Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Looking Back on Harmony College East and Our Parade Gig in June

Barbershoppers from all over M-AD and beyond gathered at Salisbury University June 18-21 for the annual Harmony College East for a weekend of classes, coaching, good food, shows, and most important – singing! New this year was a dedicated Tag Room, complete with tag sheets.


As you can well imagine, Harmonizers were very much involved all week. Singing in quartets on the Friday and Saturday night shows were Mike Wallen in YOUTH RECLAMATION PROJECT, Mike Kelly in LAST MEN STANDING, Bruce Minnick in  SURPRISE, Rick Taylor in  BSQ, and Pookie Dingle, Mike Pinto and Ken White in MAYHEM.


The Mt. Vernon chapter chorus, Harmony Heritage Singers, also came for a weekend of coaching and appeared on the Saturday night show.  Several Harmonizers appeared with that chorus included Chris Buechler, Drew Fuller, Chuck Harner, JT Price and Bob Wachter.


The Richmond Virginians were also coached and appeared on the Saturday evening show. Mike Wallen was director and Mike Geipel and Jim McConnell who are also singing with the Harmonizers were on stage.


Also at HCE for the weekend were Martin Banks, Bill Colosimo (faculty), Bob Eckman (staff) and Alan Wile (staff). Former Harmonizers and coaches at Salisbury included Gary Plaag (youth camp director), Mike Louque (faculty), Bob Hirsh, and Steve Tramack (faculty). The fun weekend lasted long into the evenings and even an appearance by the tropical storm on Saturday didn't dampen the singers as chords rang in the courtyard well into the morning hours.  (YeEd appreciate the write up from the weekend from Bob Eckman and notes from Alan Wile.)


Also this month 48 singers sang Saturday June 13th for Marriott Corp. in the Capital Pride Parade in DC.  The afternoon temperature was in the 90s and there were huge crowds.  But the crowd loved it when we burst onto the parade route and sang and danced to “Happy”.  Our guest soloist was Mark Allen. Greg Tepe helped coordinate the appearance that day – with two contingents of us spread out on two sides of the street in the crowds!! We were sponsored by Marriott and appeared as part of their #lovetravels campaign.  We met at one of their hotel properties at Rhode Island Ave., reviewed our plan, got ideas from choreographer Carlos Barillo for our appearance,  tested singing the song to a recording and got our t-shirts and sunglasses issued as part of the Marriott campaign. Director Joe and about a dozen guys met us their too after they had done the sound check on P Street. Chorus manager Mark Klostermeyer helped Greg move men into positions on the parade route.


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 67th year of the Alexandria Harmonizer Chapter. —YeEd.


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