Get ready for Razzmatazz at Nottingham’s Royal Concert Hall


In May, Nottingham will be filled with the sound of thousands of female voices singing in harmony as the Sweet Adelines International Barbershop Contest comes to the city’s Royal Concert Hall. Lynn Bleakley, who sings with Nottingham’s Lace City Chorus, is one of those taking part and in this article she writes about the event. 

If you are in Nottingham between Friday 9th May and Sunday 11th May, you will almost certainly see, and probably hear, some of the 1,500 women from all over the UK and Netherlands who will be in the city for the vibrant and exciting Sweet Adelines International Barbershop Contest at the Royal Concert Hall.

The event is coming to Nottingham for the first time and as part of the preparations 21 choruses and 19 quartets have been practising and polishing their performances for many months to impress the international panel of judges. The winning quartet will represent the UK/Netherlands at the World Championships in Baltimore, USA this year, while the winning chorus will get to go to the 2015 World Championships in Las Vegas.

Chorus girls.

Chorus girls.

Sweet Adelines International’s motto is ‘Harmonise the World’ and has a membership of more than 24,000 women in 35 regions, mostly in USA and Canada but also in Europe, Australia and New Zealand. Any of the singers will tell you that barbershop is about giving great entertainment – pizzazz and sparkle – plus performances of high musical skill. Sung a cappella style in four part harmony, it includes ballads, classic songs, popular show tunes and mainstream music.

The Lace City Chorus, which has 80 members, has won the Region 31 contest four times and represented the UK/Netherlands at the World Championships each time. This year they will be trying to make it a fifth win. Two members of last year’s winning quartet, Fortuity, are also from Nottingham and recently represented the region in Hawaii.

Visit or call the Concert Hall Box Office on (0115) 989 5555 for more information and to purchase tickets for the quartet competition (Friday 9th May, 3.30pm), the chorus competition (Saturday 10th May, 11am) and The Show of Champions (Saturday 10 May, 8.15pm). 

Posted on 27 March 2014
Featured author: Catherine Allen Marketing Assistant

Arts fan, runner and cyclist who has been living in Nottingham for more than a decade. Loves real ale, craft beer, good food, travelling and sausage dogs.

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