What is Barbershop? Above all fun!

Singing is a joy, and especially in community, e.g. in quartets or choruses, it is especially beautiful. Barbershop is a particularly addictive genre of acappella music, and is practiced in male, female and mixed ensembles!

Barbershop in brief

Barbershop or Barbershop Harmony is an English speaking, originally US-American acappella music style, which is sung in four voices by male / female / mixed quartets and choruses. This genre of acappella music originated in the American hairdressing salons ("barber shops"), which at the end of the 19th century were places of convivial meetings, where the gentlemen occasionally managed to pass the waiting time with spontaneously improvised songs. In the meantime, barbershop music in the USA has long since become a part of American culture.

Barbershop singing is overtone music in pure culture and is created by tuning the vowels, pitch and volume of the four voices as precisely as possible. Particularly characteristic is the close harmony, which enables a homogeneous sound and a multiple overlapping of the overtones of the four voices. If you sing it cleanly intoned, you get a particularly rich sound, which Barbershopper especially love and which you simply have to experience yourself.

Almost every song in the Barbershop style is a transferred piece from the pop music of the last 120 years. That means it can be a jazz ballad from the 1920s/30s as well as a Beatles classic or a piece by Queen - or even current songs such as "When I Was Your Man" by Bruno Mars.

Another special feature is probably the way of performance, because Barbershoppers only sing from memory and perform on stage. Beside great singing the audience is also fascinated with facial expressions, gestures and whole choreographies. There is bouncing, smiling and sometimes dancing across the stage!

Got curious?

Then take a look at the following examples: