OLIVESVBURG - A Crestview teacher this summer attained a top barbershop director credential held by only a few members of the Barbershop Harmony Society nationwide.
Trevor Garrabrant, 32, completed course work at the Director's College of the Harmony University held in Nashville to become a "certified director."
Within the Barbershop Harmony Society (BHS) in the United States, there are 600 choruses with a total of 1,000 directors and assistant directors. Only 60 directors or 6 percent have attained the credential, according to R.F Miller, vice president of marketing and public relations for the Fun Center Chordsmen, of which Garrabrant is a member and front line director.
The busy vocal music teacher at Crestview Middle and High schools is also the school's cross country coach. He is also the certified director of the Fun Center Chordsmen.
This week he said the Harmony University classes allowed him to become a better director at school and with the Fun Center Chordsmen.
"This Harmony University brings in professors and top-notch barbershop people from all around the world," he said.
"One of the biggest focuses of the director's college is to get your pattern down and let them sing through your pattern and don't let your pattern get in the way of their singing," he said.
"That whole week is about becoming a better director and making your chorus, wherever they are, taking them to another level," he said.
Trevor has attended four of the week-long annual BHS barbershop schools.
A 2003 Mount Gilead High School graduate, Garrabrant is a graduate of Bowling Green State University with a degree in music education. He has been a member of the Mansfield Chapter (the Fun Center Chordsmen) of the Barbershop Harmony Society (BHS) since 2007. He became an assistant director of the chorus in 2009, co-director of the chorus in 2013 and became the front line director in April of 2015.
He sings lead in the barbershop quartet Bravada, the Johnny Appleseed District 2008 Novice Quartet Champions.
Garrabrant said in high school there was a slew of guys who loved to sing.
"We would grab random pieces of music out of the music library, we would learn them and sing them at our variety shows. It was more pop a cappella group, not barbershop," he said. "That's where it all started. Randy Mann was my choir director at Mount Gilead and he was a huge influence on my music career."
Garrabrant said he sang in college and the barbershop influence began.
His love of music began listening to his grandmother harmonizing to the Gaither Brothers. He sang in church, youth choirs and was in band in high school.
He helps out with the marching band at Crestview.
He said the Fun Center Chordsmen asked him to take over and he knew he wasn't able to take them to another level without further training.
His two favorite passions are singing and running, he said. "It (the director's training in Nashville) took my skill sets to a whole new level."
Garrabrant, who started out as a tenor, sings lead vocals most of the time. He loves listening in his spare time to John Mayer's blues album, Jason Mrax and Pentatonix.
He and his wife Megan and two sons, Keaton and Sawyer, live in Mansfield.