Oregon Public Broadcasting

If you happen to be out someplace like Portland's Director Park, don't be alarmed. The men with the handlebar mustaches are professionals.

Today marks the closing of the Barbershop Harmony Society's International convention. April Baer reports hundreds of singers have invaded Portland for the event.

Quartets and choruses travelled from as far as Tokyo and Australia - and some closer spots.

"I'm Ed Novak," said one of the taller men in the crowd. "I live in Clarkston Washington, and I have a place in Oregon, over in Wallowa County. I started with lead and now I'm getting older, my voice is changing to bass. I went up to tenor, because I have a falsetto voice."

Novak says the quartets are doing aggressive outreach to show people you don't have to read music or know theory to enjoy the form.

"If you can sing in the shower, in tune, then you qualify."

None of the Oregon quartets progressed to the top rounds of competition. But Salem's Senate-Aires men's chorus placed fifth overall.

This story originally appeared on Oregon Public Broadcasting.

Recommended for you

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.