Ladies Barbershop Chorus Abbotskerswell Near Newton Abbot

Photo Above - Singing at Arthritus Association, St Paul's Church, Devon Square, Newton Abbot 2018 

Competing & LABBS

 We are founder members of the Ladies Association of British Barbershop (LABBS) and attend a convention each year which is usually held during the last week-end of October. This is a great occasion where all the chorus's in the country come together to compete and also to have fun and sing with each other.
 As a chorus we work towards competing and are always trying to improve our singing and our performance. Part of this improvement involves having 'Education Days' or week-ends when we are priviledged to have someone from a top chorus come down and coach us. 


So what is the difference between a choir and a chorus and how are we different to other choirs?

A choir (in this sense) is a group of singers, usually accompanied by an organ or piano and generally made up of the four traditional voices of soprano, alto, tenor and bass, although of course one can get just female choirs and just male choirs. In this type of choir the voice parts are usually balanced.

One definition of a chorus is a group of performers who sing and dance. Traditionally Barbershop choirs are called choruses, maybe because there is often movement /dance involved in the performances. A barbershop chorus is also made up of four voice-parts but these are arranged in a different way to a choir and the music is arranged differently with an emphasis on the harmonies. The vocal parts are tenor, lead, baritone and bass. The tenor sings in the range of a descant with the leads below taking the main tune. The baritones fill in the harmony, much as an alto would and the basses provide the foundations of the chords. Another big difference is that we sing A Capella, That is, without an instrument accompanying. Barbershop singing is all about telling the story and working the emotion.


We are constantly updating our repertoire and sing a broad selection of songs across the genres.
For example:-

Popular:- Adele, Michael Bouble, Billy Joel, Abba, Fleetwood Mac, Queen, Pharrell Williams

Songs from the Musicals

and of course


Could you next prescription from the GP read “go and sing with the Chordettes”?

According to Health Secretary Matt Hancock this could soon be the case as the government pushes towards “social prescribing” and away from a culture of “popping pills and Prozac”. In a recent speech at the Kings Fund, Mr Hancock stated “..what we should be doing is more prevention and perspiration. Social prescribing can help us combat over-medicalising people. It’s about moving from patient-centred care to person-centred care.” According to the Telegraph’s Laura Donnelly, the proposal, which arrives on the heels of a larger preventative health scheme, provides for the creation of a National Academy for Social Prescribing that will ensure GPs across the country are equipped to guide patients to an array of hobbies, sports and arts groups. So could GPs be offering us dance classes, trips to museums and singing lessons? Current members of the Chordettes will already tell you how great singing in a choir is – it reduces stress, gives you time out from your busy life, releases endorphins that make you feel amazing and provides instant access to a supportive and friendly social network. Come and see for yourself!

Chordettes sing live at the BBC

Chordettes Sing at The BBC Newton Abbot Chorus

2019 has started in fine song for Abbotskerswell based 4-part harmony choir, the Chordettes. Having received an invitation from Radio Devon’s Michael Chequer to appear live on his show on 2nd January 2019, a group of twelve choir members headed down to the BBC’s Plymouth studio to sing a few songs and talk about harmony singing. Led by their Musical Director, Sue Baxter, the Chordettes performed 3 songs and chatted with Michael Chequer for over an hour about the benefits of singing in a group, along with the fun and friendships that are made through being part of a choir. Sue explained to Michael that many women are told they can’t sing when they are at school, but often this is because they haven’t found the voice part that suits them. “The four-part harmonies that the Chordettes sing are arranged for female voices, meaning that there are very low bass parts and high female tenor parts as well as those for the mid-range. So, whatever you sing, there is a place for you with us” said Sue. Michael was interested to hear about the varied backgrounds and interests of choir members and was really impressed to see how friendly everyone is. He said, “From the moment you arrived here at the BBC reception area I could tell how friendly and happy you all are together”. Members explained to him that whilst they take the singing seriously, the friendships and having fun together are just as important aspects to being a part of the Chordettes.

To listen to the Chordettes singing live on the Michael Chequer show visit:

Chordettes Choir near Newton Abbot

The Chordettes is a ladies 4-part harmony a cappella chorus which meets every Wednesday in Abbotskerswell Village Hall. The chorus originates from Teignmouth where it was formed over 40 years ago and is a founder member of the Ladies Association of British Barbershop Singers. With over 40 members the chorus performs at various events and concerts throughout South Devon and competes at national level each year.

The Chordettes Sing for Arthritis Association

On an incredibly wet evening in March over 40 ladies of all ages from this friendly chorus attended St Pauls Church Hall Newton Abbot. The Chordettes were delighted to perform for the Arthritis Association. The appreciative audience enjoyed popular songs by modern artists including Adele and Pharrell Williams, as well as firm favourites from across the decades and much loved hits from the musicals. Between each section of songs from the repertoire, new Musical Director Sue Baxter explained to the audience the importance of each of the four part harmony sections of the chorus in contributing to the overall sound, even though sometimes each part is singing a separate tune. Sue Baxter said “The chorus sang wonderfully well. It was especially lovely to have our 3 new basses and 2 new baritones singing with us. I am extremely impressed with how quickly they are learning the songs”.

The chorus is available for bookings at private and charity events. They are currently running free “Welcome Wednesday” taster sessions on the first Wednesday of each month if you would like to find out more and try singing with the Chordettes. The chorus meet from 7pm to 10pm in Abbotskerswell Village Hall. You don’t need to be able to read music – new members are fully supported and provided with teacher tracks as well as sheet music. For more details email Chorus members benefit from learning singing techniques, breathing skills, how to sing in harmony, understanding vocal range, vocal warm ups, listening skills, building confidence, making new friends and most importantly having fun!
Lynda Williams, PRO
The Chordettes

Happy New Year 2017 from The Chordettes, Ladies Close Harmony Chorus

The Chordettes would like to wish all residents and friends of Abbotskerswell a very Happy and Joyful New Year. It was a busy end to 2017 for the chorus, as we raised funds for several charities including £212.00 for Macmillan from the sale of cakes at a social evening, ending a successful 3-week ‘Learn to Sing’ course to recruit new members. As well as being able to donate funds raised to Macmillan, the chorus were joined by some lovely ladies and judging by the harmonious sound when mixed with the chorus on several rehearsal nights in the village hall, good singers too. It is wonderful that some have decided to join and new
members will continue to be welcome in 2018. The Chordettes continually seek to recruit new members, whether experienced singers (sight reading an advantage, but not essential) or beginners who would like to join them to sing in harmony, for fun and friendship in the Village Hall on Wednesday nights. In particular the chorus is currently seeking some more sopranos and ran a successful series of ‘Welcome Wednesdays – How High Can You Go’ in January. However, it is never too late to try a new challenge for 2018 so why not come and join us for a fun evening with our friendly chorus and kick-start your new year with a new challenge, a new hobby and new friends.
The chorus rehearse on Wednesday nights between 7pm and 10pm in Abbotskerswell Village Hall. To enquire about joining please email . Being a member of The Chordettes, you can benefit from developing singing technique and breathing skills, learning how to sing in harmony, understanding your vocal range with vocal warm ups, building listening skills and confidence, making new friends and most importantly having fun! There are some great new songs being added to the repertoire this year so it really has never been a better time to join. Plans are in hand to sing at various events throughout this year, raise money for charity, attend the Ladies Association of British Barbershop Singers National Competition in Harrogate in 2018 and to host some of our own events. More news on all of this in the coming months.
Lynda Williams, PRO
The Chordettes

Chernobyl Children's Charity Concert 


We are available to sing for Concerts, Festivals, and other occasions.

If you would like to make an enquiry you can do so via email or our facebook page.

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