Is Revolutionary Music Group Pentatonix No More?


Emma Bauer, Staff Writer

Pentatonix is a group of five a capella singers, the victors of the 2011 season of the show Sing Off.

Baritone Scott Hoying, tenor Mitch Grassi, mezzo-soprano Kirstin Maldonado, beatboxer/celloist Kevin Olusola, and bass Avi Kaplan, are distinguished and loved worldwide for their unique sound and uncanny abilities. They are charismatic on and off stage, claiming the loyalty of millions of fans around the globe with tours, several albums, and plenty of awards for their years of hard work.

Their name also has a unique meaning. “Pentatonix” is derived from the term “pentatonic scale,” referring to a set of five notes in the same octave; there are five members in the group.

But is it still Pentatonix now that Avi Kaplan is leaving?

There has been quiet speculation among the fan base — as there is for any relatively long standing music group — of how long they will really stay together, and who would leave, if anyone, even before now.

Kaplan made the announcement in early May of 2017 in a video with the rest of the group. The tone was obviously somber, as his close friends — his family — heard him thank fans for their support.

But why did he leave? In the video, he explained how the pace of his life while he was a part of Pentatonix was too fast. Kaplan claimed he had been struggling with it for a while and had been considering leaving before he finally made the choice. While it was hard for fans to hear, and undoubtedly hard for him himself, he knows what is best for him and his life.

What is even more sad is the fans that do not support and/or bash Kaplan for his decision. He is hardworking and continues to thrive as an artist, even releasing an album with the group The Sequoias. Kaplan has been working with both groups since before April of this year while Pentatonix was preparing for tour.

It is clear that albeit this move has been difficult for many, Kaplan is more content where he is now. You do not have to be a fan of him, but if you are, it is important that he is happy, no matter what he is doing and wherever his career takes him.

These sorts of things happen all the time, and it should not be seen as a bad thing; it should be seen as evolution, which is necessary for all things to survive. Both Pentatonix and Avriel and the Sequoias will continue to be prospering facets of the music industry.