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Encyclopedia > Williams Octet

The Williams Octet is an all-male a cappella group at Williams College, Williamstown, MA. Founded in 1941 by Warren Hunke (BA, Williams College 1942; MA in Music Education, Colombia University), it is the oldest a cappella group at the College.

In recent years, the Octet has expanded its membership beyond eight in order to perform more complex, modern arrangements. The current group (typically 10-15 undergraduate men) performs in Williamstown several times a year, and also frequently tours the East coast and the rest of the nation.

Since 1974, Octet alumni gather in the autumn on Homecoming Weekend (see The Little Three) to perform a concert featuring Williamsiana (traditional Williams College songs) and the songs of Octets from many eras, including the current undergraduate group.

Notable Alumni

  • Warren Hunke (1941) - Singer/Pianist; Founder, Metropolitan Schools Choral Festival
  • Kevin Weist (1981) - Vocalist and lyricist
  • Michael Winther (1985) - Actor/Vocalist; "Harry Bright" in Broadway's Mamma Mia!

External Links

  • The Williams Octet website (http://www.williamsoctet.com/)
  • The Williams College website (http://www.williams.edu/)

  Results from FactBites:
Concert Review (1143 words)
The novelty by Graham Williams was a welcome addition to a restricted repertoire, reminding me of Sibelius 4 as it grew from the depths of the cellos, giving full value to the lower instruments; a good companion piece for the Mendelssohn.
The Milhaud octet is an exilarating riot of colliding melodies, vastly enjoyable.
This octet is dedicated to Paul Collaer and was given its first performance in Oakland, USA by the Paganini and Budapest quartets on October lOth 1949.
  More results at FactBites »



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