Friday, November 6, 2015

Looking Back on the 2015 Fall District Contest in Ocean City Oct 23-24

This year’s fall contest weekend was back in Ocean City MD. The Harmonizers were well prepared and won their 26th M-AD chorus championship with a great 90.9 score.

We had 97 men on the risers and we sang “Someone Like You” arranged by Steve Tramack and “Me Ol’ Bamboo” arranged by Clay Hine. The music team had prepared us well and we had all worked hard to achieve these high marks – Joe Cerutti, director; Tony Colosimo, associate director; Carlos Barillo, choreographer; Chuck McKeever, riser coach; and Steve White, music and performance vp. Plus there are the assistant directors, visual team members, and section leaders.

We also had four Alexandria quartets in the semi finals on Friday nite:  FORECAST with Mike Fitch, Tyler Rackley, Travis Murray, Dan Cook ranked 4th; HERSHEY TRANSIT COMPANY with Bill Keet, Pookie Dingle, Frank Resek, Steven Matuszewski ranked 8th; YOUTH RECLAMATION PROJECT with Mike Wallen, Roger Tarpey, Hardman Jones, Vic Owen ranked 9th; and BRAVADO with Doug White, Kevin McKenzie, Chris Odell, Todd Ryktarsyk ranked 17th. And on Saturday night at the Show of Champions, LAST MEN STANDING with TJ Barranger. Drew Feyrer, Ed Bell, Mike Kelly sang their swan song as the outgoing M-AD Champion.

This year’s quartet champ features former Harmonizer, Scott Disney, in ROUTE 1.

Also joining in the crowning of the new M-AD quartet champion will be the M-AD Association of Quartet Champions (MADAQC) chorus with many Harmonizers representing the 19 quartet champs from our chapter (see page 35 of the chapter directory).


The Harmonizers appeared on the Saturday nite Jamboree as new district champs and presented songs from our American Icon CD - “America” and “Lullaby.”  We actually wore the contest attire for the show. Joe spoke to the audience about our pride to represent the district at International.  He saluted the other top choruses who will be joining us.  And he spoke of former director John Hohl and announced that we wished to dedicate “Lullaby” to John.

Sales for the CDs went great at our booth in the lobby all weekend. Several guys chipped in and helped sell. The ad on the jumbotron was good too.  And we had a great ad in the printed program about our 2015 holiday show.  

A special surprise on Saturday during the chorus contest was the induction of two more Harmonizers into the M-AD Hall of Honor – Terry Reynolds and Mike Kelly.  They join 20 other chapter members in this group.


The chorus championship entitles us to go to the International contest in Nashville in July 2016. Hell’s Kitchen, NY, Voices of Gotham, ranked 2nd in the chorus contest. The new Hershey, PA, Parkside Harmony, directed by former Harmonizers Jay Butterfield and Sean Devine, ranked 3rd. The Hamilton Square, NJ, The Brothers in Harmony, ranked 4th.

As usual the chapter was well organized for the weekend.  Most men and many families and friends drove up on Friday and everyone seemed to manage the huge traffic delay when an accident closed the Bay Bridge for a few hours.  We had our first gathering on Saturday morning at a Holy Savior Catholic Church, which we have used in other years when in OC.  Our great front row met early there to button down their routines.  The chorus arrived at 9. Then Tony, Carlos and Joe worked hard to get us in the groove.

The chorus contest actually started at 8:30 am but our FRIENDS IN HARMONY came to the church to cheer for us and presented each man on the risers with a memento. Robyn Murane came with us to the ready room with her trusty needle and thread to fix or adjust uniforms as needed.

As is our tradition, Joe asked to see the hands of the guys who are singing with us for their first district contest – YeEd thinks there were five.

Shawn Tallant gets a large thank you from the chapter members for finding us a hotel that would open up on this weekend.  The Harmo truck drivers got everything to OC including the props we used as part of the contest package.

Actually there were a lot of non-singing current members at the convention – several sang with other choruses on Saturday or directed other choruses. As usual we had many guys in leadership and operations positions to run the district and the convention. Dennis Ritchey was emcee for the Friday nite contest session and is the executive vice president for M-AD. Special forces guys for this contest were Mike Geipel, Mike Fasano and Bill Conway.

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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