YALE'S FIRST ALL-WOMEN'S ORGANIZATION
The New Blue was founded in 1969, the same year that Yale University first admitted undergraduate women – making us not only Yale's first women's a cappella group, but its oldest women's organization of any kind. We're honored to sing with women and people of non-binary and expansive genders since 2020. We hail from a rich musical history dating back 50 years, and we hope to always stand (and sing!) as a proud, living symbol of change at Yale.
In 1969, Fenno Heath, Bill Harwood, and Jim Weber of the Yale Glee Club held the first auditions for a brand new all-women's a cappella singing group. The eleven women who auditioned were accepted into the group. With a Pitch and a Business Manager assigned, and a single arrangement from Fenno, the women were on their own. These dynamic women soon dubbed themselves "The New Blue," a name representing a new face of Yale, recasting the mold of Yale's "Old Blue."
At first, it was difficult for The New Blue to be taken seriously. When male a cappella quipped, "the new who?," the group released their first album entitled Since You Asked. While much of the male musical community was "skeptical or downright hostile," as a founding member recalled, the New Blue managed to organize and fund its first tours to Cornell University, Chicago, and Florida. The repertoire grew, and our sound became richer and more innovative. And since Since You Asked, we have produced seven CDs, featuring an ever-changing repertoire exclusively arranged by members. Our 30th Anniversary CD, "Can't Stop," was the recipient of the Contemporary A Cappella Society's award for Best Female Collegiate Album.
As of 2019, the New Blue has traveled from Paris to Hong Kong, St. Louis to Singapore, Miami to London, Texas to Turkey, and beyond. We were the first of Yale's a cappella groups to collaborate and perform with the first a cappella group formed at Yale's NUS (National University of Singapore) campus in 2014. In the past few years, the New Blue has delighted audiences worldwide and has sung for former presidents George Bush and Barack Obama.