Doing what she loves

All singers are urged to join in on the fun

When someone is doing what she really loves, the work of doing it becomes play and the desire to do it becomes her passion. So it is with the Crossroads Harmony Chorus in Reed City. Their love for singing is unmistakable. It’s no wonder then that the 15 members of this local chorus of Sweet Adelines want to take their singing to the highest possible level. And they want to meet other women who might want to add their own voices to the music. On Tuesday evening, Jan. 22 at 6:30 p.m. the Crossroads Harmony Chorus is holding an open house for ladies who would like to get back to singing or improve their voices. The event takes place at St. Paul Lutheran church on 4 Mile Rd, just west of 220th Ave. in Reed City. No one is required to read music or have any vocal training. Many of the current members never sang in front of people before joining Sweet Adelines. And nearly half of them can’t read music. The group was organized about 10 years ago shortly after the closing of the Timbertones chapter of Sweet Adelines in Cadillac. Several members from the Reed City area wanted to keep the music going and Crossroads Harmony Chorus was born. These singers are unusual because they do not sing with any instrumental accompaniment. Their style of singing is called “a cappella” and is based on the Barbershop Harmony tradition. The chorus is divided into 4 sections: Bass, Baritone, Tenor and Lead. Each section learns a separate singing part and then puts them all together to create harmony with each other. The result is “ringing” chords and a thrilling sound. Many listeners are surprised when they first hear Barbershop harmony sung by ladies voices. Recently the chorus walked along Upton Ave. in Reed City, going into local businesses and singing for shoppers and employees. “It was interesting how people stopped what they were doing and became fascinated by the sound. They were astonished to realize how these gals can make powerful music anywhere without a piano or other instrument to play along.” The journey these women are on will take them to compete with hundreds of other Barbershop singers throughout Michigan and Ontario this coming April. In this annual event, 18-20 choruses present 2 songs on a stage before a panel of judges where they will be scored in the areas of Music, Singing and Showmanship. Crossroads Harmony is one of the smallest choruses in their Region yet always puts on a great show. According to Whitten, it is a challenge to compete with other groups with 30 or more singers. “It would be a big plus for us if we could find a few additional ladies to join us on the competition stage.”