The fading art of barbershop music will return loud and proud to Abbotsford next month, as the Mt. Baker Toppers host a barbershop convention.
The Toppers draw members from across the Fraser Valley and Washington State, and get together to rehearse once a week in Bellingham. They sing a capella, in four-part harmony and in the barbershop tradition. They are “45 strong,” says spokesman Lorne Downton.
The convention will be held March 30 and 31 at the Abbotsford Arts Centre. On the Friday, a quartet contest will be held at 7 p.m. On Saturday at 10:30 a.m., the chorus competition will be held.
The singers compete to move on to the Evergreen District contest in Spokane, Washington, which will see singers from B.C., Alberta, Washington, Alaska, Oregon, Idaho and Montana compete.
The ultimate goal is to qualify for the international convention, which will be held in Portland in July. There they would compete against choruses and quartets from New Zealand, Australia, the U.K. and North America and other places.
Saturday will bring an evening show at 7 p.m., featuring the top three choruses and top three quartets from the convention. Also performing will be the top seniors quartet – whose members are 55-plus – and the top novice quartet, which must have three of its four members having never competed on stage before. The headliners of the show will be the reigning Evergreen District Champions, the New Originals, who are also from northern Washington State.
The public is invited to all events. Tickets are $15 for each of the quartet and chorus competitions, and $20 for the evening show, available at the door.
More information is available at www.topperschorus.org.