Lowkey Treble Hits the Right Notes


Annie Burdiak, Staff Writer

When news hit that Lake Forest High School’s first-ever a cappella group, Lowkey Treble, would be making their debut concert at the annual talent show, they almost immediately became the most anticipated act of the night.

The screams that followed their performance assured that the group more than lived up to the lofty expectations.

To earn their spot, the group had to work overtime; they had formed only a week before auditions. However, even before the group was formed, the idea to create an a cappella group sprouted from the minds of theatre director Joe Aquino, who first discovered his passion for a cappella in college, and four senior girls devoted to music.

“I wanted to start a group here because I felt like it was something that could be super successful at LFHS, and I was super shocked that it didn’t exist already. I had been talking about it since a week or two after I started here,” Aquino said.

However, it would have been difficult for the group to really take off if the four seniors didn’t run with the idea.

Senior Nikole Tzioufas, one of the founding members, said she joined because it wasn’t a typical musical ensemble. Those who auditioned didn’t have to be enrolled in a music class at school. They weren’t judged based on their prior musical achievements. All that mattered was their audition and how they scored.

“We wanted to make sure that music can be inclusive for everyone in the high school so everyone feels like they have something they can go to if they’re not in choir,” Tzioufas said.

Even though it represented a significant time commitment, “this group is probably my favorite thing I’ve done throughout the course of my four years at LFHS, and I can honestly say that it’s better than any ensemble group that I’ve participated in because I think Joe especially makes it such a welcoming environment for everyone,” said Tzioufas.

According to Aquino, this family that he brought together is not just full of singers, but triple threats as well.

“You really have to be a true triple threat to be in a cappella because there is choreography involved; there’s a showman aspect to it and performing, but you also have to sing technically accurate,” Aquino said.

For the members of the group, singing a cappella has become less of an after-school activity where they simply go through the motions, but something much more meaningful — despite their short time together.

Senior and founding member Rana Muratoglu reminisced on a day that had been a turning point for her on her musical path.

“Joe came in later, and we could just tell that he wasn’t feeling 100%. He looked emotionally drained,” she said. “The first thing he says is ‘I don’t know about you guys, but I could really use some music right now.’ After he said that, I realized that was my reason for being in this group — because it’s not an obligation, it’s a passion.”