The Victoria Village Squires will send a pair of love songs, a rose and a card to a loved one in a singing Valentine Feb. 14 for $50. (Christine van Reeuwyk/Oak Bay News)

Barbershop singers bring harmony to Valentine’s

Victoria’s Village Squires add song to the day of love

Rich tones of barbershop harmony echo through the halls at Silver Threads centre at Bay Street and Richmond Avenue.

It’s a warm and welcoming sound after the dark and rain of winter outdoors. Then the Victoria Village Squires, burst into a welcome song, one rehearsed in this space routinely. But tonight, they prepare to spread love through Greater Victoria.

“Barbershop songs are all about love. We sing so many love songs it almost gets tiresome, but on the day of love we get to go out to our community and sing to people, give them a rose from someone they love, and a card,” says chorus director Peter McBride, a 25-year veteran of the hobby.

For $50, the Village Squires will serenade your loved one with two songs and present a rose and a card this Valentine’s Day. It’s something they’ve done the entire 50 years of the chorus, and groups in Nanaimo will perform similar services, says McBride.

“Our culture doesn’t sing to each other the way it did 50 or 60 year ago, modern technology has replaced that activity,” he said. “There’s something very primal, very social about being sung to and about singing to someone else. It’s part of the hobby.”

Made up of men from all over the south Island, the Village Squires perform regularly in the community, offer school and public learning programs, and entertain the public with their great mix of old classics and modern arrangements. The a cappella chorus is part of the Barbershop Harmony Society, an international singing movement of about 30,000 men.

McBride came to Victoria a year ago, performing before that on the Lower Mainland and in Washington. He discovered the craft when his wife said he needed a hobby, going so far as to seek out a barbershop quartet meeting to take him to.

“I swallowed the bait on the first night and I don’t think I’ve missed a meeting in 25 years,” McBride said. “It’s a far flung hobby and there are men who do this in every city around.”

Those looking to serenade a love with Let me Call you Sweetheart and Heart of my Heart I Love You can visit villagesquires.com or call 250-590-5997 for booking details.


 

cvanreeuwyk@oakbaynews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

 

Mark Harris, chorus manager for the Victoria Village Squires, presents a rose, a final romantic element to the singers’ offering for Valentine’s Day. The Squires will send a pair of love songs, a rose and a card to a loved one in a singing Valentine. (Christine van Reeuwyk/Oak Bay News)

Just Posted

B.C. freestyle skier wins gold

Cassie Sharpe of Comox shines in the halfpipe

On the agenda for Committee of the Whole tonight

Reserves and Surplus Policy and three land use applications

UPDATED: Emergency crews rescue pregnant woman from Mount Finlayson

Langford and Metchosin respond to roughly four-hour-long rescue

Oak Bay skaters bound for BC Games in Kamloops

Saanich resident aims for second gold

Victoria police pay special attention to domestic violence

Workshop for officers and others shows how domestic abuse trauma impacts for a long time

Oak Bay skaters bound for BC Games in Kamloops

Saanich resident aims for second gold

How to keep local news visible in your Facebook feed

Facebook has changed the news feed to emphasize personal connections. You might see less news.

Virtue and Moir end ice dance careers with Olympic gold

Virtue and Moir’s gold medal win at the Olympics makes them the world’s most decorated figure skaters

Canadians find living in small spaces teaches creativity

Canadian families choosing to live in small spaces to bring closeness to children

Victoria City rower medals at indoor world championships

Carl Schoch takes 2,000-metre sprint bronze in veteran category

Saanich Braves earn top awards heading into playoffs

MVP, Coach of Year lead Braves against Kerry Park Islanders starting Tuesday

SAR suspends search for missing man at Sun Peaks

RCMP will continue to search for a missing man near Kamloops but SAR has suspended their role

Lottery will help save children’s lives

Each ticket gets you a chance to win a lot of money, while helping a lot of kids

B.C. RCMP officer officially cleared in car wash shooting incident

A report found the Salmon Arm officer fired 14 bullets at the man’s truck

Most Read