Barbershop Sounds

A concert of Barbershop music took place on May 18th.

Four blokes dressed in red and white, so that is what you expected? Not so, not so at all! Out trooped four charming ladies – Joanne, Phillipa, Catherine and Aoifin attired in dark blue style with light blue, or maybe it was turquoise, scarves. For the first half of their programme they soloed and each is an accomplished singer. I must add they enjoyed some beautiful piano accompaniment from Elaine Brennan. Of Joanne Hammond’s two pieces I liked her interpretation of Schumann’s ‘Der Nussbaum’ most, where she sang beautifully gently and our bells chimed in without any distraction. Of Philippa’s two pieces I really liked Elgar’s ‘Where corals lie’ the best, which gave us some lovely singing in the lower register. Catherine’s Bach ‘Qui sedes ad dextram Patris’ called for skilful and adroit singing and this is what we were to enjoy. In Aoifin’s Gounod ‘Faites- lui mes aveux’ we were to hear the story of a boy with some lines in recitative style and clearly Aoifin enjoys relating a story.

The second half of the programme started with two duets. Joanne and Philippa gave us a lovely gentle Offenbach ‘Barcarolle’ followed by Aoifin and Catherine’s Rossini’s ‘The Cat Duet’. The disguised performers put the story over well but it was a pity that the dog at the back of the church failed to cause a fracas. The programme ended with four relatively modern pieces sung by the quartet and my favourite was the Billy Joel ‘Lullaby’ with some beautiful harmony singing. The harmonisations of ‘Mister Sandman’ and ‘Diamonds are a girl’s best friend’ were to me less well composed and this is no criticism of the performers. Then we heard ‘I will follow him’ by Stole & Del Roma with some extraordinary movement between the ladies and a flourish to end a most enjoyable evening .We congratulate them all, and their singing teacher Katy Kelly.

Bobby Barden