Dynamics

Pre-Med Students

Dynamics

In this edition we consider pre-med students.

It’s fair to have reservations about the pre-med student being too busy to really devote himself to your group. But consider the fact that this intensive studier has made the conscious decision to try to take part in your group. Such an individual knows how to budget her time, so let her see what she can do in the context of the group; she may even help the larger group budget its time more effectively.

True, pre-med students probably aren’t music majors; it’s not their lives, and there will come a time when they’ll probably leave a cappella behind altogether. But consider the practical skills they may bring to the group. Have an accident? They’re likely to know CPR. Someone starts choking when you’re grabbing a post-rehearsal snack? Who better to deliver the Heimlich maneuver?

OK, so the fact that pre-med students need to study all the time may limit how many gigs they’ll be happy taking on or how extracurricular they may want to get with the group. But remember that that time spent studying is time spent not getting into trouble in ways that are going to come back and bite the group. Also, if they’re used to studying hard, they’re more likely to transfer that attitude to learning and practicing new music as well.

Harry Potter Nerds

Dynamics

In this edition we consider Harry Potter nerds.

I know, it can be hard to accept that the kid who came to auditions straight after playing an embarrassing approximation of quidditch on the main quad has a grasp on reality. Rather than dwelling on the point that this person lives in his own world a bit, consider the depth of imagination he might bring to your group. Such a group member may have some really interesting ideas that are a far cry from the beaten path.

So you don’t like the idea of the Harry Potter nerd bringing along his nerdy friends as hangers-on to your group. While it’s nice to be cool, don’t forget that any new fan contributes to your fan base, and never hurts to sell an extra ticket to your big show, or to sell one more CD.

OK, so the Harry Potter nerd might be a bit socially awkward, but what’s better than a truly socially awkward comment to help shut down extraneous conversations that are sidetracking your rehearsals? Use this to your advantage.

Divas

Dynamics

In this edition we consider divas.

It can be difficult to work with someone who wants the spotlight all the time. But with that said, don’t forget the value of someone who has no trepidations about stepping out in front of the crowd. This can be a go-to soloist—someone who’s not afraid to take on a challenging lead, or to fill in at the last minute of someone else has to sit a show out.

High maintenance group members can lead to drama, but they can also be a good internal gauge of how reasonable your group is being. The diva is more likely to speak out when she’s unhappy, and might well represent the voice of the larger group when they’re more reluctant to say anything.

The diva may be picky about what she wears or about the group’s appearance in general, but use this to your advantage. Put the diva in charge of picking out the group’s attire for the next big show. She’ll love the responsibility and probably do a fine job with it.

Pre-Law Students

Dynamics

In this edition we consider pre-law students.

There’s no downer quite like the group member who prioritizes both rehearsing and socializing behind studying. Pre-law students work hard, with an eye toward getting into a top-notch school for the four years to follow. The good news is that their studies can have real value. If they’re getting to know the law, they might develop some really valuable knowledge about intellectual property rights, copyrights, and what it takes to record, stream, and otherwise utilize music to your fullest benefit. So few groups really know what they’re doing when it comes to the recording and sale of music. Why not recruit a potential expert?

It’s true, the pre-law student probably isn’t a lifer when it comes to a cappella. But that’s no reason not to enjoy their presence while they still do want to be a part of the a cappella community. And should such a member make it big as a lawyer, there’s something to be said for big alumni dollars getting donated to your cause.

Attention to detail can be annoying when someone wants to nitpick every little thing about a group’s performance, and especially if such a person wants to get argumentative about it (as a lawyer-to-be very well might be predisposed to do). But never forget the value of internal criticism. Those who know the group best—who are an active part of it—and who can identify problems can be a real asset to helping the group grow.

Drug Dealers

Dynamics

In this edition we consider drug dealers.

The legitimate concern does come with drug dealers that they just might get members of your group hooked on drugs. And while I won’t try to advocate for drug use in general, as I recall it, when the Glee kids got hooked on speed, they turned in some pretty monster performances. Kidding aside, turning your drug dealer around, into a productive member of society could be a great PR story for your group.

Drug dealers tend to hang around with a rough crowd, and you might be concerned that, as such, they’ll get your group into trouble. Consider, though, just how many connections a drug dealer might have. The very nature of the job calls for networking, and by extension he just might bring in a slew of new audience members for your group.

It is problematic that so much of a drug dealers time is spent, well, making drug deals. But remember that that’s a part of his very lucrative business. The money made such deals could quite easily be turned around to help pay for your next CD, booking a swank venue, helping your group tour over spring break, or paying for a professional arrangement or two.

Your School Mascot

Dynamics

In this edition we consider your school mascot.

OK, fair is fair. There’s no denying that your school mascot is going to look kind of ridiculous on stage with you. But sometimes having someone so extraordinarily unusual take part in your group is just the thing to draw attention to yourself and become the talk of your campus and beyond. Just look at what The Amherst Zumbyes did with their guy in the banana suit. Does anybody forget them after they see that?

While there can be such a thing as too much school pride, and attempts to get your group focused on singing the alma mater and whatnot could get tired in a hurry, consider the up side that comes with the school mascot, and how may die hard enthusiasts of your college or university are going to support your group for the sheer purpose that the mascot is a part of it.

It can be problematic that mascots often don’t talk. But those who aren’t singing can’t be out of tune, right? And besides maybe you can assign him a specialized area like vocal percussion or harmonizing growls. Don’t sell your mascot short.

Pre-Med Students
Harry Potter Nerds
Divas
Pre-Law Students
Drug Dealers
Your School Mascot
Non-Traditional Students
Preppie Folks
Athletes
The Brooding Poet
RAs
Politicians
Newspaper Nerds
Promiscuous Women
Goths
Hippies
Business Majors
Musical Theater Kids
Nerds
Sorority Sisters
Fraternity Brothers