January 19, 2018

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About the Kansas City Chorus

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We are a vibrant group of over 100 women who gather each Tuesday evening to sing and learn the musical art form of barbershop harmony.  Made up of women of all ages and backgrounds, during the day we are mothers, nurses, business professionals, teachers, bus drivers, eTheresepictc.  But on Tuesday evenings we’re just “us” having a great time perfecting our craft by preparing for entertaining performances, shows, and competitions sponsored by the international organization.

Since our first meeting in 1945, the Kansas City Chorus has had a long tradition of striving for excellence in the craft of barbershop-style singing.  We are the oldest chapter in the International organization and were Champions of the first Regional Competition in 1952, held in Topeka, Kansas.  For many years after that, winning a first place medal eluded the chorus.  


Jo Kraut

In 1980, when Jo Kraut became Chorus Director, the chorus grew both musically and numerically, achieving regional championships and beginning in 1990, to finalists eight times at the Sweet Adelines International Chorus Competition.  Jo retired as Director in 2008, and continued to inspire others with her love of barbershop by coaching and sharing her expertise with both women's and men's barbershop choruses and quartets, until her passing in January 2013.  Her dedication to the craft of Barbershop Harmony is reflected in the many achievements of the Kansas City Chorus at the regional and international competitive level.   


After the retirement of Jo Kraut in 2008, Stacy Schumacher co-directed the chorus with Kim Kraut (2008-2009).  Then after an extensive search process, Stacy  was chosen as the new Artistic Director of the Kansas City Chorus in late 2009.  Taking the reins solo, she led us in eight Holiday shows, four International Competitions, three first-place Regional Competitions, several Chorus shows, Retreats and a performance or two (or three!) around town.  Stacy's energy and musical talent were instrumental in rebuilding the Kansas City Chorus.  Under her leadership, the chorus underwent many changes, growing and flourishing, and we loved being a part of her musical journey as well. The Kansas City Chorus turned another page in its history on January 1st, 2016, when Stacy  officially stepped down from her position as our Artistic Director.  Stacy took a break to devote more attention to herself and the important people in her very busy life, taking our best wishes and hopes for the future.


We were so fortunateSusan Ives that the talented and multi-crowned Director of the Topeka Acappella Unlimited Chorus, Susan Ives, agreed to work with us as Interim Artistic Director through the first quarter of 2016 and took us to a winning score at the Region 5 Competition.  Working with our Assistant Director, Lori Carrender, Susan directed her chorus in Topeka on Monday nights, and the Kansas City Chorus on Tuesday nights. She graciously continued to direct us into the summer of 2016, as we went forward in our search for a new Artistic Director. We were so fortunate to be able to take advantage of Susan's skills and expertise as well as her positivity and encouragement during that short period of time.  







Michelle H_4Our Brand New Artistic Director, Michelle Hunget has been singing Barbershop Harmony since she was a fourteen year old teenager in Clay Center Community High School where her high school choral director, Ken Lang, the Manhattan, Kansas Men's Barbershop Chorus Director put together her first quartet called a Pinch of Spice.  She has been a member of the Kansas City Chorus for over thirty years, was the Tenor in the International Championship Quartet Zing!, in 2010, and is the Tenor in the current International Finalist Quartet, Heat, which will be competing in Las Vegas Nevada, this October.  Michelle brings her expertise in Barbershop harmony and enthusiasm for future accomplishments to the Kansas City Chorus - a perfect fit!  She has previously served the chorus in a variety of Leadership Team and Music Team  positions, including Tenor Section Leader, Choreography, and most recently Interim Assistant Director.  Our future outlook on growth and excellence for the Kansas City Chorus looks bright indeed with Michelle guiding the way!


  CompetitionThe Kansas City Chorus is part of Region 5 Sweet Adelines.  Region 5 encompasses most of Missouri, northwest Kansas, eastern Nebraska, most of Illinois, all of Iowa, and the extreme northwest corner of Kentucky. In the spring of the year, the Kansas City Chorus participates in the Region 5 Chorus Competition that is held to determine who will compete at the International Competition eighteen months later. Competitions are a special time for quartets and choruses from our region to come together to sing for each other, and get some constructive feedback from an international certified judges panel.  From 1989 to the present, the Kansas City Chorus has earned a first place Regional Medal fourteen times. In early April of 2016, we became the regional Championship Chorus at the Region 5 Competition in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.   We are currently preparing for our next International Competition during the fall of 2017 in Las Vegas, Nevada.


The winners of each regional competition in both quartet and chorus categories travel to International Competition, which is held each fall in a selected city.  Beginning in 1990, the Kansas City Chorus consistently placed in the top ten international choruses.  In the fall of 2011, the Kansas City Chorus was again a competitor in the semi-finals of the International Convention held in Houston, Texas, representing Region 7. Click here to learn more.  In the fall of 2013, due to the regional realignment directed by the international organization, the Kansas City Chorus was one of two choruses to represent Region 5 at the International Competition / Convention in Honolulu, Hawaii, placing 12th from among all international competitors.  In the fall of 2015, we represented Region 5 during the International Competition in Las Vegas, Nevada, placing 15th among the international competitors.



Many choruses have a number of members who form their own vocal quartets in addition to singing with the chorus. The Kansas City Chorus currently is home to a number of wonderful quartets, and we are very proud of them! Click here to see our quartet section to learn more about them.



The Kansas City Chorus is a chapter of Sweet Adelines, International, a 501(c)3 non-profit educational organization of approximately 30,000 members in choruses and quartets, worldwide. International Headquarters is located in Tulsa, Oklahoma, USA.







 Maintained by: D Duncan                                                               Latest Update:  10/10/2016