The word “Troubadour” comes from Old French and evokes groups of singers traveling through medieval countryside. For 40 years, a local group of singers have been doing just that, singing for groups that otherwise might not be able to see live music.
The Troubadours, a group made up mostly of men from Northfield as well as a few residents of Cannon Falls and Faribault, celebrated their 40th anniversary with an event Sunday at FiftyNorth including a potluck with former directors and memorabilia as well as group songs. Some of those present also included widows of singers and family members.
Co-chair Philip Peterson estimated that around 100 people attended. The event included a potluck dinner and a memorabilia exhibit with albums, concert programs and photos.
âIt went very, very well,â he said.
Former band directors Gerry Meidt, Rhonda Reece and Karen Christ spoke and the band sang three songs.
The Troubadours, a four-part choir of tenors, lead singers, baritone and bass, rehearse weekly and sing at approximately 20 events a year. Their selections include a mix of folk, spiritual and patriotic tunes. They perform at venues such as Northfield Senior Center, Minnesota State Academy for the Blind in Faribault, Laura Baker Services, Northfield Retirement Center, and The Gardens at Cannon Falls.
âWe do a lot of performances,â said Peterson.
Peterson, a member of the Troubadours for about 10 years, noted that the group’s predecessor was Northfield Men’s Chorus.
âIt’s basically become a senior men’s choir because we do all of our appearances and rehearsals during the day when the younger ones are working,â he said.
“We have a music library of hundreds of songs, so we’ve used it over the years, so some of the songs we do are a blast from the past.”
Peterson’s love for singing drew him to the group.
âI also do other kinds of music,â he said. âThey have some kind of special ministry. Most of the time, we sing for an audience where people cannot attend concerts themselves. “
Peterson’s favorite part of The Troubadours is acting.
âTrying to make music well and have fun with it,â he said. âWe also want to entertain, because we also do new humorous stuff. It is not a test to see how well we can sing, but rather it is an offering of music to entertain or entertain.
For Peterson, interested singers should join because the Troubadours provide community service and outreach to people who don’t often have the opportunity to hear live music.
“It’s great to be with a group,” he said. âSome of our guys are widowers, and it’s really important for people who are alone to be around people, to be around things. It is also a good outlet for that.
The Troubadours Spring Concert will take place on May 19 at 3 p.m. at Bethel Lutheran Church, 1321 North Ave., with guest violinist Catherine Carson.
Contact Associate Editor Sam Wilmes at 507-645-1115.
Â© Copyright 2019 APG Media of Southern Minnesota. All rights reserved.