Barbershop Quartet Preservation Association

2010 Chicago Festival

The 2010 festival of the BQPA “Pioneers” was held in Chicago on September 8-11, with about 100 enthusiastic quartet singers ringing chords everywhere. The Ramada O‟hare “Woodshed Room” was alive with sound on Wednesday evening with a dozen early arrivals.

Thursday morning had a quartet on the Mt Prospect golf course arranged by Dave Brady in his usual competent fashion. In the afternoon, the BQPA/Pioneers Board of Directors had its semi-annual meeting while more singers were arriving.

The “Woodshed Room” was full of quartetting for the rest of the evening. On Friday, 4 foursomes played the Mt Prospect golf course, singing on every tee, and 3 or 4 putting the very fast greens that Dave Brady warned us about. What a great golf outing! Thanks, Dave.

Friday afternoon had the “Luck-of-the-draw” quartets forming and practising for their big chance at the contest. The evening show had about 75 in the audience as the 12 quartets sang. The FUN 4 (Tom Noble, tenor; Tom Parrish, lead; Don Doss, bass, and Jim Milner, bari) won with a spirited rendition of “Wait „til the Sun Shines, Nellie”. There was lots of interesting themes in the contest, and great fun was had by all. The woodshed room went on „til all hours.

Saturday had the woodshed room active all day, and the Parade of Quartet show was very entertaining as always, with MC Ray Henders and his inumerable Irish jokes. Six quartets entertained: IMPACT, a Sweet Adelines quartet preparing for International contest in Seattle. ARBORS, GADZOOKS, HEAT WAVE, JUKE BOX, filled out the program. The FUN 4 did their acceptance/swan song with “Lida Rose”, and Tom Noble‟s wife, June singing the obligato an octave low.

The BQPA/Pioneers had 10 new members-for-life sign up, and now has a membership of over 230. Although attendance was down somewhat from last year, the enthusiasm for old time quartet singing is high, and we look forward to the festival in April, 2011, in Arizona.