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BABS first 25 years 1974 to 1999

Welcome to the world of Barbershop singing.

This website is the central website for The British Association of Barbershop Singers (BABS) and here you will find everything you need to know about Barbershop harmony singing in the UK.

If you need to find a barbershop chorus or barbershop quartet to sing for your event, or want to find a chorus near to you that you can join to sing, or you need to know what barbershop events are occurring in the barbershop singing world, or you need to track down some music, then you will find it all here on this website

BABS holds its national convention in May every year when all the choruses and quartets from all over the UK meet to celebrate this wonderful hobby. There are two major competitions - one for the choruses and one for quartets.

Barbershop harmony is a style of unaccompanied vocal music characterised by consonant four-part chords for every melody note in a predominantly homophonic texture.

The melody is consistently sung by the lead, with the tenor harmonising above the melody, the bass singing the lowest harmonising notes, and the baritone completing the chord.

Barbershop singers adjust pitches to achieve perfectly tuned chords in just intonation while remaining true to the established tonal centre.

Artistic singing in the Barbershop style exhibits a fullness or expansion of sound, precise intonation, a high degree of vocal skill and a high level of unity and consistency within the ensemble. Ideally, these elements are natural, unmanufactured and free from apparent effort.

Barbershop music presentation uses appropriate musical and visual methods to convey the theme of the song and provide the audience with an emotionally satisfying and entertaining experience. The musical and visual delivery is from the heart, believable, and sensitive to the song and its arrangement throughout. The most stylistic presentation artistically melds together the musical and visual aspects to create and sustain the illusions suggested by the music.

To become a member of BABS, it is best to join a Registered Club - the annual subscription will be £48 as of 1st January 2018. When you sing with a registered club, you will automatically become a full member. For your local chorus click here

Individual full membership of BABS through the Don Amos Club is also available to all men in the UK, and those based overseas, who are not members of a registered club - annual subscription £48 as of 1st January 2018.

The Membership Rules for BABS can be found here.

If you would like to become an individual full or associate member please contact the BABS Membership Secretary at this email address:


For other ways to join the Association click here.

Cotton Town Chorus Locksmiths


18th May 2019

The new official BABS app, singbarbershop, is now available! Find it on the Apple App Store and Google Play by searching for singbarbershop.
Click here for scanable QR

26th April 2019

The prospectus and enrolment website for this year's Harmony College are now available.
To read the prospectus click here
To view the website and make your booking click here

13th April 2019
Auditions now open for the 41st Harmony College Audition Chorus Stream

We're delighted to announce that the auditions for the Audition Chorus Stream at this year's Harmony College are now open!
Click here for more information.
General enrolment for Harmony College will be opening in the coming days. Keep your eyes peeled for an announcement about that! We wish those auditioning the very best of luck!

1Oth April 2019

Are you interested in becoming a member of the BABS board?
See the latest vacancies here.
Vice Chairman
Special Events Director
Membership Services Director

4th April 2019

Harmony College Scholarships are still available! Apply before the 31st May. Click here for more information

2nd April 2019
SAVE THE DATE: Quartet Prelims

Quartet Prelims will take place on the 9th & 10th November 2019 at The Octagon in Sheffield.
Keep an eye out for further news…

2nd April 2019
BinH Mixed Quartet Competition

Entries are now full for the BinH Mixed Quartet Competition taking place in October. Quartets can still register for the waiting list click here

11th February 2019
BABS is recruiting a new Vice Chairman

Could this be you or a barbershop colleague? It's a strategically important role, as if you are appointed you will be expected to step up into the Chairman's job, when Martin Baglow ends his term in December 2020. It's a job right at the heart of BABS, leading the future direction of this vibrant organisation for the benefit of its members. Committee experience in your club is helpful, as is experience gained elsewhere in being part of a successful management team. If you'd like to know more, see our ad here, speak to any director or call Pat Perridge, Administration Director 07785 331 375

11th November 2018

The Draw for the SING2019 Chorus Competition has been carried out and you can see the order of perfomance here

1st November 2018
SING 2019
Convention Registration & Show Tickets Box Office Now Open

The Box Office is now open to Register for 2019 Convention and purchase Show Tickets.
Click here to go to the SING2019 website

27th September 2018
Mixed Chorus Applications

Applications are now invited to enter the 2019 Mixed Chorus Competition on Sunday 26th May 2019 in Bournemouth. Closing date for entries is 28th February 2019
Click here for details

24th July 2018
2019 Chorus Competition Applications

Applications are now invited to enter the 2019 Chorus Competition on the 25th May 2019 in Bournemouth. Closing date for entries is 28th October 2018.
Click here for application Form

31st May 2018
2018 On Demand Service Now Available

The BABS free to view on demand service is now available. All the contestants from the BABS Chorus, Quartet and Mixed Chorus contests can now be viewed on line.
Click here for details