Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Looking Back on Southern Division 2012, Roanoke, VA

The Alexandria Harmonizers won the Southern Division chorus contest on Saturday, May 26th in Roanoke, VA.  This first place finish allows the chorus to move on to the Mid-Atlantic District contest in the fall.  It will be competing there for the right to move on to the International chorus competition in Toronto in July 2013.

Directed by Joe Cerutti, the chorus reprised their 1995 Gold Medal chorus package of “I’ll Be Seeing You” and “Sweet Georgia Brown.”  The package included the choreography of coach Geri Geis. There were 80 Harmonizers on the risers for this contest. The score was 86.4. The chorus appeared on the Saturday nite show-of-champions adding two new show numbers to the contest songs – “Jersey Boys Medley’ and “I’m the Music Man.”  It was a great hit. Joe Cerutti, Frank Fedarko and Doug White sang the solos. It was also fun to sing “Jersey Boys” with arranger Steve Delehanty in the audience.

Earlier in the weekend, 16 quartets with 35 of our members carried the Harmonizer name into the division quartet contest. ACME CHORD COMPANY with Dan O’Brien, Chris Susalka, Paul Grimes and Chris Yates won that contest. This is the 12th year in a row a quartet with at least one Harmonizer in the quartet that has won the division contest!  ACME received their championship trophy from last year’s winner, MAYHEM with Matt Fellows, Neil Dingle, Mike Pinto and Ken White.

Second place was YOUTH RECLAMATION PROJECT with Hardman Jones, Mike Wallen, Roger Tarpy and Vic Owen. Fourth place was M INT CONDITION with Bob Rodriguez Jr., Kevin McKenzie, Drew Fuller and Arthur Louis.

Sixth place was WHISTLE STOP with Dan O’Brien, Randy Eliason, Phil Ashford and Calvin Schnure.  Seventh place was CHORDWORX with Doug White, Tim Buell, Don Thompson and Edris Qarghah.   Ninth place was GOOD GUYS with Jim Lake, Frank Fedarko, Joel Golden and Don Dillingham.

Tied for tenth was HANDSOME REWARD with Mario Sengco, Mike Edison, Vince Lynch and Michael Gilmore, and INTERLUDE with Bob Wilson, Gene Schwilke, Rich Montgomery and Warren Strandberg.

Twelfth was OLD TOWNE with Carl Kauffmann, Roger Day, Brad Jones and Calvin Schnure.  thirteenth was BLARNEY BROTHERS with Gary Bibens, Mike Calhoun, Bob Johnson and Tom Pearce; sixteenth was OLD TOWN SOUND with Alan Kousen, Bob Caldwell, Bob Mattes and Dave Welter; seventeenth was WITH HHONORS with Doug White, Edris Qarghah, Phil Ashford and Scott Kahler; eighteenth was BECAUSE YOU ASKED with Drew Fuller, Brian Ammerman, Jeff Salino and Steve Murane; twentieth was SHADES OF HARMONY with Edris Qarghah, Clyde  Crusenberry, Phil Ashford and Sam   McFarland; twenty-second was FOUR IN THE MORNING with Mike Geipil, Ron Nichols, Gene Thompson and Emmitt Totty; twenty-fourth was FAST & SHARP with Scip Garling, Josh Roots, Jeremy Richardson and Chris Clark.

Since Roanoke was a long drive for most Harmonizers, everyone arrived Friday nite and so we had a huge crowd on hand for the evening quartet contest, wearing ribbons to brag about the 16 “Harmonizer” quartets and cheering loudly for the 35 members representing us on stage.

Steve White was emcee for that session. Dennis Ritchey was emcee for the chorus contest, and Bill Colosimo was emcee for the Saturday show. As usual there were a number of our members working behind the scenes as district leaders and events team members.  New member Gerry Fuller got the Harmo truck their (tho without ac) and a good riser crew went right to work.  We had our chapter banner posted proudly in the contest hall.

As usual we recognized the guys who were singing in their first contest as a Harmonizer.  It happened fast, but YeEd thinks it was Doug White, Calvin Schnure, Randall Eliason, Gerry Fuller, Tom Frederick, Bob Griesemer, Mike Vlcej, TJ Donahue,  and Shawn Tallant. 

The Saturday morning chorus contest started pretty much like always for us.  Early rise to grab some coffee and get to our rehearsal room by 8:30. Lots of excitement after the good successes of our quartets the nite before, then assistant director Will Cox did a warm up for us.  Joe went right to work on reminders, drills, and getting us to let go.  The FRIENDS OF HARMONY presented each singer with a cutout “wishing well” and a good luck penny.

This was the first time our chapter had competed at division since 2000. Thanks to chapter leaders who helped organize things and especially to weekend chairman Craig Kujawa. 

The second place chorus was James River, VA.  Third was Roanoke Valley, VA and fourth was Richmond, VA, directed by Mike Wallen.  Bill Colosimo directed DC chorus in seventh place. In addition, some of our members actually sang on stage with other choruses as reported by Dixie KennettChuck Powell with Arlington; Drew Fuller and Bob Wilson with James River; Bob Hirsh and Bob Wells with DC; Mike Geipil with Richmond; Thom Faircloth with Charlottesville;  Michael Calhoun with Harrisonburg; and Bob Ulibarri with LaPlata.

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 with the Alexandria Harmonizer Chapter. —YeEd.)

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