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L-R: Tim Broersma, John Newell, Tom Metzger and Mark Metzger

Realtime is the Barbershop Harmony Society's 2005 International Quartet Champion.

Quartet Members

Winning Members:

  • Tenor: Tim Broersma
  • Lead: John Newell
  • Bari: Mark Metzger
  • Bass: Tom Metzger

Replacement Members:

  • Lead: Doug Broersma (2008-2011)

Realtime was rare in that the quartet's contest scores improved every time they competed. Even in 2005, when they surprised everyone to win, their scores increased with each round of competition.

This quartet brought to light a style of singing that was effortless, free, relaxed and yet produced an incredible ring like audiences had never heard.


Realtime formed when four young but experienced barbershoppers from three different nations found themselves living within one hour's drive of each other in early 2003.

It all began in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada as two brothers Mark (bari) & Tom Metzger (bass) grew up singing together following in the footsteps of their father, Charlie. They were a matched set in every quartet through the years; The Edge, Sonic Boom and Counterpoint.

Around the same time, John Newell (lead), was singing barbershop in Australia. He is a two-time Barbershop Harmony Australia (BHA) quartet champion (1999 / 2001) with Southern Cross (lead). He is also the first International Champion singer to have been born and raised outside North America.

In the 1990s, a young tenor named Tim Broersma started singing on the International contest stage with his father, Doug. He won his first district quartet championship at age 14 in 1993 with Milky Way. He was also active in Studio One, Counterpoint and Bachelor Party.

They would all cross paths and decide to travel this road together as four brothers.

The name Realtime was chosen by crossing all other ideas off a list, yet reflects their desire to be "in the moment" when performing.

They held their first rehearsal in March of 2003 and performed for their first show with their home chapter (Greater Vancouver / Gentlemen of Fortune Chorus) in June. In 2004 they represented the Evergreen District in Louisville and placed 7th in their first International contest together. Later that year they won the Evergreen District Quartet Championship. The following year, they won the International Gold Medal in Salt Lake City.

John Newell retired from the quartet at the beginning of 2008 due to commitments with his young family. Doug Broersma, Tim's father, became the Lead until Tim also retired from the group in 2011 for his young family.

Recent History and Reformation

Realtime has reformed as of 2015 and is performing occasionally. Their most recent appearance was as headliners for the Westminster Chorus's show in April 2015.

Contest Placement


2004 2005
7th 1st

District (EVG)


Four Brothers (2005) Ain't That a Kick (2006) Take 5 (2010)
When The Saints Go Marchin' In Come On Get Happy Take Five
Come Fly With Me They Can't Take That Away From Me Little Help From My Friends
Loch Lomond Heart of My Heart Over the Rainbow
I've Got A Gal In Kalamazoo I'll Follow the Sun Rocky Top
Four Brothers I'm a Believer Blackbird
The Birth Of The Blues Cry Me A River On a Clear Day
All Of Me Come fly With Me (live in SLC) Beautiful Love
Yesterday I Heard The Rain Waltz for Debby Little Boy Lost
Keep Your Sunny Side Up Ain't That a Kick in the Head Flight of the Foo Birds
For Once In My Life One Note Samba Follow the Drinkin' Gourd
Everything's Comin' Up Roses Midnight Serenade Listen to the Music
It Was A Very Good Year Come Back to Me Funny Valentine
Anthem We Never Really Say Goodbye Georgia on My Mind

External Links

Barbershop Harmony Society - International Quartet Champions
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