Check out the Thoroughbreds' commercial on WHAS!
A Brief History of the
|In July of 2006, The Thoroughbred Chorus
decided to sponsor a $1,000 grand prize karaoke contest for
adults aged 21years and over. The Thoroughbreds viewed the
contest as an opportunity for both membership development
and public relations.
|The contest (then called the J-Town Idol Karaoke Contest) was
held in September to coincide with the Jeffersontown Gaslight
Festival. The timing was designed to maximize the public exposure
that the festival presented. Members of The Thoroughbred Chorus and
The Pride of Kentucky Sweet Adelines chorus served as judges
for the event.
The inaugural contest was a resounding success.
Sixty-seven adult contestants from across Kentuckiana
competed at seven different locations in Jeffersontown over a
nine-day period. The contest was one of the most patronized events
to take place in Jeffersontown during the week of the Gaslight
Festival, and the Thoroughbreds were so pleased with the results
that they decided to make the contest an annual event. Not long
after the contest had ended, the Jeffersontown Chamber of
Commerce approached the Thoroughbreds about making the contest
an official event of the Gaslight Festival.
||Officially renamed the Gaslight Festival
Karaoke Contest, the contest was expanded in 2007 to include six
additional qualifying rounds and four quarter-final rounds. Seven
different Jeffersontown establishments hosted various rounds of
competition over an 18-day period. The contest also added divisions
for both kids and teens, making it one of the largest events
of its kind in the Commonwealth of Kentucky. One hundred and
thirty adults, kids and teens competed in the 2007 contest!
The 2008 contest was literally a “whirlwind” of an event.
Hurricane Ike blew through Jeffersontown on September 14
with wind gusts in excess of 85 mph. More than 300,000 homes
and businesses across the Louisville metropolitan area lost
power for up to ten days. The windstorm and power outage
forced us to cancel one qualifying round for all divisions
and we had to reschedule an adult quarter-final round.
Despite the abbreviated schedule, the contest had its best
turn out to date.
In 2009, the contest once again set a new attendance record
and reached a milestone by topping 100 adult contestants.
The huge crowd for the Finals at the PassTime Entertainment
Tent demonstrated the popularity of this contest throughout
|The 2010 contest set yet another new attendance record,
with more than 140 kids, teens and adults competing.
Some innovative changes to the contest were introduced, such
as the photo I.D. cards and a program of events that was
distributed to competitors and many of the audience members.
We will continue to tweak the system as needed and expect
the contest to grow for many years to
About the Thoroughbreds
The Thoroughbred Chorus is a not for profit
501(c)3 charitable organization, dedicated to excellence in
singing a cappella harmony music. As a chartered chapter of the
Barbershop Harmony Society, the Thoroughbreds have sung for
dignitaries, civic functions, sporting events and all sorts of music
extravaganzas. Audiences range from small, private groups to crowds as large as 13,000!
The Thoroughbreds perform every year at the
ribbon-cutting ceremonies of the Kentucky State Fair and they host
an annual show on the first Saturday of December in downtown
Louisville. And in an event that is as much fun for the members as
it is for the audiences, numerous quartets from the chapter fan out
over the city every February to deliver Singing Valentines.
||In 1946, the Louisville No. 1 Chapter was
established as a member of what was then known as the Society for
the Preservation and Encouragement of Barber Shop Quartet Singing in
America, Inc. (SPEBSQSA). In 1958, the “Thoroughbreds”
entered and won their first district contest which qualified them to
compete in the international chorus competition. In 1962, the
chorus won its first international championship! Six more
international championships followed, giving the Thoroughbreds a
total of seven Gold Medals.
The Thoroughbreds have also been the home to a
number of outstanding international quartet champions, including
Bluegrass Student Union (1978), Interstate Rivals (1987),
Second Edition (1989) and the 2003 Senior Quartet Champions,
Today, the Thoroughbreds are actively searching
the area for the next generation of outstanding male vocalists
to help carry on their tradition of excellence in singing and
performing. The Thoroughbreds proudly call Jeffersontown,
Kentucky their home and the chapter meets every Monday night at
Jim Miller Hall at 10609 Watterson Trail.
For more information about The Thoroughbred
Chorus, go to the chapter website at
or call 502-267-SING (502-267-7464).