Friday, March 15, 2019

Looking Back on the March 12th Chapter Meeting 

The pre-meeting time was busy tonite – setting risers back in place in the performance space at Scottish Rite Temple, a board of directors meeting  in the library, the front row guys working on their routine for uptunes in another room, and a stage presence review for new guys with Chuck McKeever in the main lobby space. As usual Mark Klostermeyer staffed the welcome station for guests in the lobby as well.

To start off the music workout for tonite, associate director Tony Colosimo conducted a vigorous warm up session and then turned the chorus over to director Joe Cerutti.  He announced coach Cy Wood will be with us April 9th, and gave a brief preview of what music would be worked on tonite and then enthusiastically  welcomed our coach and chorus friend, Kevin Keller from the Ambassadors of Harmony in the St. Louis area.  

Kevin gave a plug to the weekly “Looking Back” he also receives as a coach of the chapter and thanked us for keeping him well informed about things in Alexandria. (He shared with YeEd that he figures it a great help for members to know what they missed if they were on travel or were ill.) 

Kevin worked with the chorus on “Anything Goes” which he had arranged for the chorus a few years ago (we sang it at the International contest in Toronto where we earned a third place medal).

Communication director Steve Murane conducted the chapter meeting portion of the nite.  He encouraged guys to prepare for the March 20th show and especially for new guys to talk to Robyn Murane regarding any uniform needs they have for that performance.

Earlier in the evening Joe and Tony worked with the singers on the two songs for the  Together in Harmony show which we will sing with the other singing groups – “Let There Be Music, Let There Be Love” with the Alexandria Singers directed by Bill Colosimo, and “Hallelujah” with Vocal Collective  from New Zealand.

The show starts at 7 pm  altho the chorus reports at 5:15, volunteers 5 pm at George Washington National Memorial in Alexandria. Harmonizers and volunteers wear black camp shirt with black pants. Tickets are just $10.  Help spread the word on this fun show – Dean Sherick has tickets for those who want them to sell directly.

There was more good news about our Youth Harmony Festival set for Friday, April 5th here at SRT.  Education director Sheryl Berlin has preregistered 107 students so far!!  Then Rob Barnovsky reported more operational details about our Festival.  He is recruiting volunteers for registration; food operations such as breaks, lunch and dinner; and ushers to welcome parents and friends to the evening concert when the chorus and youth choruses will sing.

Donations will be collected on Tuesday March 26th and April 2 such as chips and snacks, cookie packets; fruit such as apples, bananas, grapes and oranges; bottled waters; and assorted sodas and juices, OR $5 to use day of the event.  Rob will also need about 6 large coolers – tell him if you can offer one. 

The chapter’s History Committee would like to digitize “Breathless Moments” and wants  to hear from any member who has equipment and time to tackle such a big job.  Contact Jack Pitzer for more details if you can help.

Executive director Randall Eliason reminds the entire chapter – all the active and former members, as well as family members, about Spring 2ACTion which will be April 10th.  He will be informing all of us about how to make donations during the day, and final arrangements for the always-fun time at Virtue Feed & Grain in Old Town that nite when donors and customers help us raise funds.  Members and guests are all welcome.

Randall also shared a letter from a former member who sang with us in our first International contest competition – Phil Krepps. Originally Phil responded to a recent letter from the chapter that went to all Harmonizer alumni. He explaining that for some reason because of travel after that 1978 convention in Cincinnati, he never got his fourth place medal.  So one of our members gave up his bronze medal from that contest, and the chapter sent it to Phil.  He was overjoyed to get it and wrote to say thanks for making the 40-year memory complete!   There was resounding response that “It Is Great to Be a Harmonizer!”

The Harmonizers guys in “Riptide” band welcome anyone to come to the battle of the bands at the Electric Palm in Occoquan, VA, March 31st at 4pm.

President Shawn Tallant reports that some guys have visited with Mick Stamps and the report is he will be headed back to see us soon!

Shawn thanked Joe and the good turn-out of singers who helped with the celebration of life for Ken Ives’ wife Charlene last Friday. 

We all joined Shawn in welcoming our newest member Turner Arndt! 

Shawn also announced that the chapter will not appear at the Southern Division contest convention in Baltimore on the May 31/June 1 weekend.  

Finally he announced another Meritorious Service Award presented to Jason Lee who has provided work in the chorus including assuming bari section leader duties recently.  This was another of the awards that the president makes annually.

Next, quartet members of SILVER ALERT (Rick Savage, Mike Edison, Will Cox, and Steve Murane) spoke to their fellow members and in short, offered to help anyone who is interested in forming a quartet.  The spoke of the fun great experiences of singing in an organized quartet. Several guys met with them at break!! This is a great addition to the chapter plan for 2019.

Chapter secretary Chris Buechler presented new membership materials to Ryan Mextorf and a Man of Note pin to his sponsor, Terry Reynolds; plus membership renewal cards to Frank Shipp for 17 years and to Chuck Powell for 25 years. Chuck also received his 25-year lapel pin from the chapter.  

Jon Frank helped the membership team and introduced this week’s guests – Chris and Laird. 

After break we worked on “Empty Chairs” with Frank Fedarko doing the solo, and then a chunk of time on Jay Giallombardo’s arrangement of “Brotherhood of Man.”

We closed the nite with Kevin and “Keep The Whole World Singing.”

A much larger crowd of guys were at this week’s afterglow around the corner at Ramparts.

In other news, the chapter history committee was pleased to receive Harmo materials from Lynn Andrew’s widow, Pat.  Bob Rhome and Martin Banks retrieved it for our archives.  As is always the case, the committee is happy to accept all materials from members, then they sort it for historical relevance or other uses.  In this case, there was a lot of music which will be shared with chapter librarian Bob Mattes. Lynn was a Harmonizer for 28 years and did much to arrange and manage music for the chapter.  He died in 2013 at age 72.

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