Voices of the South members traveled to Atlanta Friday, October 7, to perform at the 68th Annual Dixie District Fall 2016 Barbershop Convention and Contest.
The two-day event at the Crowne Plaza Ravinia in Dunwoody featured a Quartet Semi-Final Friday night, and the Chorus Contest, and the Quartet Finals on Saturday.
Director Matt Powell, who has been preparing the chorus for this contest for almost four months, said, “I thought the chorus was well prepared. We practiced week after week while continuing to do other charts. With this being my first time as the Voices director at a competition, I was excited with how we performed.
“Even though it was not the best score the chorus ever achieved, I thought it was a good baseline for us to grow on,” Powell said.
Thirteen choruses from across the district performed — Athens, Ala.; Birmingham; Tuscaloosa, Ala.; Atlanta Metro; Greater Atlanta; Lake Lanier, Ga.; Marietta, Ga.; Roswell, Ga.; Chattanooga, Tenn.; Cleveland, Tenn.; Germantown, Tenn.; Greater Knoxville, Tenn.; and Memphis, Tenn.
Voices of the South put 23 men on the stage. The chorus received a third place in its plateau. The group sang two pieces, “It Rained Last Night” and “Skylark.”
Silver Lining, the registered quartet of Voices of the South, performed on Friday night in the preliminaries where they made the top 10 quartets from a field of 24.
Daniel Hipps, lead; Ed Wharton, bass; Matt Powell, baritone; and Alex Garrison, tenor, make up Silver Lining. They sang “Recipe for Love” and “When I Fall in Love” in the semi-finals.
Wharton was impressed with the group’s performance. “We felt good both nights about what we did compared to what we felt like we could do. You always want to leave everything you have ‘on the stage’ and with the audience. We felt like we did just that.”
The group then performed a second time Saturday night. They sang “From the First Hello to the Last Goodbye” and “Bare Necessities.”
“We were very pleased with our scores and our placement,” Wharton said. “We picked up good and to-the-point coaching in areas we can improve our performance. In the end you just cannot ask for more than that.”