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Vitamin String Quartet launches first national tour at Miami

The Vitamin String Quartet, performing at Hall Auditorium on Tuesday, Oct. 24, played Prince's “Purple Rain” in front of a royal purple background.
The Vitamin String Quartet, performing at Hall Auditorium on Tuesday, Oct. 24, played Prince's “Purple Rain” in front of a royal purple background.

The lights go down, the audience grows quiet and the Vitamin String Quartet (VSQ) walks onstage. For couple Carla and Sarah Risner, the moment brought them back to their wedding day.

Carla Risner said they discovered VSQ while picking music for their wedding, and having the same songs played that night was a really special experience. Not only were they attending for the sentimental aspect, but because of the added bonus of experiencing “Bridgerton’s” music live.

“They have exceeded any expectation that we had coming here,” Risner said.

According to Miami’s performing art series, before “Bridgerton” helped VSQ reach a global audience, it established classical crossover as a genuine force in contemporary music.

The four string musicians — Wynton Grant, Thomas Lea, Derek Stein and Leah Zeger — started the night with Ariana Grande’s “thank u, next” in front of a hot pink background and transitioned to a Billie Eilish song shortly after. Throughout the night, the background colors shifted depending on the song the group was performing. 

The first “Bridgerton” song of the night was “Dancing on My Own” by Robyn. A few songs later, VSQ graced the audience with “If I Ain't Got You” by Alicia Keys from the show “Queen Charlotte.”

Chi Vo, a senior double majoring in data science and statistics and psychology, went to the event as an avid “Bridgerton” fan and a lover of live music.

“[The performance] really touched my heart, doing the song by Billie Eilish, the happier song, I was getting teary eyed,” Vo said.

A common theme of the night was an infatuation with Eilish, as the group covered tracks like “Bad Guy” and “Happier Than Ever.” In between covers members would occasionally speak to the audience, creating an inclusive feeling. The musicians made it abundantly clear that it wasn’t a classical concert, but something the audience could let loose to and bump heads.

Photo by Taylor Stumbaugh | The Miami Student
Throughout the night the stage lights were constantly switched around to reflect the tone of the songs.

There were quite a few heads bobbing in the audience when “Purple Rain” by Prince came on. The song’s atmosphere was successfully set with a royal purple background.

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After the 10-15 minute intermission, Vitamin String Quartet came back onstage for its remaining 12 songs, starting with “This is Halloween” from Tim Burton's “Nightmare Before Christmas.”

Students were not the only attendees enjoying the orchestral music; there were audience members from Hamilton and the Oxford Community. 

Ailie Anderson, a Hamilton resident, saw the performance advertised on Facebook and thought it would be a fun experience. 

“I enjoy the candlelight concerts and thought this would be similar and something different to do,” Anderson said. “I think it’s great.”