After a good crew reset the risers and all the equipment we need for the rehearsal and meeting , we started at 7 pm with assistant director emeritus, Will Cox, doing the warm up exercise. Our associate director, Tony Colosimo, was in Sweden judging the contest for the Society of Nordic Barbershop Singers (SNOBS).
Prior to the start of things, there was a lead rehearsal with section leader Reed Livergood and a voluntary visual coaching session with Chuck McKeever.
When director Joe Cerutti took over from Will, he asked members to respond to the survey about possibly singing at the Midwinter in Jacksonville in 2020.
Then Joe introduced our coach and friend, David Wright, from St. Louis and the Ambassadors of Harmony. David has often been our coach in preparation for contests, as well as an arranger for our chorus.
David worked with us the whole first half of the meeting on “We Kiss” – one of his arrangements that we sang at the Orlando International contest. He, along with Joe, helped the chorus make huge improvements to an already great number.
Before the chapter meeting portion, Joe invited Mario Sengco to share his recent visit to Harmony Hall (BHS headquarters) in Nashville. Mario is coordinator of the youth ensemble of the Washington Gay Men’s Chorus called “GenOut” and was with them on a musical tour to Nashville. That trip included the visit to Harmony Hall where the young singers were coached by staff members Steve Scott and Donnie Rose. The high school students were thrilled with the great musical experience. Congrats to Mario for his work with these high school singers.
Communications director Steve Murane conducted the meeting. He reminded all that there will be another voluntary extra rehearsal with Joe on April 29th this time at Convergence Lab space. This is the second such session and there were comments about how helpful the first one was.
Executive director Randall Eliason did the promised drawing for the $100 gift card drawing for the guys who submitted prospective lists for Spring2ACTion. Ike Evans won!
President Shawn Tallant recapped all the many men who are on the mend for health reasons. Everyone seems to be improving.
Secretary Chris Buechler presented membership renewal cards to Litic Murali for 5 years, Dean Sherick for 7 years, Mario Sengco for 9 years, Joe Cerutti for 18 years, and Tom Frederick for 26 years. He also reports that the following members have renewed even tho they don’t attend meeting regularly: Don Johnson for 50 years, Dick Newton for 35 years, and Jeff Taylor for 27 years.
Jack Pitzer welcomed guests for tonite: Alexa Bowe, guest of Aaron Simoneau, who had been with us at the Virtue Feed & Grain party; Tracy Mextorf, Ryan’s sister; Howard Wachspress, member of Mt. Vernon Harmony Heritage Singers; Luqman Fulmer, first time guest who is a student at George Mason in music; Tom and Nick Frederick; and Scott Beach, returning guest from Palmyra, VA.
After a break, SILVER ALERT sang for us as part of the announcement that they will be singing at the Mid Atlantic District International Prelims in Allentown, PA, this weekend.
Then it was back to work by the chorus – a quick run of “Anything Goes” so guys could make a recording to submit to their section leaders. Then back to finish “We Kiss” with David, and wrap up the nite with a solid work session on “I’m The Music Man” which David wrote and arranged (originally for the Dallas Vocal Majority Chorus).
Before we closed for the nite, Joe reported that our own Paul Grimes has been named a winner of a Lou Perry Scholarship to Harmony University in Nashville this summer. Paul’s arrangement was for “Let Me Sing and I’m Happy” by Irving Berlin from the 1932 movie “Mammy.”
Joe thanked David again for a great work out for the chorus and suggested the guys could thank David by joining in the fun at Ramparts for an afterglow. It was a good crowd and fun over there.
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