It’s a Rap!
CHESTERTOWN, MD—When the Office of Admissions at Washington College asked members of the campus singing group WACappella to collaborate on a music video, the students couldn’t say “Yes!” fast enough. Now their “Glad You Chose Us” video, featuring WACappella’s original take on rap star Macklemore’s popular “Can’t Hold Us,” is the most widely watched Washington College video ever. Released at 5 p.m. on Friday, January 24, it had amassed more than 10,000 YouTube views from 75 countries by the following Monday afternoon. By February 1, the number was up to nearly 16,000, and by the end of that week another thousand views had rolled in.
WACappella members wrote the lyrics and worked with Vice President for Enrollment Management Satyajit Dattagupta, his executive assistant Stephan Jordan (a 2012 grad who sang in WACappella), and independent video producer Chris Niswonger to develop background settings and choreography. The goal was to create an original song about Washington College that would boost the school’s profile and encourage more prospective students to visit and apply. A bonus has been the pride and excitement it has evoked among current students and alumni, who love seeing the campus, the streets of Chestertown and the Chester River captured in the fast-paced scenes.
The video was filmed over Fall Break in mid October. The members of WACappella who stayed on campus to rap and dance for the camera included Emily Ball, Todd Cooley, Luke DiFabbio, Olivia Donaldson, Emily Hall, Megan Harrison, Ryan Holtschneider, Pat Kinsella, Sean Kraus, Karyn Krupsaw, Mike Liberto, Bennett Lloyd, Ryan Miranda, Emily O’Donnell, Obella Obbo, Mallory Staub, Nicholas Staub, Ryan Stevens, Jade Walter and Emma Way. The final audio was tracked in early December with the assistance of sound engineer Noah Berg.
Dattagupta, who had collaborated with videographer Niswonger on projects when both worked for the University of Rochester, is thrilled with the quality and the message of this latest production. “WACappella is a fantastic group, and the video captures what Washington College is all about,” he says. “The energy and enthusiasm of our students is genuine. They love this place.”
Students react to the new video as it premiers in the Admissions Visitors Center.