On song for a festival rich in harmony

HUNDREDS of barbershop singers from all over the world will converge in Limerick during the first weekend of October for an international convention with a difference.

More than 400 singers, representing 25 choruses and quartets from across the world, will take part in the convention, the highlight of the Barbershop calendar.

Barbershop music features old and new songs sung in very distinctive four-part harmony style.

The songs range from modern pop and folk music to old style music hall numbers, all given the unique barbershop treatment.

The Irish Association of Barbershop Singers (IABS) was founded in Ireland in 1988 and has gone from strength to strength since.

Said IABS spokesperson, Jean McConnell: “We’re very excited to be holding our international convention in Limerick and barbershop singing is going from strength to strength. Now there are many local choruses and quarters, both male and female, throughout the country as well as the national ladies barbershop chorus, Ireland Unlimited. It’s set to be a fantastic weekend and we hope that the people of Limerick come out to the UCH to hear some truly uplifting barbershop singing.”

The competitions take place in UCH throughout Friday and Saturday, October 1 and 2, with seven titles to be won, including National Male and Female Quartets, National Male and Female Choruses, International Quartet, International Chorus and Open Entertainment Competition. The Open Entertainment competition, competing for the Joan Kelly Memorial Trophy, will take place in the UCH on Friday, October 1, at 8pm.

“We are inviting all acappella groups, including quartets and choruses, participating in our competitions to enter our evening entertainment competition,” said Jean McConnell, IABS spokesperson. “This is the second year that IABS are running this event. It was hugely successful last year and it will form an important part of our overall 2010 Convention weekend with local entries from the mid-west also hoping to go home with the silverware”


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