The Hummingbirds A Cappella: Love Is Not Our Forte

To be fair to the Hummingbirds, I’m not really the right demographic for their show. I’m not a 15 year-old girl who watches teen comedies on the Disney channel, which is sort of what this show is like in between songs. For the right audiences that’s maybe fun, if they get past the cringe-worthy nature of the show.

These strengths often feel lost on pop songs with subpar beatboxing and with voices that feel more suited to folk and classical styles

With lines like “What better way to complain about our love lives than with song?” and “I would like to dedicate this one to Mr Darcy”, the blunt superficiality and ‘Prince Charming’ rubbish on show can feel a bit too forced and unaware for a girl group in 2016. Not to mention a finale of Sisters Are Doing it for Themselves.

There is talent in the group, with some nice harmonies and some enjoyable renditions of pop songs and fusions of songs, but the girls are at their best when the numbers allow them to be more choir-based. Here in the harmonies they are capable of shining through with strength. But these strengths often feel lost on pop songs with subpar beatboxing and with voices that feel more suited to folk and classical styles. Memorable songs include Stacey’s Mom and Teenage Dirtbag, though the stand out number is an inventive cover of Dissolve by Alt J, with a lovely progressive build with the repeating lyric “she makes the sound the sea makes”.

Enjoyable in parts when the girls play to their strengths, but regrettably hard work between the songs. With so many a cappella groups at the Fringe, the Hummingbirds struggle to be a particularly memorable needle in a rather large haystack. 

Reviews by Dave House

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Performances

Location

The Blurb

You are invited to the Hummies’ sleepover! Join the University of St Andrews' all-female a cappella group The Hummingbirds as they sing a variety of modern pop songs chronicling the many fancies, follies and failures of their complicated – and somewhat unsuccessful – love lives. And where better to sing (and dance) about their numerous heartaches and relationship dilemmas than at an intimate girly sleepover? These girls might not be the best at relationships, but they sure know how to sing away their blues!

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