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October 15, 2008 > Fundraiser features Hookslide

Fundraiser features Hookslide

By Praveena Raman

Mission San Jose High School's (MSJHS) performing arts club, Universal Performers will be hosting Hookslide, an A Cappella vocal band from San Francisco, for a fundraiser on Friday October 17. Hookslide is a nationally known a capella group that has performed in over 200 events all over the country such as the America Sings festival, Fleet Week in San Francisco, San Francisco Giants, and Amgen International.

Mayank Thanawala, one of Hookslide's four singers, is an alumnus of Mission San Jose High School (MSJHS). Thanawala's interest in singing was supported and developed by the MSJHS performing arts department. He continued singing in an A Capella group while at Cornell University and then at Stanford University. After graduating and while working as a Software engineer Thanawala started looking around to sing in a band. He mentions that this proved to be harder as "bands either wanted someone who could scream rather than sing, or someone who could really command the stage which I couldn't at that time."

Finally Thanawala saw an email for an audition which sounded interesting. However when he responded, he was sent a long questionnaire. Thanawala wrote that if they wanted to find out how committed he would be to just ask him. "I was shocked when they called me back, and I put on my most polite tone. And when I finally sang with them, at my audition, I knew instantly they had something special."

Paul (Bud) Anderson, founder of Hookslide, had been working for a music agency in San Francisco which was getting requests for vocal groups to perform at events. After auditioning 40 singers, Bud found Jon and George the first two members of his A Capella group. Soon Thanawala was added and the group began with four members. Names such as comfy monkey, thump truck, goathanger, rocktious and Hookshot were vetoed before they unanimously settled on Hookslide.

This past June, Thanawala reconnected with Anne Riley, the performing arts director at MSJHS as they planned the retirement party for Choral Director Lee Glover. Following that event, the need for funds to continue motivated Thanawala decided to give back to his Alma Mater. He wants people to understand that they can keep music in their lives, even at a professional level alongside a professional career.

Friday, October 17
8:00 p.m.
Mission San Jose High School
Little Theatre
41717 Palm Avenue, Fremont
(510) 668-6077

Reserved seats: $10
General Admission: $8
UP Members: $6.50

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