Big crowd again tonite filling the risers set up in the straight line arrangement so we can be prepared for the Carnegie Hall stage set, as well as the Supreme Court show. Makes it hard to hear for the singers for sure. Last week, our coach David Wright mentioned to Director Joe that the chorus was sounding great even with the challenge of standing on those straight lined risers and with no AC.
The usual complete room set up was done by a crew about 6 pm. Altho we are still not using the mirror panels, we added the keyboard this week. YeEd found out the keyboard is provided by the Rec Dept from one of their classrooms.
After warm ups conducted by Will Cox, Joe launched an aggressive work session on the contest package. He used the key board to strengthen some difficult passages. He coached many intricate details of interpretation. He helped the guys discover words to emphasize. And he asked for guys to understand mood changes in the songs. Plus he stressed important spots NOT to take a breath!
The evening included some time for the chorus to make their personal self evaluation tapes.
Another big chunk of time was used to refurbish the other songs to be used for the Carnegie Hall show. Joe used the keyboard and the computer and screen to help the guys sight-read the two songs we will sing with the Japanese singers on the show – “Let The Sunshine In” and “May Each Day.” Actually we will use music in black folders for these two songs.
Joe also introduced the plans for how the chorus will perform with ‘ROUND MIDNIGHT using the song “Shout” to involve the audience. It went great and will be fun.
The front row worked really hard this week to finalize a “big” ending for “Stars and Stripes” with lots of marching. Same with going back to performing the long version of “New York New York.’
Then it was time for the chapter meeting period. Operations vp, Mark Klostermeyer conducted the session as usual and kept the announcements flowing.
Director Joe announced a change in the contest uniform that means we each will buy a shirt for the event. Stay tuned for turning in sizes and making the modest payment.
Speaking of payment, past treasurer, Howard Nestlerode, was collecting monies from guys to cover costs for Carnegie Hall box lunch or guest for Sat event; contest retreat reg and/or extra fee for coming on Fri nite (Note that this has become a popular thing to do); and Harmony College East fee and/or extra nite fees.
Secretary, Chris Buechler, reminded everyone to take action to renew their dues. Earlier in the week he sent an email reporting that some of our long-time members who live outside the area or do not sing with us these days had renewed such as Scott Werner - 49 years, Don Johnson - 43 years, Bob Hirsh - 41 year, Phil Stern - 25 years. John Jackson - 24 years.
Membership vp, Phil Ashford, introduced our guests which included two applicants.
Southern Division chairman for the chapter’s hosting plan, Scott Kahler, asked guys to mark their calendars and to be prepared to help escort quartets and choruses, help host judges, and other things we need to do in support of the district’s operations team. Friday nite, May 27 and Saturday, May 28.
Marketing vp, Steve Lingo, encouraged the guys to prepare to participate in the social period at HCE and get to know other members from other chapters who will be there. That means staying around on Saturday nite.
Music vp, Terry Reynolds, reminded everyone – basically, everything is mandatory from now til Kansas City. Be sure to get to the vocal and visual studios. They are a must. YeEd has heard several gents comment on how beneficial the studio was for them.
Terry also announced that the Alexandria Chapter will offer scholarships to the Society Harmony University in St. Joe, MO, in July/August. There is an application to get one of those scholarships, so contact Terry. If you wanna know more about the Harmony U, talk to Terry, Chris Buechler or Joe Cerutti as they can tell you about the kinds of classes and fun you will have. Quartets can go too.
After some coffee and goodies, it was back to work on Carnegie Hall show music.
Joe pleaded with the guys to work at home – please do at least 5% more!!!
We had two specialforces guys on the risers this week – Mike Wallen and Bob Wilson.
Congrats to new Air Force Colonel, Bruce Roehm, promoted last Friday. His ceremony included a great tribute to the Alexandria Harmonizers. A small ensemble sang the National Anthem. Geri Geis help pin on his new rank.
YeEd heard that Rick Taylor’s Dundalk Sweet Adeline Chorus pulled off a huge upset and won this past weekend’s Regional contest.
Don’t forget to wear your (or a) name tag at all Harmonizer functions. Maybe keep it in your barbershop briefcase. It helps the guests and newer members!
Until next time – editorjack!
(This message is prepared for your review if you were there, for your information if you had to miss, and as a historical record of the great things going on each week at an Alexandria Harmonizer Chapter meeting. —YeEd.)