SMO on steps

The Singing Men of OHIO will perform seven concerts during their Spring Tour.

Photo courtesy of: The Singing Men of OHIO

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Singing Men of OHIO start multi-state tour

This Friday, the Singing Men of OHIO (SMO) will launch a multi-state tour  covering Virginia, Pennsylvania and Ohio.

The first stop is Albemarie High School in Gallipolis, Ohio. From there, the men have almost daily concerts until the tour’s finale on March 25.

“Our final concert will be at the Harrisburg Capitol Rotunda, and the acoustics in that building will be phenomenal," said Kyle Raffel, SMO president. “It will be a great way to end our tour.”

The tour also provides opportunities for team building.

“My favorite part of every tour would be how close the group gets throughout the week,” explained Raffel. “Spring tour is the time when the SMO members really get to know each other. It's also when the quality of our music really peaks. Another element of tour I love is the tour bus. Fifty guys on a tour bus for seven days gets pretty interesting.”

The crowded bus is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to challenges associated with launching a weeklong choral tour.

“The most difficult element of tour is the planning process," said Raffel. "Our Tour Manager Joe Larocca, a senior, has done a great job of finding venues for us to sing and also setting up lodging. The tour manager position is a very intensive and vital to our success."

In the past, SMO has performed upwards of 10 concerts during their spring tour. According to Raffel, this year's schedule is seven performances in seven days.

“I love this opportunity because it is a cheap way to see cities I may have never seen before,” said Raffel.  He added, "It's great publicity for the University and it really is a blast.”