This week I attended a karaoke competition. If you’re wondering what that means exactly (like I was a mere 48 hours ago), I’ll fill you in:
Similar to those adult kickball or skeeball or softball leagues, there is apparently such a thing as a competitive karaoke league. You can join a team, make lifelong friends, and sing your heart out for what I’m guessing is probably not a real prize. I can’t believe I’m learning about this so late in life!
My friend Brittany invited me when she found out her roommate Caitlin was competing. I started the evening by watching a riveting game of chess in Union Square.
The competition was held at Karaoke Cave, which was only funny because it was located in the basement of a fancy restaurant.
There were many amusing aspects about this event, but my favorite was how seriously everyone took the competition. To their credit, it was the playoffs… so the stakes were high. Caitlin said hello and told us that things were very stressful; their team (named the Umbilical Chords) was in last place, and their tenor had just flaked despite having rehearsed with them the past two nights. This was the moment I realized that I had a lot of respect for Caitlin.
Next, the spectacle began. It was 80s night, and costumes/props were highly encouraged. The Baroque New Yorkers did a rendition of Bonnie Tyler’s “I Need a Hero” that referenced sandwiches constantly. The Umbilical Chords recreated Madonna’s “Borderline,” where Edward Snowden tried to cross the border and was literally shoved at each “keep pushing me” line. And (my personal favorite!), Here Comes Treble sang “Eternal Flame” by The Bangles while desperately trying to blow out trick candles during every musical interlude.
We headed out after four people dressed as Golden Girls recreated “Thank You for Being a Friend.” For more laughs, check out the NYC Karoake League’s recaps of their competitions, such as this one.