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2016 Singing School

The first annual Quay Smathers Memorial Singing School was a delightful success! The gallery begins with the preparations and ends with the final group picture - showing that all the hard work done by so many people was worth the effort. The video clips show just some of the fun we had that day. We think Quay would have approved!                                                                                                                                                     

Note: Photos are arranged in 4 separate slideshows,

Click on First Photo to Begin Slideshow #1
Click on First Photo to Begin Slideshow #2
Click on First Photo to Begin Slideshow #3
Click on First Photo to Begin Slideshow #4
Shaped-Notes in the Round
The School participants try their first part singing and even impressed themselves!

2016 School Videos

We were fortunate to have Quay's grandson, Emmy Award winning filmmaker Evan Shaw, videotape the School. At some point the footage will be used in a larger documentary about Blue Ridge shaped-note singing. For now, Elizabeth Smathers-Shaw, Evan's mom, is editing and posting clips for enjoying on the website. If you attended the 2016 School, look closely - you might see yourself! (Note: Elizabeth makes NO claims to having won any Emmy's, but she's learning a lot from Evan, so who day?) UPDATE: August 2018 Liz did win an Emmy for her soundtrack to one of Evan's documentary films!

Bass Section Reshearsal

Larry Beveridge does an expert job leading our three adventurous bass singers in their part on "New Britain" (better known as "Amazing Grace.") The bass singers grabbed the historic third floor chapel for their rehearsals, and you can hear the altos below them now and then. 

Lead Section Rehearsal

June Smathers-Jolley and Lynn Shaw put the lead singers through their paces, while June admits she has a problem with late night singing on her houseboat.

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