Sunday, April 27, 2014

  Looking Back on the April 22nd Chapter Meeting

Durant was mighty hot this week – no air conditioning and lots of great singing!

The usual set up crew work was done on time and another large crowd was around for the stage presence review on the stage with Chuck McKeever and help from some of his visual team members.

Associate director Tony Colosimo did the warm ups for the nite and turned the ready-chorus over to director Joe Cerutti.  He welcomed the big crowd on the risers; saluted Dick Hall on his 82nd birthday and lead the singing to celebrate; and reported that Rick Wagner was in the queue after his operation today. 

Sandy Stamps reported on a call from Rick’s wife, Peggy, that he was able to sit up and even make some sounds.  YeEd received a call on Wednesday afternoon relayed thru Gary Mankin: Gary had spoken with Rick, who was upbeat and is eating solid foods. They took out 35% of the leg muscle and a chunk of tissue the size of a Nerf football. They are waiting for pathology reports and for word as to physical therapy.  He is in the Walter Reed Bethesda facility and of course cannot have visitors at this time. YeEd suspects we will get word as things unfold.  Our thoughts are with Rick and his family!!

France trip project leader, Ken Fess, did a narration with photos about the situation in France in 1944. Very informative and moving details.

Then it was right to work on songs for the Normandy trip and shows in 2014.  Tony conducted a barbershop craft session and then we held three more rounds of “Make Me Better” where evaluator/listeners stand in front of a volunteer who sings with the chorus.  There is time for some feedback and each volunteer singer gets written notes from his listener.

Operations vp Bob Blair conducted the chapter meeting. He encouraged members to note the business opportunities during the break for scrip, 50/50, France shirts, Harmony on the Harbor tickets, and Crescendo tickets. He continued his push to get members to wear their name badges.

Ken Fess was at his station this week to meet with anyone who needed to see him regarding payments or submitting information requested. Peter Hubbard was taking order for t-shirts for the trip.

Bob Blair announced that the chapter will be moving all of its stored materials in the back of Durant to storage units which building improvements are made.  Those men who volunteered to help will be working this Saturday starting at 11am.

Calvin Schnure welcomed more tag singers to join him in the lobby at break.,

Anyone interested in applying for a Harmonizer scholarship to attend Harmony University in Nashville this summer should speak with Steve White to apply. This is a $640 value.

Lou Bergner was on the risers this week and it was announced that he sang in the Ontario District Seniors’ Quartet champs, ACCAPELLA UNPLUGGED, at the prelims up there recently.

Membership vp Jeremy Richardson with help from Rich Hewitt welcomed the guests this week.  Congrats to Jeremy for tackling refurbishing the Harmo Membership Kiosk.  In researching how long it has been a Harmo icon, YeEd has spoken with Scott Werner and John Adams. Dick Hall spoke to Terry Jordan and Jack Crickenberger. Crickenberger joined in 1950 and he says he recalls signing things on that cabinet. For sure, Dick and Jack and all the others we spoke with know it was being used in 1964-66 when we joined. Soooo -- it is nearly as old as the chapter (which begins its 66th year this month). Doug White helped get the new rolling platform for the cabinet.  Jeremy reports that when he sanded the cabinet he found several colors of paint including green and not-surprising, some red/white/blue.


After break, we worked hard on more of our music and the visuals with choreographer Carlos Barillo.  It was a good work session, including sectionals to relearn “Music of the Night” to sing with the Ambassadors of Harmony on the June 21st Crescendo show.

Looking ahead to our fall season and life after Normandy, music and performance vp Steve White suggests that, “While we are all very busy preparing for the Veterans Tribute Show, the France/Germany Trip, and the Crescendo Show, please do as Bob Rhome has encouraged and begin making your housing arrangements and purchase a convention registration for the M-AD Fall Convention and Contest in Wildwood, NJ (October 24-26). Many of the hotel/motels are already fully booked or reserved, so don’t delay. There are also condos available near the Convention Center at very reasonable prices. You can go to Groupanizer right now to note your intentions (30 men have already done so, thanks). Let’s set a goal to stage no less than 110 men … aw heck, let’s just make it 125 and blow the roof off the place. This will be the next step in our run towards the Pittsburgh International Convention in July 2015, and our District seeding will be important in getting that all-important buzz going across the Society. The current plan for District is to perform “Anything Goes” and our “new ballad” which will be introduced in the coming weeks. For International next year, there will be terrific new uptune with crazy-fun front row choreography.

Harmonizers can support two of our youngest members in their school performance of  “SPAMalot”  Ben Roberts (as Sir Galahad) and David Jarzen (as Sir Robin) at West Potomac High School,  May 1st-3rd.  Our own Peelee Clark is their teacher, director and choreographer for the show. They would most like us to be at the Saturday, May 3rd show at 7pm, as this performance will be their entry into the National Capital Area Cappies Awards program.  For tickets you may go to They are $12.

NOTE that next Tuesday we have a fun nite with coach Cindy Hansen Ellis in the house.  Don’t miss this chance to improve your performance skills.

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 during the 66th year of the Alexandria Harmonizer Chapter. —YeEd.)

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