Thursday, December 17, 2020

Looking Back on the Dec. 8th 2020 Virtual Chapter Meeting

 Looking Back on the Dec. 8th 2020 Virtual Chapter Meeting


It was a cold night but there were warm feelings about the season and the chance to see and chat with our friends from the chapter when we gathered.


Director Joe Cerutti called things to order and welcomed all those who made it onto the call during this holiday season. He had a lot of info to pass on to the chapter:


  • We are happy to announce that section leaders Brian Ammerman, Ryan Mextorf, and Jason Lee and his assistant Jacob Broude have all agreed to continue in their roles.   Thanks so much to them for their continued hard work and dedication to the chorus.


  • You may have heard that Reed Livergood and family are expecting another baby.   Between that and his work commitments, Reed has asked to step down as Lead Section Leader.   Thanks to Reed for the great job he has done for the last two years and two years before that with the Baritones.


  • So that means we are looking for a Lead Section Leader.   If anyone would like to throw their hat in the ring or have questions about the role and its responsibilities, please reach out to Terry Reynolds and/or Joe.


  • The music team met a couple weeks ago and discussed how they wanted to approach learning the coming new music.  
    • They decided that rather than doing “Ready to Rehearse” submissions to listeners for evaluation like we were doing at the beginning of 2020, we’re just going to do audio virtual choirs on each of the songs.   
    • We’ll ask you to submit your recording of each of the songs by a deadline and we’ll ask Joel Golden to build them into a consolidated recording
    • We will take the lesson learned from the last few months and use videos of Joe conducting the song so you know the exact interp to sing. 


  • Joe has already recorded all the conducting videos and the Music Team will start putting the learning tracks to match.    We hope to get “Help from My Friends” out to singers this month and more to follow over the holidays or in January 


  • The annotated version of “Help from My Friends,” including corrections, is now posted on Groupanizer, so please download the new version.


  • For those of you who are motivated to learn music over the holidays, we’ll send out an initial  priority list for the order we plan to work on the songs in 2021.  We’ll get that out to you next week.


  • As we are going to be learning more music, we are going to start spending a little more time on Tuesdays in rehearsal.  We will still hold discussion topics but probably not every week. We will allow some extra time in sectionals and small groups that can be some  “check-in” or social time.    



Joe reminded everyone that there is one more upcoming December meeting on Dec. 15th.  Then on Dec. 22nd we will have a virtual “afterglow” event, instead of a virtual meeting, to celebrate our virtual holiday show which would have been on Dec. 20th.  There will be no meetings on Dec. 29th nor on Jan. 5th.  We will resume meetings on Jan. 12th at 7 pm.


Speaking of the show, Joe reports that it is all set to go for “Christmas – Coast to Coast – A Celebration of Singing and Family.” The show will be streamed by BHS on their YouTube Channel at 6:30 pm Eastern Time, on Dec. 20th.  We are co-presenting the show with Northwest Sound from Bellevue, WA.


Links to see the show have gone out to members.  It can be found here. You can click on the chorus picture upper right corner to get a montage of the performers.  On the day of the show, you can click on the arrow in the picture as your link for the show.


Joe stressed again that the show is FREE. We will be offering support for TAPS (Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors), a non-profit in VA that provides benefits for the families of service members who were killed in the line of duty.  


We did get to see the montage created by Mike Kelly to use as a teaser for promotion and a we watched a preview of a song by MIDTOWN. 


The Holiday Silent Auction is “live” now and you can start bidding on any and all of the 60+ items in the auction.. It will run for two weeks, ending on Dec. 20th after our show. It is not too late for members to submit more items for the auction.  Send info about new contributions to Kritin Kelly at 


The chapter is proud that we have been accepted as one of the 14 performing groups to be part of WETA “Songs of the Season.” They chose our 2019 performance of “Gloria,” arranged by David Wright, to be used in their holiday presentations streamed online between Dec. 15th and the 25th pm on both WETA PBS and on WETA METRO channels.



Tues Dec 15th at 9 pm

Wed Dec 23rd at 4 pm

Fri Dec 25th at 4 pm





Sun Dec 20th at 1 pm

Tues Dec 22nd at 3 pm

Fri Dec 25th at 2 pm


Associate director Tony Colosimo conducted a warm up session starting with stretching and moving so the singers would be ready for the choreo review later in the evening.  


Next, the attendees worked on “Chorus Line Medley.”  Tony sang lead a few times and Jason Lee sang bari a few times so singers could practice singing their part. Joe coached Tony and Jason and made comments about the many things they each did well so chorus singers could benefit from the exercise.


Next,  we went into sectionals and then worked on the choreo for the finale of “Circle of Life” with Tony. He had the members sing some and do the moves some and then do them both at the same time.


The chapter business meeting was coordinated by communications director Matt Doniger.  


AH, Inc. president Bruce Roehm reported that we raised over $6000 on our Giving Tuesday effort.  Some members organized other donors and helped raise the total – Dean Rust and Randall Eliason to name two. Thanks to Bruce for coordinating this extra effort. 


Bill Colosimo invited members to check out the Alexandria Singers Virtual Holiday Pops Concert, Dec. 12th at 2 pm.  Visit  and look for the show’s homepage as “Event.”


Tessa Walker sent a Harmo personals message to the chapter inviting support of a virtual fundraiser for the music program where she teaches.


Joe reported on several guys who are combating Covid – Dave Kohls plus Drew Fuller and his wife. Joe also offered our thoughts for Ken Ives and Clyde Crusenberry with health challenges too. 


It was great to see Chris Buechler on the call this week – he is at home recovering from a kidney transplant and making decent progress.  He had attended a chapter board meeting before the chapter meeting – his last one as secretary of the chapter for 25 years!  Our thanks to Chris and our best wishes as he continues to improve.


Scott Kahler was on the call too from his home in Atlanta.  


Our elective this week was provided by chapter coach, arranger and friend, Steve Tramack.  He presented an educational session on Musicality.  It concentrated on the importance of studying the melody of a song.  The melody is one of five parts of a song – melody, lyrics, rhythm, harmony and parody. But the melody can reveal so much to the performer and listener – movement, tension, signal meaning, and stir emotion.


His presentation was a companion piece to the session Joe did last week about  Developing Musicality.   They were part of a 6-part virtual session at Harmony U last summer with Kevin Keller, David Wright, Marc Hale, and Steve Armstrong.


Next week’s Tuesday meeting will be via Zoom again at 7 pm and our last meeting before the holidays. Watch for email details. 


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 for the great things going on each week during the 72nd year of the Alexandria Harmonizer Chapter. - YeEd)



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