Spangles Ladies’ Harmony Chorus left the sunny shores of Los Alcázares to represent SABS (the Spanish Association of Barbershop Singers) at the LABBS (Ladies’ Association of British Barbershop Singers) Convention, attended by over 2,000 delegates, in Harrogate, Yorkshire. “It’s a great honour to be invited to open the LABBS chorus contest” remarked Co-Chorus Manager, Lyn Baines. “As a non-member of LABBS, we were unable to compete, but we were privileged to warm up the microphones for the LABBS competitors.”
Some thirty six Spangles ladies made the trip to Harrogate where they enjoyed the experience of performing their contest package on the Harrogate International Centre stage, cheered on by several supporters from Spain and the UK. Although they could not be part of the overall contest, the judges still provided them with an unpublished score for their performance. “We’re extremely happy with our score and the very positive feedback from the judges” commented Chorus Director, Gail Grainger. “It demonstrates that we can certainly hold our own in the British arena and we’re extremely grateful to LABBS for giving us this rare opportunity.”
Their trip wasn’t all work and barbershop; it was also Gail’s 60th birthday, so the chorus celebrated with her at a local Indian restaurant; needless to say, the diners were entertained in true barbershop style while they waited for their food. Some of the chorus managed to have tea at the famous Betty’s Tea Rooms or enjoyed a meal at Jamie Oliver’s restaurant, and even the Yorkshire weather was kind with balmy temperatures of 19o Centigrade.
Spangles has won the SABS gold medal twice, once in 2011 in San Pedro del Pinatar and again in 2013 in Benalmádena. SABS rules dictate that a gold medallist cannot compete in the following year, so Spangles is now gearing up to go for their third gold in Benalmádena in April 2015. “All this costs money” said Co-Chorus Manager, Anthea Prentice, “but we have an excellent fundraising team who have put on events to raise money to help us with travel and accommodation costs for Harrogate, and now we are fundraising for our new stage costume and the cost of competing in Benalmádena. We’re extremely grateful to all our friends, family and followers for supporting us at the fundraising events.”
Here are some memories from our journey. Thanks to Donna Walsh for the photos: