How many singers are in your quartet? It may sound like a stupid question – which is perfect for today, National “Ask A Stupid Question” Day! We get this question pretty frequently – sometimes in jest and sometimes in all sincerity. Well, (most) everyone knows that the answer should be “four”. However, recently, Lustre had an experience which puts that answer into question!
We had the privilege of being invited to perform on a benefit concert for the quartets from Region 19 that are competing in Nashville next month. Our tenor could not be with us that day so we were just a trio. But then a good friend of ours, Sue Taylor, also found herself without the rest of her quartet. Sue is the tenor of A.K.A. – Region 15 2009 Champions. So we worked up a few songs that we could sing together for the benefit.
On the day of the event, there were two shows. When it was our stage time for the first show, three-fourths of Lustre (Lori, Lori and Jenny) came out on stage and stumbled through many unfortunate mishaps. One of us tripped over another, the pitch pipe was dropped, someone had toilet paper hanging out of the back their pants, we realized we were missing our fourth person, we forgot the words to the song, and the list goes on. Fear not, however, our “schtick” was all preplanned. As we explained to the audience, we had decided to get out of the way all the fears and worries that contestants have before going on stage… to get all that “bad mojo” out of the way for the Region 19 quartets going to Nashville. After we had our “grand entrance” mishaps, we sang a trio piece. Next, we brought out Sue to sing a couple of quartet pieces. It went off really well and we were pumped for the second show of the day.
Between shows were discussing if we should switch a song for the 2nd show and that is when we found that our baritone had all but lost her voice. Well, that just set us up for the next show even more. Second show – trio comes out – all the mishaps – we make the announcement about getting the bad mojo out of the way – brought out Sue and then announced that our baritone had one more problem that some contestants fear – the loss of her voice. So we asked for a volunteer from the audience to sing the baritone part. Since there were no volunteers we decided to let Lori pick her own replacement. We pulled Rick Taylor (director of Chorus of the Chesapeake (BHS) and Upper Chesapeake Chorus (SAI), famed quartet singer, husband to Sue, and our gracious plant) to join us. Instead of replacing Lori – Rick found himself standing behind her and singing thru her. Lori lip-synched most of the song. For the end, Lori stepped to the side and Rick joined the foursome to make us five. So, to answer the question, “How many are in your quartet?” – well I guess it just depends on the circumstances!