Barbershop Singing Convention, October 2015 officially launched.
Quartets and choruses to converge on Castlebar from around the globe!
The Irish Association of Barbershop Singers (IABS) recently launched their 2015 Convention in fine vocal harmony at an evening of singing and much banter. The event was launched by Maire Hunt, Chairperson of IABS, and Edward Horkan, represented the Mayo International Choral Festival (Chairman), the working team on the ground who will assist with the running of the event. The national award winning female Barbershop quartet - Note-Orious 4 and also the sizzling Sandbars male quartet provided a taste of what's to come in October - and boy were they in top vocal form!
Maire Hunt said “We are delighted to be bringing our celebration of Barbershop Singing to Castlebar this year. We have great interest from a lot of overseas groups who want to come to the West of Ireland. Our big announcement is that we can confirm that Storm Front, one of the premier quartets in the USA, will be our guests at the 2015 Convention”. She also thanked the Mayo International Choral Festival for their ongoing help, the Royal Theatre, the TF Royal Hotel and Harlequin Hotel for their assistance with the launch.
Edward Horkan, stated that, as Chairperson of Mayo International Choral Festival and on behalf of the committee, he was delighted to welcome Maire Hunt and the Barbershop Singers to the official launch of The IABS Convention and is looking forward to an extremely successful event this October.
Pat Jennings who spoke on behalf of the Royal Theatre and Martina Nicholson from The Harlequin Hotel said that the team was eager to show the Barbershop delegates true Mayo hospitality throughout their stay in Castlebar.
Michael Baynes, Castlebar tourism and events coordinator, expressed the importance of so many visitors coming to Castlebar over the IABS weekend and what a fantastic opportunity it was for both the Barbershop delegates and the people of Mayo to have such a wonderful convention in the county town. He thanked IABS for deciding to host their convention in Castlebar.
Every year the Irish Association of Barbershop Singers (IABS) hold Quartet and Chorus competitions for National and International Barbershop Singing in different locations around Ireland. While the emphasis is on competitions, it also impacts the streets and nightlife of Castlebar, generating a significant boost to the local economy. Castlebar can expect top quality concerts, and a host of free performances, taking place at key locations across the town on a Barbershop Trail.
All events are open to the public and the evening concerts are the highlight of the weekend, when the award winners take to the stage! Barbershop groups from many countries travel each year to enjoy the Irish convention including from the U.S.A., England, Scotland, Wales, Holland, Finland and Sweden.
The internationally renowned event is being hosted by Mayo International Choral Festival, who contacted IABS in 2013 to consider hosting the event in Castlebar, and subsequently invited the IABS committee to have one of their meetings in Castlebar, where they experienced first hand the hospitality and friendliness of Mayo people, as well as performance and accommodation facilities.
The Irish Association of Barbershop Singers was founded in Offaly in 1988 and promotes the tradition of barbershop singing in Ireland. The first Irish Barbershop Convention was held in Birr in 1989. Since then a dedicated and growing number of Barbershop enthusiasts have ensured the growing popularity of this very distinctive four-part harmony a cappella style of singing. There are many studies and theories relating to the history of Barbershop, and many believe that, as the name implies, it started in barbershops in the USA, while people were waiting their turn for a haircut or shave.
The barbershop soon became the place to hang out, and the singing continued in the streets after the barbershop closed for the day. By the early 1900s, barbershop had become immensely popular, and no show was complete without a Barbershop Quartet. The influence of barbershop music on other forms of popular music has been profound. Frank Sinatra sang in a barbershop quartet before he became famous as a solo singer. The vocal quartets of bands such as those of Tommy Dorsey and Glenn Miller were also greatly influenced by the barbershop style. Close harmony was the hallmark of many pop groups such as the Beach Boys and the Four Seasons, and is very popular today with many singers and groups.
Castlebar, Thursday 1st - Sunday 4th October 2015.
Or visit: www.iabsconvention.com
Tickets to the concerts, open to the public, available at a later date.
'Storm Front' - special guests from the USA