Our Chorus

Island City Chorus is a group of men and women from the Greater Montreal area who take pride in singing harmoniously and have fun singing four-part a cappella music in the barbershop style.

Our music covers a broad range of tastes, from classic older tunes to Broadway, contemporary and blues. We enjoy performing for organizations, companies, municipalities and at private events.

The ability to read music is not a requirement for singers joining the Island City Chorus. Whether you have a musical background or not, we assist you in learning the songs using sheet music and CD recordings. You'll soon learn the technique of harmonizing and blending your voice with others.

Island City Chorus activities encourage and promote singing in the Montreal area. We believe very strongly in the importance and value of vocal music for relaxation, mood enhancement and creating friendships.


Barbershop is a style of music that is arranged in four-part a capella (or unaccompanied) for male and/or female voices. It is performed by either a quartet of the four parts or a chorus where a larger number of singers sing each of the four parts. Structurally, both a quartet and a chorus sing the same notes. Our art form is one of four musical styles originating in North America. Almost any song can be arranged for barbershop singing. The four parts are
bass, baritone, lead and tenor.


The bass is the deepest voice in barbershop. Technically, basses sing the "roots and tonics" which are the foundational notes of the chord being sung. Depending on the arrangement, basses are variously called upon to sing drone-like melodic lines to lively, percussive rhythms full of onomatopeias.


The bass and baritone together build a harmonic foundation that through sound wave physics, produces subtle higher notes called "overtones." The baritone line is often un-intuitive and sounds quite 'jazzy' when sung on its own. Singing baritone requires a good sense of tuning and a disciplined approach to learning the part.


The lead sings the part that people will recognize as the familiar melody. It is a lively part that demands vocal agility and range. Oftentimes, the lead be called upon to sing more words, and with timing that is different than the other parts. Singing the melody may sound like the easiest job in barbershop, but it's not!


In most music, the melody is carried in the topmost pitch of an arrangement. Barbershop is different: the highest pitch (called 'tenor' whether sung by a man or a woman) is a harmony part that floats lightly above the lead, in order to enhance it, in a musical interval called a "third" or four semitones.


Are you a person over the age of 18 who has always enjoyed singing in the car or the shower? Have you been a member of a church or synagogue choir, a glee club, or taken singing lessons? Perhaps you have sung in an a cappella group in CEGEP or at University and you want to keep singing but do not know where to go?

Island City Chorus, a mixed acappella group serving the Greater Montreal region including The West Island and Laval, invites you to attend one of our upcoming rehearsals to experience the harmonies, the blending of voices and the rich sound of four-part singing arrangements.

Email us to arrange a visit:

Or call us by clicking on phone icon:

Rehearsal details are outlined on our Contact page.