Pentatonix performing at the Dos Equis Pavilion in Dallas, Texas on July 26, 2018, with Mitch Grassi, Scott Hoying, Kirstin Maldonado, Kevin "K.O." Olusola, and Matt Sallee.
Three-time Grammy Award-winning and multi-Platinum-selling has sold more than 6.5 million albums and performed for hundreds of thousands of fans at their sold-out shows across the globe. Their YouTube channel boasts more than 13.8 million subscribers, yielding over 2.7 billion video views, and their 2015 self-titled album has been certified gold after debuting #1 on Billboard’s 200.

Additionally, seven of their albums reached the top 10 on Billboard’s 200 chart (2 at #1) and received multiple RIAA certifications for multi-platinum, platinum and gold selling albums and singles. In 2015, the group released its first tour documentary - On My Way Home - and appeared in the feature film Pitch Perfect 2. In 2017, the group released PTX Vol. 4 - Classics which features their Grammy Award-winning performance of “Jolene” with Dolly Parton, as well as an arrangement of the John Lennon classic “Imagine.”

Pentatonix has recently released a deluxe version of their certified Platinum 2016 holiday album A Pentatonix Christmas Deluxe which features a collection of modern and seasonal favorites, a collaboration with Jennifer Hudson and holiday classics such as "Deck The Halls", "Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!", and "Away In A Manger". Pentatonix also returned to NBC with A Very Pentatonix Christmas - their second annual holiday special. (Source: Artist)
Pentatonix took the stage after crowd-pleasing openers Calum Scott and Echosmith for their hometown show- members Scott Hoying, Mitch Grassi, and Kirstin Maldonado grew up together in nearby Arlington, Texas. This created a special environment, as the presence of the trio’s friends and families throughout the audience was felt by many, and their parents were continuously stopped by fans for pictures. Another portion of the crowd was made up of the organizers and attendees of Pentacon, an annual fan-run convention in Dallas dedicated to Pentatonix, running July 27th-30th this year.

Members of Pentatonix also have their own individual professional pursuits. Beatboxer Kevin Olusola has been a member of Triptyq, a hip-hop trio, since 2012, as well as releasing his own various singles and an EP entitled The Renegade in 2015. In 2013, Scott and Mitch created Superfruit, a joint YouTube channel featuring weekly vlogs and musical projects. This eventually led to the release of a full-length Superfruit album, Future Friends, in 2017. The duo went on a North American tour in May and June of 2018, getting back just in time to rehearse for the Pentatonix show seen in Dallas tonight. Kirstie was also busy leading up to the tour, starring as Lauren in the Tony-winning musical Kinky Boots on Broadway from February through May 2018. She also released her own solo EP, L O V E, in 2017. All of the group’s individually talented members came back together this summer to create their biggest and best Pentatonix tour yet. Noticeable contrasts from their previous seven tours included matching outfits, more involved choreography, and a new member- Matt Sallee replaced former bass Avi Kaplan in late 2017.

The show began with an ominous intro and flashing lights behind a curtain, which dropped to reveal Pentatonix. Through the screams of the audience, they went straight into their energetic original titled “Sing”. This was followed by a mix of other originals from their 2015 self-titled album along with covers from their most recent album: PTX Presents: Top Pop, Vol. I, which was released in April 2018. After a new mashup of Zedd’s hits “Stay” and “The Middle,” Scott paused to share a story about the origins of Pentatonix. Scott, Kirstie, and Mitch sang together in high school, and later decided to enter The Sing-Off, an a cappella competition TV show, but they needed a rhythm section. After recruiting bass Avi Kaplan, the trio found beatboxer Kevin on YouTube from his viral cover of “Julie-O,” in which he played the cello and beatboxed at the same time (dubbed “cello-boxing”). Kevin agreed to postpone medical school and join the audition, and Pentatonix was formed. They went on to win Season 3 of The Sing-Off in 2011, propelling them to fame. Kevin performed “Julie-O” tonight for Dallas’ crowd, and Scott explained to the audience that Kevin is the only person in the entire world who can beatbox and play the cello at the same time.

After another Top Pop cover, Pentatonix performed “Daft Punk,” a mashup of seven songs by Daft Punk, a French electronic music duo. This was a crowd favorite, maintaining its momentum from when it originally went viral on YouTube in 2013 (it currently has 284 million views). “Daft Punk” also earned Pentatonix their first of three Grammys in 2015 for ‘Best Arrangement, Instrumental or A Cappella.’ The halfway point of the concert was marked by a wardrobe change during a video transition ornamented with a recording of their original “Rose Gold.” The video transition ended with Pentatonix pushing the audience to “imagine the world we could live in if we were all better to ourselves, to our planet, to our families, and to each other. Imagine.” Fittingly, Pentatonix took the stage once again to perform their moving cover of John Lennon’s “Imagine.” At this point, newest member Matt Sallee shared the story of his journey to Pentatonix, from being a fan in high school to taking the stage with them across the world seven years later. He encouraged the audience to always chase their dreams, stating that he is living proof that they can come true. This led into the performance of “Love You Long Time” from Pentatonix’s first album in 2012, which Matt had watched them perform as a fan.

The next item on the setlist was “Evolution of Rihanna,” which was only released on YouTube several hours before the concert. This seven-minute medley of 38 songs by pop sensation Rihanna took Pentatonix back to their roots- it had been three years since they released an “Evolution” video. This performance was followed by a “throwback medley” featuring the rhythm section- bass Matt Sallee and beatboxer Kevin Olusola. The duo hyped up the crowd with energetic, rhythmic covers of brief sections of Montell Jordan’s “This Is How We Do It” (1995) and Snoop Dogg’s “Drop It Like It’s Hot” (2004), among other throwbacks. This led into the rhythmic intro to Pentatonix’s mashup of Dua Lipa’s “New Rules” and Aaliyah’s 1998 hit “Are You That Somebody,” featured on Top Pop, Vol. I. Next was a new mashup between two original Pentatonix songs- “Cracked” and “Natural Disaster.” They pushed toward the end of the night with their amazingly powerful cover of “Hallelujah,” which has drawn significant attention since its release in 2016. Before leaving the stage, they performed an exciting cover of Demi Lovato’s “Sorry Not Sorry,” complete with an explosion of confetti. Pentatonix returned to the stage for an encore, featuring their cover of the classic “Bohemian Rhapsody” by Queen. They expressed that they had been afraid to arrange this masterpiece for years because they were afraid to mess it up, but the crowd loved it, and it was a great conclusion to the night.

Setlist for the show at the Dos Equis Pavilion
  • Intro / Sing
  • Finesse
  • Attention
  • Can't Sleep Love
  • Havana
  • Stay / The Middle
  • Cello Moment / Perfect
  • Daft Punk
  • Despacito x Shape of You
  • Rose Gold Video Transition
  • Imagine
  • Love You Long Time
  • Evolution of Rihanna
  • New Rules x Are You That Somebody?
  • Cracked / Natural Disaster
  • Hallelujah
  • Sorry Not Sorry
  • Bohemian Rhapsody

Pentatonix was the main act at the Dos Equis Pavilion with guests Echosmith and Calum Scott. The band continues across the United States with the last stop at the Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre in Tinley Park, Illinois on September 16, 2018.

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Review by Kaitlyn Arvesen
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Photos by Ralph Arvesen
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