Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Looking Back on the Oct 15th Fall Show

The chapter’s 2016 fall show was at 2 and 7:30 pm on Saturday, Oct. 15th at Schlesinger Hall on the campus of NoVa Community College in Alexandria. The risers were packed with a larger chorus well prepared to sing this year’s show.

Our guest quartet was DA CAPO – recently named M-AD quartet champs. The sang to kick off the second half of the show and help launch the finale for the show. 

The show theme was REVOLUTION – a musical celebration of the art of change, featuring the revolutionary music of the Beatles, and excerpts from the contemporary oratorio “I Am Harvey Milk.”  Guest soloist for the oratorio portion was Larry Friedman and the accompanist was Allan Weber (a former Harmonizer in 1994-96, earned a gold medal with us in Miami and is a regular music educator to bring students to our chapter’s Youth Harmony Festival from Potomac High School in Dumfries.)  We gave them each a Harmo lapel pin to make them honorary members.

Harmonizer solists in the oratorio portion included Terry Reynolds, Ken Ives, Frank Fedarko, Edris Qarghah, and Noah VanGilder.

The Beatles music included songs from our contest package in Nashville last summer with several traditional crowd pleasers.  Another special guest was Drew Tepe, a popular pianist/entertainer in the Pittsburgh area, who helped involve the audience in singing-a-long. (Yes he is a distant cousin of Greg.)  Drew got the audience and the chorus involved in singing, clapping and getting into the Beatles songs he played and sang, and made it fun for all.  He is also a championship barbershop quartet singer in the Seneca Land District and has sung in a quartet with former Harmonizer Pete Frank.

Harmonizer soloists in the Beatles portion included Kevin McKenzie and Ben Roberts. Our chapter a cappella group directed by Reed Livergood, TBD, sang three Beatles songs as part of the show too.

The music leadership team of director Joe Cerutti, associate director Tony Colosimo, choreographer Carlos Barillo, section leaders and performance team, had worked hard to prepare us for this show, tho we first sang the new Beatles package for other local chapters at the annual Dog Days event in August. Costumes for the show included our black suit with narrow black tie (ala Nashville) for the Beatles songs, and ‘80s theme outfits with lots of color and flashback clothing (coordinated by choreographer Carlos).  These costumes meant the local thrift shops made a lot of sales!!

Thank yous for stage and technical crews for the show including riser crews to haul in and set up our new risers.  Todd Ryktarsyk was general show chairman. Greg Tepe was stage manager. Mike Kelly and Dennis Ritchey did the sound work and some of the emcee work for the show.  Other times guys on stage announced songs.  Tom Jackson was the pitchman. Thanks to Mike Edison and his crew for their Saturday morning work on the riser safety rails.

Two Harmonizers sang their first show with the chapter this weekend – Litic Murali and Rob Barnovsky.  Welcome on board.

Tony and Joe helped us get warmed up for each show and offered reminders for all.  Saturday eve we were ready to go, so Joe taught us David Wright’s favorite tag, “All By Myself Alone.”  It was fun.

Of course there was the usual effort by many guys to clear the stage and reload into our truck after the show.  Thanks again to all who pitched in.

Thanks also to the many friends of the chapter who worked in the lobby to sell things and help guests get into the show.  Keith Jones was on hand all weekend.

This was likely the final performance of the “I Am Harvey Milk” music and so it was an emotional Harmonizer “Breathless Moment” for all singers and our director!

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 68th year of the Alexandria Harmonizer Chapter. —YeEd