Based at the small southeastern Minnesota liberal arts school St. Olaf College, the 75-member St. Olaf Choir celebrates its centennial with a tour that places works by Bach, Mendelssohn and Palestrina alongside spirituals and folk songs. One of the nation's pioneering a cappella groups, the choir points to its past and future by performing selections from each of the three conductors that preceded current director Anton Armstrong, along with two new pieces commissioned by Armstrong especially for this program.
The Clef Hangers, meanwhile, are a 16-member, all-male ensemble that mines modern pop and college radio charts—Adele, Wiz Khalifa, Coldplay, Old Crow Medicine Show and Bon Iver, for starters—along with a handful of hits from previous decades in a format more typical of the current college tradition. Founded in 1977, the Clefs are UNC's oldest a cappella troupe, counting "American Idol" finalist Anoop Desai and singer-songwriter Brendan James amongst their many alumni. Tickets run $28–$36 for Thursday's 7:30 p.m. performance by St. Olaf Choir; Friday's Clef Hangers concert begins at 8 p.m. with a $14 ticket charge. —Spencer Griffith