Monday, May 19, 2014

Looking Back on the May 13th Chapter Meeting

First off there was a lot of detail presented about this coming weekend’s retreat and show. We have the church from 8am to 10pm. Coffee, tea, OJ, and doughnuts will be available prior to 9am. To be clear, the retreat is from 9am – 9pm with the Veterans Tribute Show embedded in the middle. If you are planning to perform on the Crescendo Show on June 21 but are not going to Europe, the retreat is an ideal opportunity for you to work on the music and choreography. There will be 4 rehearsal large segments; 2 in the morning and 2 in the evening.

Retreat master Chuck McKeever will also have waters for us for the day.

As Randall Elliason said last night, bring two dozen cookies and get them to Jack Pitzer on Saturday; and if you are performing on the Tribute Show and don’t live close to the church, please plan to bring your uniform. We have rooms set aside for you to change. We will break for lunch about 12:30 and reconvene at 2 to dress (no makeup) and then great our guests and dignitaries for the 3pm show. There may be news media, so be cool. Again, the show is both a tribute to all veterans and their families, but particularly the 26 WWII veterans we know will be our honored guests. It is also a send-off for our D-Day Celebration trip to Normandy. Please encourage your friends, families, and veterans to attend.

Note to those who ride Metro – plan ahead and get a ride since the church is too far from a station.

This week’s meeting required a lot of set up to check out all the sound equipment for the show, plus there were more risers and some were reversed so the risers were nearly in a straight line. Thanks to Bob Blair for making those changes.  And thanks to Todd Ryktarsyk and others who helped set them up in Durant.

The AC was off!!! So the whole nite was quite a test in dedication to the singers, front row dancers, and guys who did set up.  Basically, no one drank any of the coffee at break.

Assistant director Will Cox did the vocal warm up exercises. Ken Fess with the AV team presented more WWII history.

Then director Joe Cerutti took us right into many of the songs for France and Germany.  Before break we did the last session of Make Me Better.

HANDSOME REWARD quartet with Dave Bonnell, Mike Edison, Vince Lynch, Michael Gilmore sang for us this week as they will be competing this weekend in the combined Atlantic/Western Division contests in Harrisburg.


Turns out seven of our guys are competing with their quartets in one of the M-AD four division contests this spring.  At the Southern Division in Roanoke June 30-31: YOUTH RECLAMATION PROJECT with Mike Wallen, Roger Tarpey, Hardman Jones, Vic Owen Jr.;

THE MONORAIL FOUR with Kellen Hertz, Phil Ferguson, Bobby Seay VI, Andrew Havens; and FORCAST with Mike Fitch, Ian Galvin, Travis Murray, Dan Cook. At the Northern Division in Scranton, the mic testers will be LAST MEN STANDING  with  TJ Bartringer, Drew Feyer, Ed Bell III, Mike Kelly.


Operations vp Bob Blair conducted the weekly chapter meeting and found a familiar face to wear the Ooops I Forgot My Name Badge – Bob Wachter!


President Terry Reynolds reminded everyone to get their new tie from Tom Kern.  And Terry suggested that having 100 guys on the risers in the sweltering heat is another reason why It Is Great To Be A Harmonizer!


Reed Livergood announced again his need for 5 volunteers to host the three guest quartets coming to be on the Crecendo show.  This is a great way for new members to learn more about the BHS and to meet some great singers. We will want to make them welcome to the DC area and to our show and to the Harmonizer family.


Robyn McQueen was selling Crescendo tickets this week.


Chapter secretary Chris Buechler presented a Harmo name badge to new member Kenne Toula. Chris presented membership renewal cards to Kellen Hertz for 6 years; Noah Van Gilder for 7 years; Steve Murane for 12 years; Chris Buechler for 29 years; Rick Wagner for 33 years; Austin Cotton for 39 years; Alan Kousen for 47 years and Dick Hall for 50 years.  The chorus rose to applaud Dick’s milestone!


Membership vp Jeremy Richardson invited everyone to the afterglow for more fellowship – each week at Laporta's, 1600 Duke Street.  He invited all of our guests and applicants up front and Rich Hewitt made the introductions.


After break, some tag singing and attempts by all to cool off outside, it was back to work on the risers on our music.  Joe continually encouraged us to perform, as he felt the rehearsals are over.


To wrap up the evening, president Terry introduced the chapter to work by the current board to look outside the mold or outside our chapter on ways to grow, increase income, and expand our performance efforts in the area. No definite plans have been launched, but the board wanted us all to know what is going on.

The music leadership team has encouraged any singers who are not going to France but might want to sing in the June 21st show with the Ambassadors of Harmony to give it a try.  To help you prepare, every song on the Crescendo Show will be rehearsed this coming Saturday, May 17 during the Normandy Retreat and Veterans Tribute Show (9am – 9pm) at the First Baptist Church in Alexandria. All Crescendo Show performers are welcome to participate in the Retreat whether you are going to Europe or not. Beyond that, there are just 3 Tuesday rehearsals … May 20, May 27, and June 17 (note: there will not be rehearsals on June 3 and June 10 while we are in Europe).

As a teaser, this coming Saturday during the Retreat we will introduce the new ballad to be performed as part of our package at the 2014 M-AD fall contest.



In other news, our member Sean Devine and a member of the Harmony Foundation staff residing near Hershey, PA, has submitted his resignation.  He plans to remain in PA and work in the executive training and development field.  He was on the Foundation staff since 2008.


Sad news on Facebook this week that DA CAPO will scratch and not sing at the International in Vegas.  Best wishes to bass Wayne Adams in combating throat issues.


Congrats to Ellen Dellert, treasurer of FRIENDS IN HARMONY, who earned a certificate in Human Resources  from Marymount University very recently.


Have you heard about Harmony College EAST and Youth Harmony Camp at Salisbury University ( in Salisbury, Maryland on June 12-15? This is an amazing experience with over 500 barbershoppers and youth singers from across the Mid-Atlantic region and it’s just a beautiful 2.5 hour drive to the Eastern Shore. Maybe you have already signed up. Either way, consider this: the Harmonizers are offering $100 scholarships through our Jack Shields Memorial Fund to help subsidize your weekend. This fund is earmarked for our younger members. Please speak with Steve White immediately if you are interested.


Rick Wagner was at the meeting again and getting around with his crutches. TJ Jones was back too.

To wrap up the nite, lots of equipment needed to be loaded onto the Harmo truck for the weekend.

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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