Clear Dot

Do I need to read music?
You do not need to be able to read music. Exercises and singing during the lessons will not require you to read music. Although, for those that can, they may find it helpful. Should you have interest in the chorus, we provide learning tracks with your part predominant. We will do the same for any songs we work on during the lessons.

I cannot attend all of the lessons, is it still worthwhile attending?
Absolutely! While it would be great if you could attend all of the classes to maximize the benefit of the program, each class is intended to be independent of one another.

Is the program open to women?
Not at this time. We anticipate full classes and, since we are a men's chorus, we are inviting only men at this time.

How do I know what part I sing?
If you do not know what part you sing, we can provide a simple voice test of your vocal range to determine your part.

I have no musical background, but I'm very interested!
Interest is the key! We only ask that you bring your best attitude, pack a little patience and plan to have a great time. We will provide everything else, which will include sheet music (even if you cannot read music, it includes the words!!) and learning tracks for your part.

I'm an accomplished singer, why should I attend
No singer is ever done learning. Every good singer continues to get coaching. In this case, our form of a cappella music harmonizes around the melody in the 2nd voice. One of the hallmarks of this type of music is blending the voices so that they create multiple overtones, something not everyone has experienced, even the best singers.

What is the cost?
The lessons are free. After each lesson, you will have a chance to sing with the chorus and then enjoy some refreshments. Should you find you enjoy this type of music and wish to continue singing with the chorus, at some point after the conclusion of the lessons, then you would be expected to become a dues paying member of the Barbershop Harmony Society and the Statesmen Chorus.

What should I expect from the evening?
The evening will begin with greetings from everyone and introductions of our guests. The guests and chorus will briefly warm up together and then the lessons will proceed in a separate room. Following the lessons, there is an opportunity to get to know the guys in the chorus and enjoy some refreshments. You are welcome to depart after that, or remain and enjoy the balance of the rehearsal with the chorus.

Will you provide sheet music?
YES! We will provide sheet music and learning tracks with your part predominant.

What do I need to bring to maximize the benefit?
You may wish to record the lessons and if you do, please bring a recording device. Since you will do a lot of singing during the lesson, drink lots of water throughout the day of the lesson. Start early in the day or even the day before. This will help you bring your best voice. You may wish to bring a pencil or a pen in case you want to mark up your music. We can also provide electronic copies of the music in case you wish to use a tablet.

Individual or group instruction?
Both, but mainly this will be group instruction. But we will work individually where and when necessary or appropriate, such as when we need to determine which part you sing.

How long will the evening last?
Lessons will last one hour. Including the warm ups, time with the chorus and social time (refreshments), not longer than 2 hours.

What kind of music is involved?
We sing a cappella music, which is unaccompanied. We sing 4 part harmony with the melody in the 2nd highest voice. We use a pitch pipe for our starting pitch. We sing Barbershop arrangements and non-barbershop arrangements and our music selections include doo wop, spirituals, love ballads, swing tunes, driving up tunes, religious tunes, patriotic tunes and Holiday/Christmas tunes.

Do we need to do anything between classes?
In order to maximize the benefit of the classes, it would be very helpful to practice in between classes. Practice singing along with the learning tracks we provide. If you choose to record the classes, review your recording and reinforce anything that you find interesting and helpful. Our chorus members similarly rehearse what we worked on at the most recent rehearsal in preparation for the next rehearsal.

Can I win America's Got Talent after taking these lessons?
That is up to you! We will give you a lot of information on how to sing well. Find a song you like, that fits your vocal range. Then practice, practice, practice, maybe even get some additional coaching on the song of your choice and then give it a whirl!

May I bring my son?
Yes, it is never too early to learn to sing well.

Isn't quarteting a hallmark of Barbershop singing?
Four part harmony is the actual hallmark and it is sung by both quartets and choruses. The four parts are Tenor, Lead (melody), Baritone and Bass. In a chorus, multiple members sing one of the 4 parts.

Will we have an opportunity to sing in a quartet?
During one of our lessons, we will have a demonstration quartet there to assist. Ask to sing with them! Another option is to ask members of the chorus, during social time, to sing with you in a quartet.

How can we sing in a quartet, when we do not know a song?
One special part of Barbershop Harmony is how we end each song. We add a piece to "complete" the song, called a "tag". A very fun part of the hobby is to simply sing a tag or several tags. Most quartets or experienced members know a number of tags. Ask to sing in a quartet and they will most likely teach you a tag so you may enjoy the fun singing with them!