Imperial College London

Pitch perfect Techtonics crowned world a cappella champions

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The Techtonics with the ICCA Trohpy

The Techtonics - Imperial's all-male student a cappella group - have been named the international champions of collegiate a cappella.

The team are the first non-US group to win the prestigious prize for university a cappella groups.

The group performing at last weekend's Imperial Festival

The group performing at last weekend's Imperial Festival

The group competed in several rounds of the competition against teams from across North America and Europe before reaching the final.

The final of the competition, made famous by the film Pitch Perfect, was held in the Beacon Theatre on Broadway on 30th April and saw The Techtonics compete against nine of the USA’s finest to take home the trophy.

The Techtonics were given 12 minutes to perform their routine, a very British-themed medley featuring Queen’s ‘Bicycle Race’, Sam Smith’s ‘Lay Me Down’ and the Beatles’ ‘I Saw Her Standing There’. Their accompanying choreography included the group forming a human bicycle.

I think we brought some real British charm.

– Alex Moore

The Techtonics

Asked what they brought to the competition that made them stand out, the group’s bass, Alex Moore (Physics), said “I think we brought some real British charm. The scene in America has been getting really serious and ‘edgy’ of late, and we just wanted to liven things up.”

The night almost ended very differently when several members of the group, who were set to perform first at the event, became trapped in a lift at the venue – only making it out 15 minutes before they were due on stage.

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“It was surreal,” said Henry Harrod (Mechanical Engineering), a singer in the group and the producer of the group’s summer Edinburgh Fringe show, “None of us had ever done anything close to this. Getting caught by the broken lift didn’t help but the whole thing didn’t really hit us until we were waiting in the wings about to walk out on stage. There were nearly 3,000 people in the crowd cheering, it was incredible.”

Following the group’s success Imperial will now play host to the two foot-tall trophy, ‘The Gooding Cup’ for the next twelve months. The cup was designed by John Billings, the maker of the Grammy Awards, and is proudly on display in the Imperial College Union bar. “It’s great to have it here in the UK,” Henry added, “It’s the first time it’s left the US, and we’re ecstatic to have shown that the UK can beat the US at its own game!”

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Jon Narcross

Jon Narcross
Communications and Public Affairs

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