Barbershop music began in the United States, but the style has spread itself worldwide. The Barbershop Harmony Society only covers the United States and Canada, but barbershoppers in other countries have founded their own societies to spread the word in their parts of the world and help Keep the Whole World Singing. BHS has formed formal alliances with many of these brethren brotherhoods.
Each Affiliate society holds its own annual quartet and chorus competitions. Competitors scoring above a certain threshold are invited to compete in the annual BHS International Competition, exactly as if they had qualified in a BHS District. Few actually attend, due to the cost and rigors of international travel. As of July 2010, three (sets of) Collegiate Quartet gold medals have gone to Affiliate quartets, as well as four (sets of) Quartet bronze medals in the open competition.
During the BHS International Convention, national anthems are sung at the the opening of each quartet session. Canada and the US are honored before the quartet finals; they have the most citizens in attendance, and the host Society (BHS) covers both countries. Affiliate quartets sing their own national anthems to open the quarterfinal sessions. Quartets competing in session #1 help open session #2, and vice versa.
Official Affiliate (Men's) Societies
|HI||Harmony, Inc.||US and Canada|
|LABBS||Ladies Association of British Barbershop Singers||United Kingdom|
|SAI||Sweet Adelines International||global|