts on the album is Harmony’s “Winter Song.” This offers a wonderful contrast to the Christmas classics that we all know and love. The lead vocals are soft yet powerful, and the all-female voices come together beautifully to create a surprisingly emotive track.

The classics are given their fair credit, and the covers are refreshing having heard the original songs many times before. Superfood’s “Sleigh Ride”is fantastic: happy, upbeat and exactly what a Christmas classic should be. The lead vocals are strong, and you really get a sense of the fun and energy that makes a cappella so popular. In a similar style, the Saxatones’ interpretation of “Jingle Bells” is cheery, fun and the perfect addition to your Christmas playlist. In addition, the choral songs on the album are beautiful and very well arranged, pleasantly breaking up the more upbeat a cappella numbers.

This album also presents a perfect solution to Christmas woes. Not only does it serve to make your family feel connected to your university life, it covers such a range of Christmas classics that they are bound to love it.

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