North Texas Daily

World-renowned Vocal Majority Chorus performs at UNT

World-renowned Vocal Majority Chorus performs at UNT

World-renowned Vocal Majority Chorus performs at UNT
February 05
12:17 2014

Ali West // Intern writer

Truck, bus and train drivers, airplane pilots, ordained ministers, UNT students – past and present – and even a Federal Prison guard sang for a UNT audience last night.

The internationally recognized Vocal Majority Chorus, a DFW-based choir of more than 100 men of all ages and occupations, performed last night in the Murchison Center. As part of the newly named Mary Jo and V. Lane Rawlins Fine Arts Series, president emeritus Rawlins and his wife attended the event.

The all-male chorus performed a variety of Broadway, inspirational, classic and patriotic songs, singing alone as well as with musical accompaniment. Members also danced for a visual effect. Music performance freshman Logan Igarta said he enjoyed the choir’s performance of “Joshua Fit De Battle of Jericho” because of the staging.

“It was a lot more interesting to watch,” Igarta said. “It adds a layer of depth to the singing.”

The highlight of the night, however, was a performance by barbershop quartet Bonus Tract.

Singing “18 Wheels on a Big Rig,” the group drew laughs by asking the audience to sing along, pitting the left side of the room against the right. Vocal Majority president Brian Armstrong said some barbershop quartets do not involve the audience the way Bonus Track did.

“My experience is the more experienced barbershop quartets will try and engage the audience,” Armstrong said. “It kind of helps them because they don’t get so worn out.”

The conductor of the program sang along with the choir as he directed the music, an aspect which music education freshman Ryan Tai said he appreciated.

“I think it’s cool that he’s taking a part in his own program,” Tai said.

At the end of the night, the chorus earned a standing ovation. Armstrong said the show was phenomenal for him because the audience was fantastic.

“We could not have asked for a better audience than the one we found here at UNT,” Armstrong said. “I’m being serious, because we’ve sung for some audiences that were not as attentive.”

Armstrong said the quality of the choir’s performance was partly because of the venue.

“It’s a wonderful place to sing, so we were able to perform really well,” Armstrong said. “The audience responded to that.”

Chorus member Duncan Gilman, who works in marketing, said the music is his favorite part of being with the Vocal Majority.

“The camaraderie is great,” Gilman said. “But everybody’s really here for that great barbershop harmony.”

Feature photo: Musical Director Greg Clancy, front, and the Vocal Majority Chorus ring out the last note of ‘I’m On My Way’ by Frederick Loewe during last night’s concert at the Murchison Performing Arts Center. Clancy and his father, Jim, are both directors of the choir. Photo by Edward Balusek / Staff Photographer 

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