Male acapella group sings final school-year performance

The Glee Club performed their tour set list for a Notre Dame audience at the Leighton Concert Hall on Friday, March 22. The concert was well attended by students, families, and Glee Club alumni.

The Notre Dame Glee Club was founded in 1915, making it the oldest glee club at a Catholic university. Their musical selection includes both religious and secular songs. 

For many of the 60 singers, this is their first experience in a choral setting. Though members do need to have musical knowledge, a passion to learn and grow with other members of the group is considered in who they select. Glee Club can be viewed as a brotherhood, since, according to their website, “membership in the Glee Club is defined by great friendships and unforgettable memories.” 

This concert’s set list featured several spiritual, cultural, reflective, and classical choral pieces. These constituted “a collection of [Glee Club’s] best songs,” according to sophomore member Joe Whelpley. 

The concert began with classic Glee Club staples: “And So it Goes” and “You are the New Day.”

Next, the Glee Club performed two compositions from 2013. The section began with “Gagòt,” a Haitian Creole song which describes the chaos and volatility of life and ends in resolve to fight each moment’s battle well. It ended with a rendition of the “Salve Regina,” from which the motto of Our Lady’s university is drawn.

The following two sections bore a more reflective tone. They featured scriptural-based Lenten motets as well as melancholy pieces that meditated on death in war, most notably a letter that an Iraq War Veteran wrote to his wife, young son, and unborn baby to be opened if he should die.

The first half concluded with a performance of Franz Biebl’s “Ave Maria.”

Following intermission, the Glee Club presented a series of American originals, Jazz classics, and Irish traditionals. A variety of songs were featured, including soundtrack pieces from West Side Story and Disney’s Hercules; “An American Tune” by Paul Simon; Tom Lehrer’s comical “The Elements”; Chuck Berry’s “Route 66”; and “Danny Boy.” 

The Undertones, a subgroup of the Glee Club, also performed a rendition of “How Deep Is Your Love,” a classic song popularized by The Bee Gees.

In its entirety, the set list explored many different genres and moods, allowing the audience to experience chaos and peace, sorrow and joy, longing and contentment. “I was joyfully taken from moving, slow pieces to upbeat fun songs,” freshman Asher Martin remarked, continuing, “Overall, the Glee Club did an outstanding job throughout the whole concert.”

The Glee Club closed their performance with classic renditions of Notre Dame’s timeless anthems, inviting all the Glee Club alumni present to join them on stage as they sung the Glee Club Alma Mater “Notre Dame We Hail Thee,” the Notre Dame Alma Mater, and the Notre Dame Victory March.

Audience reactions to the concert were overwhelmingly positive, particularly among first-time attendees. Sophomore Joseph Truluck commented, “I have never been to a Glee Club Concert before, and while I had only heard good things, I was a little skeptical if they were deserving of boasting around their jackets all over the place.” He continued, “What I found was loud and energetic show tunes, humor, acting, and beautifully somber and sad melodies. Glee Club is sick!”

Another freshman shared with the Rover, “The Glee Club was not only proficient in the performance of their pieces, but also in the thematic ordering of their show. I would definitely see them again!”

While the Spring Concert was their last performance with all students on campus, Glee Club will sing during commencement weekend for those in South Bend for graduation. The Commencement Concert will be held on Saturday, May 18 in Leighton Concert Hall. 

 Daniel Rueda-Ramirez is a freshman from Baumer Hall, majoring in Business Analytics and theology. When he is not studying or singing with the Liturgical Choir, he can probably be found playing foosball in the CoMo lounge. You can email him at

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Photo Credit: Notre Dame Glee Club Instagram