I had a very eventful weekend. About 9 or 10 months ago I joined a women’s barbershop chorus called the Pride of Kentucky. This is the local chapter of the Sweet Adelines International organization. Shortly after I joined they competed in the international competition where they finished 11th. I was unable to compete with them at that time for a couple of reasons. First of all, I was pretty new and rather overwhelmed to have to deal with the pressure and intensity of such a big competition, but secondly (and more importantly) Rachel had just joined our family a mere 2 and a half weeks previously, and wild horses couldn’t have pulled me away from her.
Fast forward to this past weekend. We had our regional competition for the chorus this past weekend in Covington Kentucky. It was a pretty big event because one of the big gun choruses was going to be competing against us for the first time in quite a few years. (Whoever wins sits out the following year, and between my chorus and the other one, we had been pretty much taking turns winning.) This other chorus, Gem City, is a top notch group having not lost in regional competition in nearly 40 years, and having won the international competition 5 times, the most recent time being about 10 years ago. We had never beaten them.
Another chorus, Capital City, is another strong chorus in our region. They had been losing to us, but always close, so we knew they were just as hungry to beat us as we were to beat Gem City. We approached this competition with a genuine sense of purpose.
Long story short (or is it too late for that now?), we won! (YEAH!!!) But it gets better than that. We are judged by a panel of four judges. One judge specializes in sound, another in music, another in expression, and the final one in showmanship. We sing two songs, a ballad (slow) and an up-tune (fast). Each judge can award 100 points per song, so there is a maximum of 800 points available. Prior to Saturday the best score our chorus had ever achieved was 656. This is not too bad, but we truly believed that we could do even better. Our goal was to break 680.
Our total score was 690. This is an “A.” As we reviewed the score sheets after the competition, the judges were so complementary. Editor’s note: Our score of 690 is the highest that has been given in any of the regional competitions thus far.
So next we will be competing in the international competition in the fall of 2009 in Nashville, TN. Stay tuned.
So let’s hear it for your Region 4 chorus champions, the Pride of Kentucky!
One of the things about Sweet Adelines is their penchant for sparkles, poofy hair, and caked-on make-up (let’s not forget the false eye lashes). Just to torment you a little, I will tell you that there are actual photos of me in said gaudy finery, but they will not be displayed on this forum. They were be available for viewing at an exorbitant fee. (Let’s face it, I don’t think you could afford it.)