The UW Mens Glee Club will be performing in two community concerts soon. On Friday, March 4, theyll be appearing with the a capella group The Coats at Eckstein Middle School, and on Saturday, March 5, they will participate in the A Capella Festival at Third Place Books in Lake Forest Park.
The Eckstein program includes tunes from the Black Eyed Peas, the Beatles, Van Morrison and many others as well as more traditional glee club and barbershop fare. The concert will also feature performances by high school men’s groups from Kamiak and Auburn Riverside.
The Mens Glee Club was founded — or rather resurrected from an earlier, defunct group — by UW Music Professor Steve Demorest in 2007. Starting with 22 members, Demorest has now built the group to 40 and taken it to nontraditional venues, including Mariner’s baseball and Husky football games.
Back in 2007, Demorest had this to say about the glee club. “As a choral music educator, Ive been observing the declining participation of men in singing. Even as young as third grade, boys are saying that singing is not what boys do. My problem with that is not that its harmful to a choral program. My problem with that is that I think its harmful to boys. I dont think theres any way to replicate the experience one gets from singing, either alone or in an ensemble. I dont want to see boys selecting out of that opportunity because they have this perception that its not for them.”
He said then that one of his long-term goals for the ensemble was to get it out into the community so that young boys could see men singing. Theyll be doing just that for the March concerts.
The Eckstein concert is at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are available from Brown Paper Tickets for $12, $7 for students. Prices at the door are $15 and $10.
The A Capella Festival runs from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and is free.