Get a whiff of this cool act

The Whiffenpoofs line-up for 2014.
The Whiffenpoofs line-up for 2014. PHOTO SUPPLIED

Get a whiff of this cool act

They’ve entertained presidents, appeared on TV shows such as Saturday Night Live and Glee, and now America’s best-loved and oldest male collegiate acapella group is heading to Temple Town.

The Whiffenpoofs of Yale University will perform at the Victoria Angkor Resort and Spa on July 25 and 27.

Founded in 1909, the group, whose line-up changes annually, is made up of 14 Yale students in their senior year. Cole Porter was among their most famous alumni, and to this day the Whiffs still often perform his songs in tribute.

The new line-up of Whiffenpoofs have now started their world tour, and this year an extra country has been added to the itinerary. Taking in 27 countries over 92 days, the group will come to Siem Reap via Cape Town, Kathmandu and Mumbai. Other destinations along the way include Bangkok, Tokyo and Sydney, before heading to Queenstown, New Zealand, where the tour will end.

Whiffenpoof and tenor Nathaniel Doquist says the group is thrilled to be returning to Siem Reap for the fourth year.

“We’ve sung almost 200 concerts since we began our year in August 2013, so we've been working towards this world tour for months,” he says.

“Cambodia is often a stop on the Whiffs' tour for a few reasons – it's a place all of us want to see, and we always received such a warm welcome from both the hotel we stay at and the audiences we sing for.”

Each of the hour-long concerts will feature a repertoire of around 30 songs, including several new arrangements.

“Our new album features 11 debut recordings,” Doquist says. “Every year the Whiffs try and arrange some new songs to add to the repertoire.”

Doquist says that Siem Reap audiences can particularly look forward to the group’s new renditions of Pete Seeger’s If I Had a Hammer, and 1960s hit The House of the Rising Sun by The Animals.

A typical Whiffs show will include a mix of Broadway show tunes, traditional Yale songs and hits from across the decades, from numbers like Don’t Let the Sun Go Down on Me by Elton John, to Michael Bublé’s Haven’t Met You Yet.

The Whiffenpoofs will perform at the Victoria’s ‘Thank God it’s Friday’ happy hour on Friday July 25 from 5.30pm-6pm, and 6.30pm-7pm – tickets will cost $12 including two drinks.

The second performance will be at a barbecue buffet dinner on July 27, with tickets costing $30 including a welcome cocktail at 7pm.

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