Saturday, November 4, 2017

Looking Back on the Oct. 31st Chapter Meeting
The Harmonizers gathered at the First Baptist Church this week, where we will rehearse for the next three weeks.
The primary focus for the evening was the Holiday Show, December 2nd and 3rd. Director Joe Cerutti thanked all the guys who turned out for the community singing event last Wednesday at the Alfred Street Baptist Church. It was a great event made possible in large measure by Dean Rust and John Oswald Green. Joe read parts of an email from Joyce Garrett, the church's Director of Music and long time Alexandria community supporter. She was so thrilled with the event she wants to make it an annual event.
Terry Reynolds conducted this week’s business meeting, reminding members of important information about upcoming shows. On November 10, we will again be participating in the Veteran's Day salute at the Oakton Middle School. Call time is 8:30 am. Dress is coat and tie or military uniform with patriotic ties encouraged. This is always a fun event and a great opportunity for our 6th row guys to perform. We will be singing the “Armed Forces Medley,” “God Bless America” and the tag to “God Bless the USA” (a quartet will sing the rest).

It's time to sell tickets for the Holiday Show. If you have not done so, FaceBook users should follow Steve Murane's instructions to locate the events on the Harmonizer FB page and indicate you are going, then share the announcement with a personal note. Brian Ammerman is organizing a Paint-the-Town event Saturday, November 4 to help spread word and have some fun. Contact Brain if you can participate.

For the holiday show and other events, we will be wearing our holiday sweatshirts and scarves. Guys were encouraged to make sure they can find them and that they are in good condition. If you do not have them or they need replacement, please report back next week.

 In addition to the Holiday show December 2-3, we will be singing at senior centers during the day on December 8 and 9.

Terry announced that the yahoo groups will be discontinued as a means for chapter communications and replaced with Groupanizer. To prepare for this, guys should log on to Groupanizer and make sure their primary and secondary email addresses are updated.

Liz Birnbaum, president of AH Inc., reported on recent donations of gift cards and other valuable merchandise for the Holiday Show silent auction. Steve Sutton, another AH Inc. board member has donated some valuable, eye catching items. Rob Barnovski received facility passes from the Fairfax County Parks Authority. Johan Westberg secured valuable donations from IKEA and several guys received gift cards, just by asking businesses they patronize. One out of two businesses will make a donation if you ask. Where else can you beat those odds? Liz encouraged everyone to do their part and ask. Liz also announced the need for a laptop or Ipad. If anyone would like to make a tax deductible donation of one of these items, please talk to Liz.

Al Herman, chapter treasurer, told us about a great opportunity for those of us in retirement to help the chapter and reduce taxes at the same time. Look for more information in your mail box. Chris Buechler, still recovering from surgery, presented Jim Kirkland with his eight year membership card.

Membership Director Dave Kohls announced that Chris Leyen and Mario Sengco had passed auditions and introduced guests Brad Jayne, Nick Fredrick, Shelly Reagan, and Carlos Barillo's family members Susanna, Connie and Maria.
After break, we worked on Holiday songs and “God Bless the USA” in preparation for the Veteran's Day program. Carlos taught us slightly revised choreography for “Text Me Merry Christmas.” Joe thanked the guys for the great progress being made on the holiday music and challenged us to be ready to take it to the next level next week.

A good group enjoyed the afterglow at Ramparts.
(Thanks to Don Harrington for taking notes for YeEd.)

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 70th year of the Alexandria Harmonizer Chapter. —YeEd


Friday, November 3, 2017

Looking Back on the Oct. 25th Community Sing
The Harmonizers participated in Chorus Meetup—“Sing for Joy” at the 214-year-old Historic Alfred Street Baptist Church in Old Towne Alexandria.
Members arrived starting at 6 pm, received by greeter/ushers and were in place in the sanctuary, not quite warmed up as director Joe Cerutti had instructed so he turned the reigns to Will Cox. Shortly thereafter a compliment of 54 men were ready to enchant.
The program opened with greetings from Dr. Joyce Garrett, Director of the Music and Arts Worship Ministry, and was emceed by Matthew Stensrud, Chair, Alexandria Commission for the Arts. The performers were Male Chorus of Alfred Street Baptist Church, Directed by Melvin E. Bryant, Jr., with co-director Carl Cragway teaching the aggregation a gospel selection. The Alexandria Singers followed them, under the direction of Bill Colosimo, who also shared a selection to be performed collectively by all assembled.
Next up were the Harmonizers who performed the gospel “Roll Jordan, Roll,”  “I’ll Be Seeing You,” and the latest contest up-tune, “Blow, Gabriel, Blow.”  Next a quartet of section leaders (Brian Ammerman, tenor, Tony Colosimo, lead , Chuck Hunter, baritone and Andrew Havens, bass) taught everyone the David Wright “Friends” tag.
Next up was the Hispanic Choir of Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church which included a compliment of instrumentalist and vocalist. Their collective was a Spanish language of the popular gospel selection, “Lord, We Lift Your Name on High” with those familiar singing the English along with the Spanish.
The evening ended with refreshments served in the church’s fellowship hall. Special thanks to The Alexandria Commission for the Arts, Virginia Commission for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Arts, Saundra Deltac for assisting the church’s kitchen coordinator (Verna Payne)  with the refreshments, and a BIG thank you to Dean Rust for all of his “blood, sweat and tears” coordinating the many particulars.
A wonderful program that highlighted people of diverse musical styles & cultures experiencing the transformative power of music.
(Many thanks to John Oswald Greene for taking notes for YeEd.)
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 70th year of the Alexandria Harmonizer Chapter. —YeEd

Looking Back on the Oct. 24th Chapter Meeting
The chorus members were back at work on Tuesday nite in the music suite at First Baptist with more solid work on our holiday music for the shows and singouts during the coming season.
Associate director Tony Colosimo did the warm ups and used the quartet teaching method to help us learn a new tag for “Caroling Caroling.” Director Joe Cerutti worked on the show songs then and Mike Kelly projected the music for the songs. Before he started, Joe paid special tribute to Dean Rust for the many behind-the-scenes tasks Dean does for the chapter – particularly submitting grants for our chapter. The chorus gave Dean a standing o in appreciation.
Joe also explained the plan for the sing out and fellowship we are co-hosting tomorrow nite at Alfred Street Baptist Church on Wed. Oct. 25th. The event is being co-hosted by the men’s choir and us. It will bring together the Harmonizers, the Alfred Street men’s choir, the Alexandria Singers (directed by Bill Colosimo) and a Spanish choir from Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church. Start time is 7 pm. Joe wants our chorus there at 6 pm. We will wear black camp shirt and jeans outfits. Singing should be finished by 8:30 and then refreshments. Invite guests to this incredible combination of very diverse musical groups in our city.
The sanctuary of the church is at 301 S. Alfred St. Alexandria, Va. Church is on the corner of Duke and S. Alfred St. Entrance to sanctuary is on Alfred Street. Plan ahead, allow extra time. On the street there is both metered and non-metered parking, but it is limited to two hours during the week up to 11:00 PM. Enforcement after dark may be spotty, but… Private lots may be your best choice. They are owned by businesses in the area, but available to the church at no cost after 5:00 PM.
All during the day on Sat. Dec. 9th the chorus will be singing at a number of senior centers around the area – likely smaller groups each singing at different ones. Clyde Crusenberry is organizing this event.
Sandy Stamps was at the meeting to distribute White House Ornaments for members to sell.
Brian Ammerman is producer heading up the holiday shows Sat. Dec. 2 at 8 pm at TC Williams on King Street, and Sun. Dec. 3 at 2 pm also at TC Williams. He spoke about the projected ticket sales campaign to retirement and senior centers. THE TICKETS ARE NOW AVAILABLE ONLINE. He spoke about the need for all members to sell tickets and promote the show. The flyers are available. . President Randall explained that there will be a senior discount of 20 percent and a student discount of 50 percent. He also reminded guys to get gift cards for the silent auction at the show.
The Veterans’ Day sing at Oakton Elementary is on Friday, Nov. 10th.
Note that all the chapter meetings will be at First Baptist for the rest of the year except Tues. nite Nov. 28th. There will be no meeting on Dec. 5th. The Dec. 12th meeting will be the annual pub crawl and sing in Old Towne – all Harmonizers are welcome. And the Dec. 19th meeting will be the traditional Heat Glow Harmo Holiday Party at the home of Jack and Pat Pitzer, 7801 Suffolk Ct., Alexandria, VA 22315.
Randall introduced a member of the DC Chapter who was present to encourage our chapter to attend their annual Harvest of Harmony on Nov. 4th. It will be the last time DA CAPO sings, and Bill Colosimo’s last show as director with the DC Chapter. CAPITAL CITY CLOSE HARMONY CLUB will also be on that show.
Rick Wagner introduced the guests: Brad, Chris, Ryan and Carter. Secretary Chris Buechler was back to chapter meeting and presented a renewal card to Michael Schwartz for 23 years. It was also good to see Michael back, plus Kevin McKenzie and Brian Miller.
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 70th year of the Alexandria Harmonizer Chapter. —YeEd