choral music when Tim and Claire were in high school, singing for the legendary former Ypsilanti High School choir director Bill Boggs. Now Paul and I take advantage of our acquaintance with two former Ypsilanti High School Chamber Singers, twin brothers and members of the U-M Men's Glee Club, to procure the best possible seats in Hill Auditorium for the club's annual November and April concerts.
Last November we took our center seats close to the stage just before almost 100 scrubbed and shining tuxedoed young men filed in. As they hit the first notes of their signature opening song, "Laudes atque Carmina," all those perfectly in-tune blended male voices washed over me, raising goose bumps and bringing thoughts of my late dad. The Men's Glee Club is superb one of the best male choruses in the world. During our Bill Boggs years, Paul and I learned a lot about what distinguishes a great choir from an average one. It must have a collective sound, never revealing individual voices (except for soloists, of course). And the lyrics must be clearly etched on top of that sound. Listening to a fine choir is like listening to a good orchestra. Just as I love the swell of the violins in a symphony, I love the surge of the bass and baritone voices filling in after the tenors.
Men's Glee Club concerts begin with classical music. The mood lightens up as the evening progresses. I relish the entire repertoire but especially look forward to spirituals, Irish music, and the wonderful Michigan songs that end every concert. The zany popular octet the Friars, who perform after intermission, are always a big hit.