BHA (Western Region) Masterclasses

The regional contest this year is being co-hosted by ANCA, to allow delegates of the ANCA ChoralFest the opportunity to see how we run a barbershop competition. On the Saturday afternoon before the competition we will be running a series of masterclasses where the competition judges will provide some high quality coaching, and we are looking for groups who would like to participate. These 90 minute masterclasses will be open for the ANCA delegates to observe, and will commence at noon and 3:45pm. Groups will be allotted a session within a masterclass where they will be able to perform a song and work with the judges. There will be a $60 fee for each group.


Barbershop Judging Categories

One of the features of the barbershop singing culture is the emphasis on quality and improvement. National competitions are generally held annually and performances are assessed by highly trained judges. They provide a numerical score but the more important part of their role is providing useful feedback on our performances during an individual 45 minute assessment. This feedback covers 3 separate categories, as follows (more details can be found here):
  • Singing Category (Bec Hewitt)
The Singing judge evaluates the degree to which the performer achieves artistic singing. This is accomplished through precise intonation, a high degree of vocal skill and appropriate vocal expression, and a high level of unity and consistency within the ensemble. Mastering these elements creates a fullness and expansion of sound, and when combined with expressive vocal skills will convey a feeling of genuine emotion to support the message of the song.
  • Music Category (Kieran O'Dea)
Music is defined as the song and arrangement, as performed. The Music category judges the performer’s musicianship in bringing the song and arrangement to life. The Music judge is responsible for adjudicating the musical elements in the performance, judging the extent to which the musical performance displays the hallmarks of the barbershop style and the degree to which the musical performance demonstrates an artistic sensitivity to the music’s primary theme(s).
  • Performance Category (Eddie Klimowicz)
One significant goal of any art form is communication. Performance refers to how the artist communicates a message and vision via the transformation of a song into an entertaining experience for an audience. The performance of a song is the artist’s gift to the audience, whose experiences, memories, and imagination transform that gift into an emotional experience. The performers’ goal is to create a high level of entertainment through the performance. The means to that end are as varied as the personality, abilities, and creative skills of the performers.

If you are interested in participating in the masterclasses, please complete the form below. If you have any questions, please contact us at