Sunnyvale, CA…60 years of making music. That’s the ongoing legacy of The Peninsulaires, the Palo Alto Mountain View Chapter of the Barbershop Harmony Society. This 40-man chorus is one of the best kept musical secrets on the Peninsula. They rehearse every Tuesday evening from 7:30 to 10:30 PM at a venue that is open to the public. In the past month, visitors from as far away as Minnesota, Norway and Israel have stopped in to enjoy this unique style of a cappella music. You can visit them free of charge at the Multi Purpose Room of the First United Methodist Church at 535 Old San Francisco Road in Sunnyvale.
“When most people think of barbershop singing, they think of a quartet,” said Steve Sammonds, Chorus Director. “When we show up they are surprised to find forty guys instead of four. But the music is the same. We sing four part harmony arranged for men’s voices. These arrangements generate a sound quality that’s different from other styles of vocal music.”
Sammonds explained that every man in the group is an amateur singer. “Most of the guys didn’t read music when they joined,” said Sammonds. “But our Society, in general, and this Chapter in particular, are very good at teaching things like music fundamentals and how to sing properly. A lot of untrained singers will be horse after they’ve sung for only an hour. Not our guys. We teach them how to use that wonderful instrument called the human voice without strain. That’s one of the reasons we all have so much fun.”
The Peninsulaires invite you to join them any Tuesday evening at their rehearsal venue. You can also hire the full chorus or just a quartet for parties, fund raisers, corporate events or community activities. For more information and to view their public performance schedule, visit their web site at www.thepeninsulaires.org or email firstname.lastname@example.org.