Melody and Mirth Mark a Milestone for UC Mens Octet
by D. Lyn Hunter, Public Affairs
posted Mar. 4, 1998
The golden harmonies of the UC Mens Octet have been a staple
on campus for 50 years. To celebrate a half-century of antic-filled
a cappella, the group is presenting a gala spring concert Thursday
and Friday, March 12 and 13, at 8 p.m. in Wheeler Auditorium.
Octet alumni from around the country, including founding members,
will be on hand to share memories of their years with the group.
Traditionally, the spring show is a chance for the Octet to sing
new arrangements never performed by past groups. This years show
includes tunes from the Jackson 5, Beach Boys, Madonna and West
The Octet started as an offshoot of what was then known as the
UC Glee Club. Eight senior men from this group, who also sang
together as Cal song leaders, created the Senior Mens Octette
Oski the Bear and the Straw Hat Band were also created that year,
making 1948 a banner year for Cal spirit.
Initially, the club was exclusively for seniors, but admission
opened up to other classes when recruitment became difficult,
hence the name change to UC Mens Octet.
Through the years, the Octet has become a ubiquitous part of university
functions. In addition to campus events and private parties, the
group spans the globe spreading the gospel of Berkeley tradition.
Past travels have taken its members to jolly old England to entertain
the London chapter of the California Alumni Association. This
year the octet hopes to go to Australia.
The group has also produced several CDs. Eight Misbehavin,
their current release, can be purchased at the spring show and
is also available at the ASUC. Tickets for the spring show are
$12 general and $6 students and can be purchased at the Zellerbach
ticket office or by calling 642-9988.
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