Capital Connection, a Ladies Barbershop chorus are HAMC’s guest choir at our annual autumn concert at Watersmeet, Rickmansworth on 21st October 2018.

If you want a sneak preview, they are performing at Ickenham Village Hall on 10th June. Find further details, including how to get tickets, on this poster. Don’t wait too long as there were only 40 tickets left on 30th May.

A west London Ladies Barbershop Choir, whose philosophy is providing entertainment of the highest quality. They sing a wide repertoire from Adele and Broadway to Bach. Formed in 1970, they have around 50 singers. Like many Barbershop groups, they regularly enter competitions.

What is Barbershop?

Barbershop is relatively simple melodies, sung in four-part harmonies, without instruments. Its origins are obscure and often debated. Some think it may come from African-American improvisations of the nineteenth century and share its origin with jazz. American barbershops were formed at this time and became social and musical centres for men. Others argue that it began earlier in England, as a form of entertainment for men waiting for a shave. Barbers traditionally had a role as musicians.

Whatever its origins, it has evolved over time. Barbershop became very popular during the Vaudeville period between 1900 and 1919. in the 1940s, a revival marked the start of the modern era of barbershop. Traditionally it was for male voices, either a quartet or a chorus. The second tenor usually takes the lead, singing the melody line. The first tenor harmonizes above the melody and the baritone and bass harmonize below it.

Is Ladies’ Barbershop unusual?

The Ladies Association of British Barbershop Singers (LABBS) began in 1976 and has grown to 50 clubs and over 2000 members. They also have a Youth Chorus called the Ivy League. Many countries have female barbershop associations. There are also international organisations, such as Sweet Adelines International, which is currently advertising its 72nd Convention and Competition.

Looking forward to the 21st October at Watersmeet – it should be an interesting juxtaposition.