The Boston A Cappella Scene

Diana Galeano, Shams Ahmed, Avi Kaplan, Ben Bram, Tracy RobertsonI moved to Boston for the a cappella scene after attending the first ever BOSS. I know it sounds crazy, but it’s the first thing I noticed when I got off the plane: a flashmob of 66 people broke out into Augustana’s “Boston”. Or was it Boston’s “More Than A Feeling”? But really, Boston welcomed me and my love of a cappella with open arms (that’s Journey, right? I mean, I was Journey-ing so, ok…)

I’m constantly in awe of what this city has to offer. Not only is it absolutely stunning, once the mounds of snow that predate the birth of Christ have melted, the history embedded in the once-upon-a-time cow paths will eventually intertwine so you’ll find yourself at the intersection of A Cappella Street and Abundance Way.

Never have I encountered more collegiate a cappella groups in a 5 mile radius, let alone a single college. I live right next to Tufts University, the very campus we’ll be inhabiting come BOSS weekend. At about 11,000 enrolled (almost equally split between undergrad/grad), Tufts has 8 a cappella groups on campus.

Just a few miles down the long and winding road in Waltham is Brandeis with 10. Down the street in Cambridge is a little known college, Harvard University (you may have heard of it) which has 20 and MIT has 6, according to my research. Folks, I’m not even into Boston yet. Boston University has 12, Emerson has 4, Boston College and Northeastern University each have 8, just to name a few.

Boston is also the home to many professional and semi-pro/CAL groups! Pro groups such as Ball In The House, Five O’Clock Shadow, Musae, and Overboard have all called Boston home. Semi-pro/CAL groups such as Bostonality, Sound Off, The Pow Arrangers, Redline, Fermata Town and Collective Measures are sure to be found busking at the Public Garden or gigging around town weekly if not more.

Did we talk about high school a cappella yet? Last year, we had our very first high school group open for the BOSS collegiate competition. Falconize from Danvers High School was only 7 months old and they opened BOSS 2014. Cambridge Ringe and Latin School has 4 groups on its campus, not to mention groups that are constantly popping up in high school campuses by student volition. These kids know where it’s at.

Boston is exploding with a cappella. EX.PLO.DING. Remember when I told you Boston A Cappella welcomed me with open arms? That’s an understatement. I arrange/direct for a co-ed collegiate group, sing with/arrange for a semi-pro CAL group, and teach/arrange 4th-9th grade a cappella on the weekends.

If you’re looking for a way to connect in the Boston A Cappella scene, your best bet is to get your cute little tuchus over to BOSS April 10-12. It’ll revolutionize your aca-life. 🙂


Diana Galeano, the BOSS 2015 Outreach and AcaBomb Coordinator, is a graduate of Florida State University where she studied music education with an emphasis in secondary choral education. While at FSU, she sang with ICCA Southern Champions, the AcaBelles. Since graduating, she has worked as a high school chorus teacher, as a director at FSU’s Summer Music Camps, and as Assistant Director of A Cappella Academy in Los Angeles, CA. Diana now lives in Somerville, MA where she directs and arranges for collegiate and high school a cappella groups, sings with the Tanglewood Festival Chorus and Sound Off A Cappella, as well as teaches K-8 music.

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