Want to Be a Thoroughbred?


Prospective Member

Information 2019


Revised 03/15/19

The Thoroughbreds

Thank you so much for visiting with us!  The following information will allow you to better understand the structure of our chorus and provide some of the reasons we love it like we do!

The Thoroughbreds are men who are Born to Sing, Bred for Excellence, Comrades with a Passion for Barbershop Harmony. We are committed to enriching our community through the joyful pursuit of musical excellence in the barbershop style of singing.  We are thrilled that you are interested in joining with us.


What is “Barbershop Singing”?

Barbershop harmony is four-part close harmony singing with a very characteristic sound. It can be sung by a quartet or by a chorus, such as the Thoroughbreds.  It gets its name from the origins of this kind of singing, as men would gather in barbershops or taverns or just about anywhere and improvise harmonies to a familiar melody.

Barbershop singing is divided into 4 parts

  • Tenor - Sings above the lead (highest notes)
  • Lead – Typically sings the melody of songs
  • Bass – Sings the lowest notes
  • Baritone – Typically sings between the Bass and the Lead

About The Thoroughbreds

The Thoroughbreds are a seven-time international champion chorus.

The Thoroughbreds won the international championship in 1962, 1966, 1969, 1974, 1978, 1981, and in 1984.  The chapter has also produced several championship quartets including the Bluegrass Student Union, Interstate Rivals, Second Edition, Forefront, and others.

What The Thoroughbreds Do

  • Weekly Rehearsals.  The Thoroughbreds rehearse every Monday night from 7-10 pm. When learn the craft of singing,we learn new songsand fine tune the ones we already know.Each member is provided with the sheet music and learning tracks with their part predominant to aid in learning the music at home. The Thoroughbreds take off a week or two during the Christmas Holidays.  Each rehearsal is open to the public.
  • Shows.  There are two major shows each year-the first weekend in December in Louisville and also an early Summer Show at the Ogle Center on the campus of IUS in New Albany.
  • Competitions.  The Thoroughbreds often compete in District competitions in the fall, with a chance to qualify for the right to go onto the international chorus contest in July.

Audition Information

The Thoroughbreds recommend auditioning on or after your third rehearsal visit.  Let amember of the music team know you would like to audition. The audition process is very simple.  It consists of singing your part in front of a small audition panel to a song the music team will provide .  Sheet music and learning tracts are available upon request. You may hold and refer from the sheet music if you like. Auditions are expected to be word and note perfect in the audition.

Auditions should be requested at least 1 week in advance, so that time can be allotted.

After your initial audition, if you do not pass on the first try, the Music Team may ask you to work on the song a little more and re-audition within the next few weeks.

Once you pass the audition you may now go forward with your membership application and dues.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact Frank Sellinger or any current member for more information. Sometimes guests have experienced feelings of intimidation or even feel overwhelmed with the commitment of joining our chorus. These feelings are very typical of new members, however, we will be here to support you, answer any questions, and help find solutions to make it easy and fun to join. Singing has been proven to add years to one's life, to cure ills, to help relieve stress and the pressures of today's fast-paced world-and it’s just plain FUN!

We are dedicated to the pursuit of excellence in singing barbershop harmony, and we are always looking for men of good character who are good singers to join our ranks.

Again, thank you for visiting us tonight, and keep singing!


Frank Sellenger

VP of Membership and Chapter Development

[email protected]