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Posted on Fri, Apr 9, 2010 : 12:03 p.m.

U-M Men's Glee Club plans 150th anniversary Alumni Reunion Concert on Saturday

By Jeremy Peters

This weekend, alumni of the second-oldest collegiate choir in America are traveling back to Ann Arbor from all over the world for the group's 150th anniversary. With the group's motto "tradition, camaraderie, and musical excellence" on their minds, more than 500 of The University of Michigan Men's Glee Club's members are coming back, and have already begun rehearsing for a reunion performance to take place on Saturday at 3 p.m. at Hill Auditorium.


Alumni of the U-M Men's Glee Club rehearse in Rackham Auditorium in preparation for Saturday's performance.

Jeremy Peters | Contributor

Singers have been divided into 4 groups, based on the years they were in the club, and each group will perform a few selections, but will come together at the end of the concert as an entire group on stage to end the concert.

The special guest host of the alumni concert on Saturday is Bob McGrath, better known as the character Bob on Sesame Street. McGrath is an alum of the group, joining while getting a degree from what is now called the university's School of Music, Theatre, and Dance.

Tickets to the alumni concert are $5; the annual Spring Concert by the group follows at 8 p.m. later that night, and tickets ($5/$15) will be available for purchase as well.

From the group's beginnings in 1857 to today, the University of Michigan's Men's Glee Club has weathered the ups and downs of its existence as the oldest student organization at the university (indeed even older than the university's football team). The group is not simply a choir at a college, but much more. Students manage the group from top to bottom, save for the musical direction from a member of the faculty, and take care of every detail pertaining to the financial, organizational, and management of a performing arts group that tours both nationally and internationally. Many of the group's members sing with the group for the entirety of their career.

Dr. Paul Rardin, the current director of the group, had the following to say about the reunion: "It's breathtaking to see nearly a third of our living alumni come back to town to sing, and see faces from the group that have recently graduated or we have seen in the crowds at previous performances."

Fans of choral music, men's choruses, or simply anyone with an interest in hearing the power of five hundred male voices should take note and highly consider attending.

Jeremy Peters is a contributor to who is himself an alumnus of the Men's Glee Club.