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Harmony packs house

Barbershop chorus performs at HCC

Barbershop chorus performs at HCC

November 16, 2008|By DAN DEARTH

HAGERSTOWN - Eight-year-old Blake Hepner said he couldn't explain why he enjoyed a performance by The Mason Dixon Barbershop Chorus before a packed house Saturday night inside the Kepler Theatre at Hagerstown Community College.

"It was just cool," he said.

Blake attended the concert with his mother, Kathy, who said she decided to get tickets after discovering earlier in the day that the chorus would sing.

"I just haven't heard a barbershop (chorus) in a long time," Kathy said. "I just like them."

About 25 members of the chorus took the stage to put on a production of "Grandpa's Attic," a musical about an elderly man, played by local actor Dick Hershey, who invites men to his home to move furniture. Nothing gets done, however, because they end up singing instead.

"I loved the sound of the music," Hagerstown resident Margaret Groff said during a brief intermission. "The old songs are wonderful."

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The audience applauded and laughed throughout the two-hour performance, which featured songs ranging from "Sentimental Journey" to "Can You Tame Wild Wimmin."

J. Norman Mayer, president of The Mason Dixon Barbershop Chorus, said the organization has performed a show almost every year for the last 45 years.

The chorus uses the proceeds from ticket sales to help local charities.

"We usually give $3,000 to $6,000 each year," he said. "All of us do what we're doing out of the goodness of our hearts."

Chorus member Jerry Hodge said the group practices from about 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. every Monday night at Haven Lutheran Church off Pennsylvania Avenue in Hagerstown.

He said the shows are the culmination of all the preparation.

"It's for our pleasure and to see people hear and love us," Hodge said.

He said new members are always welcome. All they have to do to join, Hodge said, is show up at one of the practices.

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