Friday, April 29, 2016

Looking Back on the April 26th Chapter Meeting

This week we launched our serious work on the contest package and celebrated our successful performances at Strathmore.  (There was no chapter meeting at Durant on April 19th as we rehearsed at Strathmore that evening.)

Associate director Tony Colosimo did the vocal warm ups with choreographer Carlos Barillo. Director Joe Cerutti did a wrap up from Strathmore and invited any members who wanted to comment to come to the mic.  Many guys poured out thoughts and reactions from the heart and it was another moving outcome from the “I Am Harvey Milk” experience.

Then we jumped right into working on the contest package and it included some times for different voice parts to go into sectional rehearsal for parts of the song.

Executive director Terry Reynolds made the announcements (and they were sent to all members): (1) our third Armed Forces Day Show will be Sat May 21st (some earlier announcements that it was on Sunday were wrong) at Ft. Myer chapel. (2) Mark Klostermeyer is taking orders for Strathmore photos – both framed or unframed. (3) As a follow up to our Strathmore appearance and our support of the show there, we have been invited to their annual gala and its after party with a special Harmo rate. (4) Many details listed about contest rehearsals including the switch in on for them to become mandatory at this point, check the calendar for vocal and visual sessions, a form was provided for members to record their personal Valor points, and the reminder about the contest retreat – sign up for roommates and pay your retreat fee to Bruce Minnick.

Chapter president Randall Eliason reported on the recent death of Mike Fultz, gave a wrap up report for Spring2Action, and did a wrap up report about the recent M-AD prelims where some quartets with Harmonizers qualified for the International contest in Nashville in July (DA CAPO and LAST MEN STANDING):

According to many sources, former Harmonizer Mike Fultz died April 14th. Mike was the son-in-law of Linda and (Harmonizer Director Emeritus) Scott Werner. There are several accounts of the causes of his death in social media coverage but most comprehensive is that apparently Mike was hit by a car while biking; and although there were no obvious signs of injury at the time. a day or two or three later he died as a result of bleeding of the brain. Mike and Pam were well known and loved dearly by the Harmonizer family during their time in the area. Mike was a U.S. Park Police officer.

Congratulations on a truly outstanding effort during Spring2ACTion April 20th. (We all certainly extend a huge congrats to chapter president Randall Eliason for his dedication to get us all involved to make this happen.) When we add in all donations (on and off the website) and the matching grant, our total will be more than $23,000!


This is a terrific result that will really help our bottom line this year. Thanks to those who sent out the e-mails, shared the Facebook posts, and otherwise helped spread the word -- and those who made their own contribution.


This was our first time participating in Spring2ACTion, and we earned an extra $1500 in prize money for being the first-time organization with the most donors. We also learned some lessons that will help us make next year even bigger and more successful.


Chapter secretary Chris Buechler presented a membership renewal card to Alan Kousen for 49 years.

Membership director Rich Hewitt welcomed several guests, some new applicants and several men returning to the risers to work on the contest package.

For break, we celebrated a belated birthday for Dick Dangel with a great cake.  And peanut butter and jelly sandwiches from Peggy Wagner.

After the break we worked more on the contest package including a session on visual performance efforts for the ballad, and before we left, we did the whole package for filming (check out the videos posted by Chuck McKeever).

In other news, from Mike Everard comes this announcement:  the Mount Vernon VA Chapter, Harmony Heritage Singers, is celebrating its 20th anniversary along with a salute to Bob Wachter with a luncheon on Thursday, June 23rd at 11 am in the Mount Vernon Room of the Officers Club at Fort Belvoir. Reservations no later than June 1st for $35 each to Lou Manfre, 7608 Elmore Lane, Bethesda, MD 20817.  Checks to Harmony Heritage Singers. For more info, contact Everard at

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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