There's a large [over 100] women's barbershop harmony group based in my town. They're really good, too. Apparently they're the current international champions. They've also been worldwide champs four other times. Here's a picture I grabbed from a different group, the Sweet Adenoids or something from Nashville. It doesn't matter, the groups all look alike: high gloss lips, sixties hair, sequined outfits, toothy smiles, forty-ish faces, flabby arms. Nothing says women's barbershop harmony like sassy, middle-aged women. See how the picture demonstrates to prospective members that you can be short, tall, fat or thin, and there will still be a dress that fits!!!
I thought about joining my town's hot-shit group over twenty years ago, but funny how kids, work, and exhaustion get in the way. However, I'm definitely ready now. Footloose and flabby fancy free. I actually have time to do something besides watch Law and Order re-runs. But I decided that joining that superstar championship group isn't what I had in mind. They're already winners. There's no place else for them to go but down. I wanted a group where I could feel like my half-baked harmonies could make a real contribution.
Enough with the laughter, people. I may be no American Idol, but I know about winning singing contests. Do, too. Thanks to me my sorority won Northwestern's small group May Sing competition back in the day, singing the Chordettes' O Baby Mine. I not only sang, but I arranged and directed. Everybody wore bowler derbies, white shirts, bow ties and mustaches. Except me. I came out wearing a barrel. And started it all off -- "O Baby Mine. . ." I also managed to weave the alma mater into the middle of the song, which was an especially excellent suck-up-to-the-judges touch. We won the next year too, singing the Hawaiian war chant. Yep, me again. Directing, Arranging. Singing. I found out that May SIng is now a lip sync competition. That just sucks.
Anyway, as luck would have it, I was at an assisted living fair courtesy of the senior center, trolling for candy, cookies, fancy hors d'oeuvres, veggies, chips, dip and a Coke as I pretended to be interested in all the different booths. For some reason, there was a representative from a ladies barbershop group hustling new members. She practically tackled me as I walked by. "You're alive and breathing, why don't you join us!" So I took her card and went to a rehearsal. Based on the amount of white hair, I was one of the youngest there. A couple of people were in wheelchairs. I saw four canes. A few noticeable limps. How could I not join?
So, I've made the commitment. I'll find out in a couple of more weeks if I'm invited into the group. Apparently you may be halt or lame, but you have to be able to sing. I wonder who does their choreography?
Cross your fingers.