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A cappella group hoping to get royal treatment in Columbus show

Courtesy of Ben Wright

Christopher Gabbitas was sitting in his office working as an attorney when he got a phone call offering him an opportunity of a lifetime.

Gabbitas was given a chance to audition for Grammy-winning British a cappella vocal ensemble, The King’s Singers.

“It was a dream come true,” said Gabbitas, a baritone in the group.

The King’s Singers will be traveling around the world during their 2011-12 tour and will make a stop in Columbus to perform at the Southern Theatre on Nov. 2 at 8 p.m.

The group is made up of six members. The original group was formed in 1968.

Gabbitas said becoming a member of The King’s Singers is not an easy task and he had to go through three auditions.

“We’ve only had 22 different members in 43 years,” he said. “When someone does leave, instead of taking applicants, recommendations are made and those people are made contact with. If that didn’t happen there would be far too many applications.”

Gabbitas said the opportunity to travel the world is amazing but not always glamorous.

“We realize we’re lucky but sitting on an airplane all day and continuously packing and unpacking is quite dull,” he said. “But walking out on stage and meeting so many faces from different cultures is a great blessing. We’re very fortunate.”

This year, The King’s Singers will release an album recorded with the renowned Concordia College Choir and will perform excerpts from that album as well as songs from The Beatles, Queen, and Jason Mraz on their worldwide tour.

Gabbitas said their newest album has a more classical vibe.

“Our last album was a bit poppy,” he said. “This time we have more studio influence in it. It still has some pop but it’s a nice mix.”

Gabbitas said his proudest moment with The King’s Singers is a tie between his first concert and winning a Grammy.

“My first concert was extraordinary,” Gabbitas said. “From that moment on I knew I was 100 percent a member of the group. It’s an experience where you just feel like you’ve arrived.”

To this day, Gabbitas said, he is still shocked about the Grammy win.

“To be nominated is great but to win is amazing. It was a humbling and proud moment,” he said. “And each time I walk in the room and see it sitting there I just think ‘Wow.'”

Gabbitas said that attendants should come to the concert not knowing exactly what to expect.

“We want to touch in to the huge range of emotions humans can feel,” he said. “Laugh, cry, be happy, be sad. It’s a snapshot into our regular lives with our pieces. We want people to see the sublime beauty and inspire them to go out and maybe want to try themselves.”

Leigh Bennett, a fourth-year in economics won’t be attending the November concert.

“I won’t be going and although they’re really talented, I don’t think they’ll appeal to a lot of Ohio State students,” Bennett said.

Another student that won’t be in attendance is Kiersten Lorenzen, a fourth-year in dental hygiene.

“I don’t think they’ll be of interest to Ohio State students,” Lorenzen said. “It’s more something that their parents would go to.”

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