On Oct. 20, Melynnie Williams was in Nashville, performing for the Sweet Adelines International competition as part of the singing quartet Zing!, much as she has for the past eight years with the group.


On Oct. 20, Melynnie Williams was in Nashville, performing for the Sweet Adelines International competition as part of the singing quartet Zing!, much as she has for the past eight years with the group.

However, this time, the group came home with the prize — Zing! was crowned the 2010 Sweet Adelines International Champion Quartet.

“It’s really a very special, wonderful honor,” Williams said. “Some quartets never make first place, so it’s rather humbling.”

Sweet Adelines International is a large organization of female barbershop quartets, conducting an international competition every year. This year’s competition was in Nashville, and next year it will be in Seattle.

Williams is one of four members of the group Zing!, an a capella quartet that has been together since 2002. The other members are Susan Ives of Tecumseh, Michelle Hunget of Lenexa and Mary Rhea of Norman, Okla. Williams lives in Newton and sings bass in the group.

This is the first time Zing! has won the highest award in the competition.

“My parents were there,” Williams said. “Out of the eight competitions we’ve been to, they’ve been to seven of them, and this time we won.”

Williams has a sweeping passion for music; in addition to Zing!, she’s also a member of the Kansas City Chorus and the Oklahoma Jubilee Chorus in Tulsa. She travels between Tulsa and Kansas City quite often, sometimes several times a month. The distance between Newton and Williams’ other group members can be difficult at times when it comes to rehearsals and practice, as well.

“The fact that we live so far apart makes it hard to do local events,” Williams said, “but it’s great to work with three other women who have the same drive and determination for the music.”

Zing! had three upcoming Christmas concerts, in fact — in Wichita, Kansas City and Oklahoma City, respectively. The group also has released a self-titled CD, available for purchase on their Web site, zing-quartet.com. The group is gearing up to begin recording their second album very soon. On the surface, it may seem that the success of these four keeps propelling them forward, but more than anything else, it’s the love of the craft.

“We perform; we want to express passion and feelings in the music,” Williams said. “That’s why we do it.”

For more information visit, Zing!’s Web site at zing-quartet.com and the Sweet Adelines International Web site at www.sweetadelineintl.org.