Friday, June 25, 2010

A Barbershopper Who Gives Back

The performing chorus pictured at the top of this blog is the most public face of the MVE.  However, many of the members of the Midwest Vocal Express are involved in what can be considered the purest form of barbershopping – the quartet.  One of those members is John "Bo" Gibson, and he has been barbershopping for a lo-o-o-ng time.

Bo performs regularly with Easy Days at the Harmony Inn the Village in Greendale, WI.  A few weeks ago, he coached a quartet made up of members of the Milwaukee Symphony Chorus for their performance with the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra’s recent Americana concert.

Shown are photos of Bo (in the middle) with the quartet at the Monday night rehearsal, the quartet in their ready room and with Maestro Marvin Hamlisch.
Since the quartet appeared nameless, the Maestro made one up for the quartet during the first performance right in front of 2200 people - Below The Town.  It was the humorous opposite to the bluegrass group, Above The Town, that also performed on the program.  The Maestro’s interview schtick before and/or after they sang helped the foursome have even more fun in those brief minutes singing "This Land is Your Land" linked to "America the Beautiful."  Audiences, the Maestro, Lee Erickson (the MSO Chorus director) and management offstage were all beaming every time.

After the performances, the quartet sent out an email about Bo, saying, “His willingness to work with us, his generosity of time, and kindly manner were simply awesome--and it showed in the 3 performances.  Special thanks go to Bo!”

Bo – thanks for all you do for barbershop and the MVE!

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