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Harmony Rag Quartet of Nations Newsletter, Region 31 Sweet Adelines Internationa Spring 2009

New Kids on the Quartet Block:

Look out Newcastle, this year is going to be a tough competition! Enter: Farenheit! Hi Region 31, we would like to take this opportunity to introduce another new quartet on the block. We are Farenheit, all members of DaleDiva; formed in March last year and we will be competing at Convention for the first time in May.

Leisha – Lead, walks and sings everywhere, which can get a bit embarrassing, especially in the middle of a department store! She is a huge fan of Shirley Bassey and actually does a great impersonation, so is known as ‘the Bassey’. Amie – Bass, is the quartet joker, obsessed with handbags and does a wicked ‘air guitar’ when the moment and alcohol take her. Ally – Bari, is the old

we’d give you some more interesting facts about us, like… Which three luxury items each of us would take to a desert island? Helen – “My piano, plenty of Cadbury’s chocolate and a selection of good detective stories” • Beth – “iPod (now I’ve finally got one, I’m not letting it go!), a bucket of Factor 50 sun cream and Rupert PenryJones from Spooks (to help me apply the sun cream...)” • Tan – “Nicky, Beth and

Helen - well, we’d be in good company and keep each other entertained! (I’d have to hope that TOTAL sun block was on 1 of their lists (probably Beth’s)!” • Nicky – “Clinique repair wear moisturiser”, an endless supply of “boy meets girl they fall in love, something awful happens, they part, fate brings them back together” novels (you know the kind I mean!) and a pitch pipe – well some one has to bring one!!!!” And what we are all scared of… Helen – spiders • Tan – flying • Beth – spiders and

By Amie, Ally, Leisha and Pippa

Finesse By Helen, Beth, Nicky and Tan Hi Region 31! We are Finesse and we are so excited to be part of such a vibrant association. We are really looking forward to joining you all at the Sage in May, catching up with old friends and making new ones. Rather than tell you how many children/dogs/ cats/ medals/ years of barbershop/achievements we all have, we thought

timer of the quartet, she has been round the block a few times! We mean quartet singing, obviously! She is the oldest member; a new concept that she is working through, reluctantly! The eagle-eyed amongst you will have spotted that she is also the Director of DaleDiva. Pippa – Tenor, is a new addition, joining the quartet in November 2008. She laughs at anything and everything which always boosts Amie’s joke telling skills. She can, without realising it, remind Ally of the nineteen year age

gap between them, when discussing favourite pop groups and she replies ‘Who?’. Having been coached regularly by Nicky Salt, we are trying hard to make sure that we do ourselves and our wonderful, supportive Chorus proud. Are we nervous? Hey no! ABSOLUTELY PETRIFIED! So, if you don’t have a quartet to shout for, we would love you to cheer for us! Good luck to all the Quartets and Choruses and please come and say hi to us Derbyshire Dales Gals, we would love to meet you.

flying, (hang on, are we seeing some sort of pattern here…?) • Nicky – being with the other 3 either in a tent or on a plane!!!! Thankfully we are travelling to Gateshead in a

car and staying at Jury’s!! See you there! By the way, if you really do want to know about the cats/medals etc check out our website www.

Quartet of Nations Regional Newsletter

Spring is upon us and its time to learn something new! And with all these opportunities available, you’ve no excuse not to get learning! Valerie Taylor Education Coordinator valerie.taylor@privacysolutions. Midsummer BUZZ! Your Education Coordinator, Valerie Taylor, has some exciting news: I hope you are all as excited as I am about welcoming The BUZZ quartet back to region 31 for our education events in July!Some of you will remember The BUZZ from the 2004 European Education Symposium – they really are one of the best quartets we have ever had in Sweet Adelines. If you have never

heard them sing, you are in for a treat! You can find out more about Karen, Debbie, Jeannie and Nancy on their website at This year we are delighted to run our annual education event over two consecutive weekends, one in Birmingham on 17-19 July and one in Edinburgh on 24-26 July. We have chosen locations with good travel links so I hope that this will make it easier for those in far flung places to attend. There are two exciting things happening this

year that I need to tell you about! Young Women in Harmony Chorus First, we will be running a special track for Young Women in Harmony at the Birmingham weekend (17-19 July). All young singers aged 26 and under (whether members of Sweet Adelines or not) are invited to join the YWIH chorus. The chorus will be coached during the weekend by Debbie, the Lead from The BUZZ. Debbie is a high school choral director and regular clinician for youth harmony events. Some of you may have seen the fabulous

performances she has directed at IES, so it is a great opportunity to work with her! The YWIH chorus will rehearse a package of songs and will feature in the show on Saturday night. Symposium Choruses – Directors Wanted! Secondly, we will have 2 symposium choruses at each workshop – they will also feature in the Saturday night show. Everyone who attends will be allocated to one

of the choruses. All we need now are 4 directors! So, if you are the director of a small or medium sized chorus and you are interested in directing one of the symposium choruses, either in Birmingham or Edinburgh, please get in touch with me. If I am inundated with requests I will pull the names out of a hat! Look out for more information about the two workshops on the regional website.

Young Women in Harmony Coordinator – thank you Angela! Valerie Taylor Education Coordinator

On behalf of the region, I would like to say a huge thank you to Angela Sanchez-Rosemurgey from Lace City chorus for all the hard work she has put in over the last few years as YWIH Coordinator. Angela is stepping down from her position as director and organiser of the Showstoppers Chorus

at regional convention and educational events, after several years in her instrumental role in developing our YWIH programme. Thank you Angela! It is farewell to Angela and welcome to Ellie Mills, who I am delighted to say is the new YWIH Coordinator. Ellie is a member of Lace City Chorus and the IVY League youth chorus. Many of you will know her as the talented bass from Luminous, the 2007 Rising Star Champions and the15th place quartet in the International Quartet Contest in Hawaii last November. I am sure Ellie has some exciting plans for the YWIH programme! Message from Ellie I am thrilled to be the YWIH coordinator for Region 31 and be able


to put something back into the program that has given me the support and encouragement to be where I am today. I began my barbershop career aged 11, when I joined the ‘Baby Barbies’ at school, under the direction of Glenn Chaney the Master Director of Lace City Chorus. In 1999, my first quartet ‘In The Spotlight’ travelled to Texas for the first ever Rising Star Contest. At age 14, wearing PJ’s and holding teddy bears we came home with the silver medal and fantastic memories. My next YWIH quartet ‘Pure Innocence’ competed 4 times at regional contest, placing 4th in 2003 and 5th in 2005. After graduating from Durham with a BSc in Geography and Environmental Management, I moved to St. Louis, USA to pursue

a year long internship in a City Planning Department. I joined the St. Louis Harmony Chorus where I was lucky to meet 3 other YWIH members who wanted to sing in a quartet and Luminous was born. We recently placed 15th at the 2008 International Contest in Hawaii and became the first Rising Star Champion Quartet to qualify for the International Contest. Some of the best events we have performed at are

YWIH education events. It’s so much fun working with young singers and seeing how much talent the future of our barbershop organisations have. There are lots of exciting events coming up this year for Region 31 and the IVY League Youth Chorus. Keep an eye on the Region 31 website for more details. We’re hoping to set up a YWIH page very soon. YWIH Events for 2009 Convention – Sunday morning rehearsal with members of the Ivy League and performance in the auditorium to round off the convention weekend. Education – dedicated YWIH track with Debbie Connolly at The Buzz education workshop in Birmingham, 17-19 July; perform in the Saturday night show.

The Westminster Arrangers’ Workshops Chorus are coming to the UK!

Two workshops are to be held this year to help new arrangers improve their skills.

The Westminster Chorus are the all-singing, all-dancing 2007 BHS International Chorus Champions.

Who are the Westminster Chorus? In March, 2002 a group of five young barbershoppers met

original charter, so they took it to the existing members of the old Westminster chorus, who gave them the go ahead. A new experiment had begun. The chorus grew and evolved over the next few years, wowing audiences wherever they went. The hard work and dedication was made apparent when in 2005 they won their District Contest. The next great achievement for the chorus came in the summer of 2006 at the International Contest in Indianapolis, Indiana. Now under the direction of Royce Ferguson, they

chorus, after tying with the Ambassadors of Harmony Chorus, and winning on points difference in the singing category. How can I get involved? In July the Westminster Chorus will be making the long journey across the pond to tour Europe. The dates of their tour go from 6th-16th. They are getting booked up fast but still have from 13th-16th free. For more information if you would like to have them on your show or would like the coaches within the chorus to work with your quartet or

One day intermediate arrangers workshop Venue: Birmingham Conservatoire Date: Sunday 26th April 2009

Who should attend: those who have a good knowledge of music theory and some experience of arranging; those who have attended the introductory course at BABS Harmony College and wish to learn more. If you are interested in the intermediate workshop, please contact Liz Garnett:

Advanced Arranging Seminar with David Wright Venue: The Crowne Plaza Hotel at Manchester Airport. Website at en/hd/mchwt Date: 13-14 June 2009

to discuss forming a new chorus, a chorus composed of other young singers as a means of involving more of their peers in singing barbershop. The idea was to create their own chorus under the chapter’s

delivered a thrilling set and placed 2nd, only seventeen points behind the legendary Vocal Majority Chorus. Next, in 2007 in Denver, Colorado Westminster was crowned the 2007 International Champion

Cost to attendees is £152, which includes everything from after breakfast Saturday until after lunch Sunday - lunch both days, dinner Saturday, breakfast Sunday and bed overnight, plus teas and coffees. Timings will be approximately 10am Saturday until 4pm Sunday. Accommodation is available Friday night at an additional cost of £69, which includes breakfast. chorus please contact Veryan Zimber at as soon as possible. Don’t miss the opportunity to work with this amazing chorus!

Who should attend: those who have produced arrangements which have been published or performed by a quartet or chorus, and who wish to hone their arranging skills. For more information about the Advanced Arranging Seminar, please contact Valerie Taylor: valerie.taylor@ HARMONY RAG | SPRING 2009 | 3

Quartet of Nations Regional Newsletter

Flying Start for DaleDiva’s Chorus

Newly Chartered Chapter – Region 31

Cromford, Derbyshire, DaleDiva is a newly chartered chapter from Cromford, Derbyshire.

Since its birth in 2007, the chorus have had the most fantastic year, from shows to charity events to competitions, they really have achieved a remarkable amount! “It’s been an amazing first year for DaleDiva since we started in November 2007 and our newly chartered status is the perfect icing on the cake!” Writes Liz Tomes. “We’ve been so busy over the past 12 months making numerous appearances across the county including at the prestigious Derby

Arts Festival and annual Derbyshire Day event.” The chorus were also blessed by their invitation to take part in BBC’s ‘Last Choir Standing’ competition, which generated a great deal of interest in the chorus, both in terms of attracting a growing army of loyal fans as well as many new members. “So much so we now have 60 divas and have had to start a waiting list!” “Other events which boosted our profile were our ‘Fame for a Day!’ workshop which was a huge success and singing a carol on the TV news at Christmas. We were also proud to host our ‘In The Pink’

charity concert which raised more than £1,500 for Breast Cancer Care.” The list continues for DaleDiva, who have also sung at a wedding and have many more bookings throughout 2009, including a christening. “Meanwhile, as well as the important business of managing and running the chorus and raising funds to keep us busy, we’re working as hard as ever on perfecting our ever-growing repertoire of music under the inspirational guidance of our musical director Ally Law. Two of our key ambitions this year are to produce our own CD and have the time of our lives with you at our first national competition in May - we look forward to being introduced to you all and making lots of new friends. Something that’s really helped in our preparation was our recent music team retreat. Our 15-strong team travelled down to Bedfordshire on the first weekend of the New Year to strengthen our vocal and

performance skills, improve our technical knowledge and boost confidence to benefit the whole chorus.

Farenheit. We were also thrilled to welcome current BABS silver-medallist male quartet Evolution.

It worked so well we decided immediately to make it an annual educational event – the difference this extra work has already made to the chorus is amazing. It’s really helping us prepare for the Sage of course, but also helped with our first anniversary show staged on February 7. Titled ‘Simply A-cappella’ it featured performances by our chorus and our wonderful quartet

Our matinee and evening shows were sell-outs and feedback from our audiences has been fantastic – a great fundraiser for us too! Although still on a high our sights are now firmly set on Newcastle, doing ourselves proud and enjoying every minute. We sense the next couple of months are going to be very, very busy!!” DaleDiva really is an inspirational chorus.

Director Wanted! Guildford Harmony are on the look out for a new MD. Guildford are a small LABBS chorus of 23 ladies keen to work for a director who can help them improve and make learning fun. They were sad to lose their previous MD, Mike Warner, who moved to Scotland in August. The chorus meet on Thursdays in Guildford. For further information, visit or contact Chairman, Jill Lewis on 01483 502244. 4 | HARMONY RAG | SPRING 2009

Sunshine, Music & Melting Lipstick! 2008 was, without doubt, one of the most exciting years in the 30 year history of Phoenix!

It was certainly a very busy year packed full of recruiting, fundraising, performing, and costumesorting. And then there was the rehearsing! We were extremely privileged to have the help of coaches Dale Syverson and Doug Harrington who really injected spirit and excitement into our buildup to our first International, writes Caroline Donovan, PRO. It seemed such a long way off for such a long time, but then all of a sudden we were having our last Tuesday night rehearsal and saying goodbye to each other with words not generally heard in Potton: “See you in Hawaii!!”

This is the account of Phoenix’s trip of a lifetime by one of their newer members, Christine Gage. “About 15 months ago my life changed; I joined a ladies barbershop chorus! Not just any chorus, the Regional UK & Netherlands champions. The world championships were to be held in Honolulu (yes Hawaii) and all of a sudden I found myself with not just

80+ new friends but the chance of a lifetime, to sing for my country! Luckily my Headteacher agreed “This is like the Olympics for singing” she said. (Thank goodness I didn’t need to be quite so fit!) And so it was that last November the members of PHOENIX A Cappella Showcase Chorus (what a grand name), including me, set off through the Heathrow gloom to sunshine and music thousands of miles away. In my hand-luggage were two fabulous glittery dresses, false eyelashes and gems a plenty but security didn’t seem to worry! On arrival at 11 o’clock at night the temperature was very warm and humid and people were swimming in the Pacific Ocean! Within 3 days the place was awash with 33 choruses from Australia, New Zealand, Sweden, Canada and a variety of places in the USA. Some wore coronets to breakfast; I was to learn that these were the “Queens of Harmony” former champions of the Quartet competition. I could sense that this was serious stuff when all you could hear at 8am was rival groups of singers rehearsing on the beach, in rooms and especially in the designated conference rooms. Our first trip to the auditorium to see where we would be competing was (in the words of my 8 year old class) AWESOME! This was a conference centre that sat 10,000

people with about 8 giant screens so the audience could CLEARLY see the performers on stage, HELP! The day of competition dawned, our director seemed calm, my lipstick was melting and tights did not seem the best idea in 80ºC, however, with the dance moves firmly in my head, we stepped out to “wave the flag” and sing as we had never sung before. We had chosen a beautiful ballad “Do you know how much I love you?” to be followed by an up-tune, “Stepping out with my baby”. As we took our places on stage we could see my husband Tim and all our supporters waving a huge Union Jack, I took a deep breath and loved every second. This dream did not end with a crown, the other choruses were AMAZING, the music PHENOMENAL, and the dance routines, WOW! We came 20th, (out of 33) but no-one seemed down hearted, all you could say was “what

an experience!” and so many “girls” from many other choruses chatted with us, welcomed us, complimented us on our costumes and songs. It really was a great time. Now we are back to the drawing board, rehearsing new songs and auditioning new members with just one aim in mind: To do it all over again!!!!! .“ Christine Gage It took a while to come back to earth but we have now well and truly landed! We’ve just finished a very successful singing programme which attracted nearly 30 brand new potential members, some of whom have already auditioned and joined. We are working hard on our competition package and looking forward to what we know will be a challenging contest in Gateshead. Apart from that we are planning a new CD, hopefully ready for Christmas, which will be available via our soonto-be-launched new look website. Another busy year

coming up! While all of this has been happening, for over a year now, our Director, Lynda has been supporting her husband through some major health problems and he is currently seriously ill again in hospital. Although this has been extremely difficult at times, she has managed to keep her sense of humour throughout and continued to inspire and motivate the chorus to step up to the challenge of their first International. As a chorus we would like to publicly thank her for her dedication and courage and assure her of our continued love and support in the future. We are very grateful to our strong management team who have worked hard alongside Lynda to keep us on track in the meantime. It is at times like these that we really appreciate the family spirit of Phoenix that underpins “Phoenix, the competition machine”. We count that spirit very highly in our list of successes.


Quartet of Nations Regional Newsletter

Flying High: Family & Friends Carla Newson and Barbara Mutsaers It’s not just performance and competition scores that fly high in the Flying High Singers’ Chorus; it’s membership as well.

Director Martjin Hoeksema had always been enthusiastic about directing a large chorus, so in December 2008 each member was set the task of finding at least one friend or family member

to join the chorus for two performances at Christmas, doubling the number from 60 to 120 singers, write Carla Newson and Barbera Mutsaers.

The project, “Flying High: Family & Friends”, started with the new members rehearsing first on their own, and then joining Martjin and the Flying High Singers’ on the risers on 4th and 11th of December. The chorus chose a song already familiar to the chorus, “Friends”, but also “Last Christmas”, which was new to both groups. The new members were very disciplined and had learnt their music well. On Friday the 12th of December the chorus and friends were ready

to show just what can be achieved in just two rehearsals. Flying High Singers and quartet “Klik” sang their Christmas repertoire. A local brass band was also invited to

play which completed the Christmas feeling. The two songs that we sang with “Family & Friends” were wonderful. The audience were stunned at what a fantastic sound 120 barbershoppers can make! Singing in a large chorus was a lot of fun and something which both the new and existing members learnt a lot from. The experience was incredibly worthwhile and very easy to do, as each member only had to find one guest. Many of the vistors enjoyed their experience

so much that they have or are considering joining the chorus, so perhaps Martjin’s dream of directing a large chorus will come true every Thursday evening!

Correction In the last edition of Harmony Rag we were extolling the virtues of the Director Certification Programme. Unfortunately, a typo slipped past our eagle eyed proof readers and Fran Pocock's email address got scrambled. Sorry Fran. For further details of the Director Certification Programme, please contact the Region 31 DCP Co-ordinator, currently Fran Pocock at, or any member of the RMT. 6 | HARMONY RAG | SPRING 2009

Raising Money for Risers

But while it is easy to think of a 101 ways to spend that money, getting it

Whilst the show was a huge success, the chorus still hadn’t raised quite enough for their new risers, so it was time to think a little beyond barbershop! The chorus launched a Murder Mystery Evening entitled ‘A License to Murder’. Six chorus members and three willing (after a touch of arm twisting) partners took the parts of Greengfinger,

together isn’t always so easy. Unless you’re from County Connection! County Connection’s first venture was a joint show. In September, the

Dr No, Honor Majesties, Felt Odd, Diane Otherday, Miss Funnymunny, Honey Pott, Nev R Saynevraggen and Liv Lettdie and invited audience members,

chorus joined forces with world renowned Men’s Chorus, Cambridge Chord Company, to entertain a full audience of 200 people at the Fulbourn Centre, just outside of Cambridge. “An Evening of Song and Laughter” featured not only the two choruses but also ‘Footlights’ quartet and octet, ‘Pieces of Eight’. The acts all enjoyed the fantastic emceeing of Mr. Tom Box.

suitably attired in DJs and evening dresses, to unravel the mystery of the murder of Cdr James Blond. It was a head-scratching evening but a greatly enjoyed one. With the new risers on order, County Connection made one last push to raise the last few pounds. The chorus organised an Antiques Fair in February which was very successful. What a creative way to raise chorus funds!

Whether it’s new songs, new costumes, new props or as County Connection Harmony found, new risers, there’s always something that a boost to chorus funds could appreciate!

Coastline Harmony welcomes… Following on from the great success of our free singing lessons course held last autumn, Coastline Harmony is delighted to welcome all their new members.

They are also extremely thrilled to welcome their first Young Women In Harmony member Lucy (Lead) who joins us after passing her audition at the age of 10. The picture shows Jackie, our President, welcoming

Lucy into the chorus by presenting her with her music folder, certificate, badge and music. Welcome also to our other new members –

Record Breakers? Forth Valley Chorus has always enjoyed the sisterhood of the Sweet Adelines Organisation. The chorus in fact have two sets of two sisters, one set of two sisters-in-law, and up until recently a set of three sisters. However, low and behold a fourth member of the Burns family has recently auditioned to make a set of four sisters. Sisters are certainly doing it for themselves in Forth Valley, and we wondered if they are indeed record breakers, or if this can be topped? If your chorus can top this, let us know! Email

Cathy, Wendy and Sheila our Leads MaryAnne, Jo and Viv our Baritones Barbara and Milla our Basses In addition we now have three more ladies who have recently passed their auditions Louise (Lead), Pat and Julie (Tenors!).” Coastline are now eagerly looking forward to our coaching sessions with Lorraine Rochefort in March and performing in May with all their new singers.

Update on our International Stars! International Faculty Alyson Chaney (Lace City Chorus) and Anne Cargill (Aberdeen Chorus) have advanced to the status of Approved Faculty in the International Faculty Programme. Both were recommended for advancement based on their continued educational activity and the positive evaluations they received from international and regional faculty members.

The next stage is for them to become Certified International Faculty. International Judging Programme Valerie Taylor (Surrey Harmony Chorus) has advanced to the status of Approved Candidate Judge, Sound category, in the International Judging Programme. Valerie will be attending the ACJ workshop in Dallas in March, where she will receive specialist

training from Sharon Babb and other judging luminaries, and she will also attend the “Side by Side” director/ judge training in Detroit in July. Valerie is continuing to gain trial scoring experience and ultimately will trial score at an international convention before she can progress to Certified Judge status. We wish Alyson, Anne and Valerie success on their international journeys!

Apple County Chorus - Anniversary Poem - 19th February 2009 Five and twenty years ago in 1984 Some Taunton ladies heard a sound they’d never heard before. Four voices and a pitch pipe - lovely chords that ring The golden sound of Barbershop to set your skin a- ting-a-ling. I was one of those voices - I sang with Whisperwood We brought harmony to Taunton and it was really good. The ladies all enjoyed it - they said ‘lets have a go!’ The group was born in February all those years ago. We called it Apple County - it set the town alight, when The place rang out with harmonies every Thursday night Many different women have come along to sing Some have stayed for ages - for others - not their thing. We joined an association - known as LABBS by nameBut after a few years ‘twas clear our aims were not the same. We decided to expand our bounds - throw caution to the wind Looked to the Worldwide regions, and Sweet Adelines let us in!! Now we can sing with women from America and beyond, Australia to Sweden united through a song We sing all types of music - songs of mother, heart and home Some we like and some we hate and some that make us groan.

For me, the greatest pleasure is watching someone smile With a song that tugged a heartstring - just for a little while. This makes all the effort of learning notes worthwhileSound placement and that breath control - and don’t forget the smile! The costumes and the makeup ‘what colour nails and lips?’ ‘Must we wear false eye lashes ?’ come on girl - get a grip! The biggest consternation - the cause of all the blues Not songs or notes or harmony - but yellow shirts and shoes! This Chorus is so friendly - a lovely place to be It’s Apple County to the core and that appeals to me From the founding Chorus there remains now just a pair One of them of course is me - and our Director - Anya- over there And as a founding member is it only fair you see That Apple County Chorus shares its birthday night with me!!! By Heather Addicott HARMONY RAG | SPRING 2009 | 7

Quartet of Nations Regional Newsletter

Music Q&A


T he thing I always have trouble with is working out what note to start songs on. I’ve never been taught this so when the pitch pipe goes I really don’t know how I’m supposed to find my note! It’s fine with songs that I know well, but with the newer ones it’s difficult. F inding your note at the start of a song without any help from your director can be tricky! It requires some knowledge of the key the song is in and where you are in relation to the key note. For example, if a song is written in E flat, the pitch that is blown will be an E flat. To find your start note from there, you need to figure out which note in the scale you are singing. The scale for Ei would be Ei, F, G, Ai, Bi, C, D, Ei.

Most of us know the song “That’s What Friends Are For”, which is in E flat.

The first thing is to know it’s in E flat! You need to look at the key signature, which is the collection of sharps (g) or flats (i) which appear on the left hand side of the music. Three i signs tells you it’s in E flat (see below). Then you need to know which note you start on. Each set of 5 lines is called a stave. If you sing the tenor part, you are on a G (second line up on the top stave), so you would be singing three notes up from the note that is blown a typical tenor tune up note on the third note in the scale. If you are a lead you are on a D (just under the bottom line), so you need to sing one note (a half step or semi-tone) down from the Ei. You will see that you move immediately up to the Ei, which is the key note. If you sing bass, you are on an Eb (the note is written on a little line, called a ledger line, underneath the bottom stave), so you are singing the key note, an octave lower from the note that is blown. If you sing bari, you are on a Bi (second line up on the bottom stave), which is 5 notes up from the key note - a typical bari tune up note on the fifth note of the scale. Music is a language just like French or Spanish, and we all need to know enough about our language to get the most out of making music. Learning to read the key of a song and understanding which note is which will make your barbershop experience even more rewarding!


Number of flats – i 0

Key C

Number of sharps – g 0

Key C













2 3 4 5 8 | HARMONY RAG | SPRING 2009

Bi Ei



Surrey Harmony wows audience for a night of Fine Women and Song! Hunky Dory got sultry with “Summertime” while Encore! flashed their “Flirty Eyes”. Surrey Harmony rounded off the evening with a selection of Carols and Christmas Classics that had the audience feeling toasty and singing along. Santa Claus even managed to take time

Surrey Harmony showed once again why they are one of the UK’s top choruses with a dazzling display of “Fine Women and Song” at the Harlequin Theatre on Saturday 29th November, writes Julia Abbott.

The show started with a musical parade through the lives of women over the last 100 years, starting with the

out of his busy schedule to pop in and hear a plea from Hunky Dory. They’ve been very good girls, Santa Baby... The vibrant vocals of Surrey Harmony were complimented by performances from pianist, Graham Rix and rhythmic percussion from “World of Rhythm”.

suffragette movement, to the ‘20’s flappers and finally to the modern day, working girl. The second set saw a revival of pop hits from Abba and Queen as well as some classic Barbershop numbers. The audience were also treated to performances from Surrey Harmony’s very own Quartets.

CONVENTION 2009 Cheltenham Racecourse

30 October – 01 November Special guests – SAI Quartet Champions 2008 – Four Bettys Sing with the Champs - Sing-a-tag - Scratch choruses - Community singing in the auditorium - Afterglows Three shows with top medal-winners, QCs and BABS Champions Photo and DVD sales - LABBS shops - Marketplace - Convention Express - Crèche High-quality restaurants, catering outlets, coffee and snack bars available during the weekend Changing room facilities will be available after the competitions so you won’t need to go back to your hotels to change Friday night is ‘In the pink’ for Breast Cancer Care Saturday night is Halloween Dress appropriately! Registration forms will be available on the website Large free car park, caravan and camping site next to the Racecourse Cheltenham hotel booking form available on the website – Buses and taxi service to and from the town centre HARMONY RAG | SPRING 2009 | 9

Quartet of Nations Regional Newsletter

Celebrations for the Plymouth Mayflower Chorus Celebrating the past… The Plymouth Mayflowers celebrated

Edinburgh to form a huge collage around the room, so there were plenty of memories to reminisce. Joanne Channon, retiring Musical Director, followed speaking of the successes the Chorus has enjoyed in recent years and said, “It is a privilege and a joy to direct this Chorus.

their 30-year anniversary with a Sing and Salsa night for the chorus and its past members. Joan Wilcox, founder director of the chorus was the first to speak, giving a brief history of the chorus’s humble beginnings and was pleased to see that two founder members, Iris and Beryl, still sing with us today. Photographs came from as far away as

Whatever you put into it is rewarded many times over and to feel the love and support of these fun-loving women is a humbling experience.” The chorus had learned “Thank You for the Music” with new words and had sent out over forty CDs and music to past members so that they could all sing together on the night. “We filled the ballroom with a great deal

A new director, a 30-year anniversary and eight new members – it’s onwards and upwards for the Plymouth Mayflower Chorus!

of love and an amazing sound. Roll on the next thirty years!” said chorus member Jane. Celebrating the future… Joanne Channon has directed the Mayflowers for the past 10 years and has now stepped back into the chorus to be an assistant director and sing again. She has a new challenge now, learning the repertoire in baritone! The chorus thank Jo for all her hard work and enthusiasm throughout those years. Regional quartet coordinator and bass from “Carousel”, Sarah Gill has taken up the reins. With the support of Joanne and the Chorus we hope she directs us for many years to come. The chorus will not be competing at Convention this year, as they have enough planned to keep their new director busy! They plan a recruiting campaign with new member nights on the last rehearsal of every month and a six-week course of singing lessons in September and again next spring. Hopefully you will see a larger, stronger chorus in 2010, ready to take up the challenges needed to succeed in the midsize chorus category.

Celebrating now! Chris Angle is also celebrating, along with seven other new Mayflowers, who have entered the chorus through a singing course. “Those of us who decided to join the Plymouth Mayflower Chorus for a six-week vocal coaching course have had nothing but face ache! We discovered muscles in our faces and tongues that we never knew existed!  Who would have thought that we would also end up learning a new language, with words like “anchors”, “resonating”, and “diphthongs” becoming part of our day-to-day

so fit to sing.” After the six-week course, the course guests were invited to sing on a show with the Mayflowers chorus. “All too soon concert day arrived, and we all turned up full of trepidation and anticipation. We were not “centre stage” until near the end and so had the pleasure of sitting through a fabulous concert, and watched the experts at work.  It certainly gave us all something to aspire to!  When our turn came we slipped into our places and did what we had worked hard to do for the last six weeks, and sang our hearts

vocabulary? Our coach Sarah certainly put us through our paces each week and many of us didn’t realise you need to be quite

out.” Congratulations to the Plymouth Mayflowers Chorus, on all their successes this year!

‘A Potted Pantomime In Perfect Pitch!’ International chorus sets always find great ways of linking their songs together. Closer to home Linda Grierson tells the story of Hillfoot Harmony’s fun and exciting pantomime, which brought not just a couple, but seventeen of their favourite chorus songs together, into what became a fantastic show. “It was called ‘Cinderella 10 | HARMONY RAG | SPRING 2009

Dollarfella’ and it was the first time that our chorus had hosted our own ‘show’, although we had performed on many occasions as invited guests.” So it was unknown ground for Hillfoot Harmony, who had to book an extra night and their venue and quickly print more tickets when their first night sold out. Luckily the second was a

sell-out too, and despite some snowy weather, Hillfoot performed to a full house on both evenings. “The great thing about a barbershop chorus is all the talent which inevitably lies within its members, just waiting for an opportunity like this to bring it to the fore. The script writers cleverly weaved a story around some 17 of our

favourite songs; the choreography team patiently reminded us which of our two left feet (or ‘other’ right hands!) to use in choreography; the costume committee provided the key actors with fantastic costumes and the chorus with new accessories. The section leaders corrected a few ‘borrowed’ notes and then uu there was the publicity

uu team, the ticket sellers and all the friends and family who were roped in and also given jobs, such

the most fantastic time. It might be hard work, but we’d recommend it to anyone. Oh yes we

Convention Expenses Summary 2008 Income

as pantomime fairies and waitresses, who were needed to serve mulled wine. A few husbands and partners agreed to be dragged away from the warmth of their firesides (and perhaps the prospect of a night to themselves!) to do other important tasks, which in turn freed us up on the night to concentrate on our warm-up, costumes and make-up.” “One of the great things about pantomime is that it doesn’t have to be perfect, so it doesn’t matter if anything slips (whether that’s actors, costumes or accents); not that it did of course! We know the audience had great fun, and probably one of the best Christmas gifts we

would…!” “Hillfoot Harmony is still a comparatively new chorus and some of you may have already met us in Birmingham in 2007, when we attended out first Sweet Adelines convention; we really enjoyed our time there, learned a huge amount, and were delighted to receive lots of encouragement and support from other, more experienced, choruses. Last year however we stayed at home as, following a successful recruitment drive, we had lots of new members joining us and our director, Catherine Macdonald, and her team have been working really hard over the last 18 months to

could give, as a chorus, was an evening of hilarity and joy on a cold winter’s night, in the middle of a busy and stressful time of year. Best of all though, is that we ourselves had

develop our chorus, and we now have a total of 30 members.” Look out for Hillfoot Harmony at future events, you never know when they might be “behind you!”




Birmingham Symphony Hall


Box Office


Judges Expenses




RMT Expenses




Headquarters Hotel


Winners of Contest


Raffle Prizes





Quartet of Nations Regional Newsletter

Paying Our International Dues By Betty Clipman, Member of the International Board of Directors

Ever wondered what happens to the money we pay each month to Sweet Adelines International? Betty Clipman from the International Board explains.

Greetings to all of the members of Region #31 from the International Board of Directors of Sweet Adelines International. My name is Betty Clipman and I am a member of the International Board of Directors.  I have been given the privilege of being the International Board Liaison to your Region.  I have been able to spend time in your region over the years as a faculty member and a judge.  However, my original connection to you began in 1984 when I was appointed the Counselor to the British/Netherlands Area of Sweet Adelines, Inc.  On my first visit to your area, there were 2 chartered chapters and one perspective chapter in England and Scotland and one chartered chorus in the Netherlands.  “You’ve come a long way, baby!”  Because of my early connections to you, I have watched your progress closely over the years and had my own personal celebration when you had 3 choruses score over 600 points in your 2008 regional competition.  The musical progress that you’ve made in your region is a reflection of your dedication as members and a reflection of your utilization of the educational opportunities provided by our organization.  The progress that you’ve made administratively is also obvious.  Your Regional

Management Team is filled with talent and the members of your RMT are creative and serve tirelessly. When I wrote to your Communications Coordinator, Ally Page, to give her an update on the International Board Meeting in Hawaii, we discussed every member’s connection to the International organization and how that connection benefits the members.  The purpose of Sweet Adelines is educational.  At each International Board

harmony through education and performance.” In 1957, the United States Internal Revenue Service granted Sweet Adelines International tax exempt status as a 50l(c)(3) educational organization.  Since then, Sweet Adelines International has been recognized as an organization that provides the most comprehensive educational programs available in the barbershop community.  A major university, the University of Arkansas, offers continuing education credits to

of the organization and works directly with the international staff to monitor and administer the organization’s programs. Twenty-six (26) staff members provide support to the planning, administration, and delivery of these events and programs, either by directly working with committees and board members or providing the infrastructure support, which includes managing the business operations, i.e., accounting functions, policy development,

Figure 1

meeting the educational value of our organization is evaluated and improved where necessary and possible. Donna Kerley, our Director of Finance and Administration in Tulsa, prepares information for the Board’s review.  The following are excerpts from Donna’s research. Allocation of Member Dues The Sweet Adelines International mission statement is...”a worldwide organization of women singers committed to advancing the musical art form of barbershop


members who attend Sweet Adelines International educational classes and workshops. International Governance, Staffing, and Infrastructure All financial resources including membership dues are utilized to carry out the mission statement, which includes development, administration, and delivery of educational programs, products, and services to the entire membership. The international board of directors functions as the governing and decision-making body

membership data base management, headquarters building maintenance, and mailing functions. The international staff administers the programs and activities of the organization from Sweet Adelines International headquarters in Tulsa, Oklahoma, in a building owned by the organization and free of debt. Costs and Dues Dollars Membership dues provide approximately 50% of all gross revenue needed to fund organizational and administrative expenses,

capital expenses, and reserves for future shortfalls in revenue or unexpected expenses. The remaining costs are funded from other revenue sources including convention and seminar registrations, exhibit booth fees, interest income, The Pitch Pipe advertising, sales, certification program fees, etc. For the fiscal year ending April 30, 2008, the average cost per member to provide these services was $185.  Membership dues (averaged) provided approximately $79 of this amount.  The remaining $106  came from nondues sources.  It costs significantly more to provide services and funding to overseas members.  For example, mailing costs are approximately 100% to 200% more for overseas members and funded travel is 25% to 30% more.  To illustrate how dues dollars are spent, the per member costs are averaged for all members, regardless of geographic location. Net Costs Funded From Dues To determine how membership dues are used all non-dues revenue was applied to the corresponding cost categories identified in the attached chart.  For example, international convention registrations were applied to convention/competition costs, IES registrations to IES costs, etc. Staff salaries were allocated to specific activities or projects.  The remaining staff costs are allocated to administrative and operational  functions of international headquarters. Non-dues revenue, not specifically relating to a cost category, was applied to member services

Education/Member Services 35% International Education Symposium Rising Star/Harmony Classic Education Direction Committee Professional music affiliations (MENC ADA, etc.) Judge Training/Certification Program Director Certification Program International Music Arrangers Program Faculty Certification Program Regional education/administration: Regional leader training/materials • Internationally funded visits to chapters • In-region training • Faculty visits • Counseling visits to chapters • Satellite Areas Membership assistance: • Member/chapter/regional data base maintenance • Quartet registration • Quartet handbook • Prospective chapter assistance • Membership promotion/retention • Member/chapter inquiries • Copyright clearance • ASCAP/BMI licenses for chapters • International sales department • Showcase (net proceeds donated to YWIH and YSF) • YWIH music educator packets • YWIH chapter/regional displays • YWIH festivals • Young Singers Foundation charitable donation Competition/Convention 9% Regional competitions *International competition/convention Exhibits *in years with low attendance, costs exceed registration revenue. Communications/Public Relations 18% Organizational promotion The Pitch Pipe Sing e-Zine Newsletters Chapter mailings: • International Connection • Chapter Guide • Chapter Directory Policy book/revisions Web site information and services for members Representation at other barbershop organizations’ conventions Board Administration 6% Board meetings Strategic planning Policy development Headquarters Administration 32% Executive management Accounting functions Mail processing/distribution Building/equipment maintenance General office supplies Printing/copying Telephone Human resource administration/benefits Panel 2

functions. Figure 1 is a graphic illustration of the percentage of members’ dues payments used to fund activities by category. Panel 2 is a listing of activities and programs included in each category. Headquarters Administration A question often asked, “what is included in headquarters administration expenses?” As previously explained, staff salaries are either allocated directly to an event, project, or activity or to the daily administration of the departments responsible for the events and activities, e.g. Education, Member Services, Communications/ Public Relations, and International Convention/ Competition and Regional Competitions.  The remaining administrative expenses include executive management and staff salaries to manage the accounting functions,

human resource/ benefits management ,mailing functions, and computer system. Utilities, telephone, office supplies, building and equipment maintenance costs are also included in headquarters administrative expenses. Cash Reserves (funded from retained earnings) Establishing and maintaining reserves is an integral part of sound financial planning. The international board of directors determined that a minimum of 50% of the annual operating revenue needs should be maintained to provide funding when revenue is less than budgeted and expenses are more.  Reserves also provide funding for capital needs.  Cash reserves in excess of 50% of the annual operating revenue needs are designated for specific purposes; 60% of the excess for technology and 40% for building and capital

needs. The expanded use of technology will provide more options for providing education, services, and products to all Sweet Adelines International members, particularly our overseas members. Intangible Benefits Some benefits cannot be measured by dollars. Most members join to sing but soon realize they also have opportunities for  personal growth, leadership development, community involvement, and most important, a camaraderie with others....a sense of belonging.  New friendships are formed that flourish throughout a lifetime. I hope that this information is helpful to all of you in understanding the benefits of your membership in Sweet Adelines International.  The International Board of Directors values and appreciates all of you as members.   I hope to be in touch with you again in the future.  Have a great regional convention.

France Dordogne House, sleeping 8, to let in Dordogne area. Has been visited by members. Located near Rocamadour, Gouffre de Padirac, Sarlat and other attractions. Pool, garden. £499 / week. Details, availability at Contact:; 01323 733786. HARMONY RAG | SPRING 2009 | 13

Quartet of Nations Regional Newsletter

Regional Faculty The Regional Faculty is our own group of trained coaches and educators. They can help in a variety of ways including chorus and quartet coaching, as well as management and administrative advice. Please feel free to contact them to see what they can do for you. Alternatively if you are unsure who to contact, your Education Coordinator, Valerie Taylor, can advise you on who would be best for you. Fees and expenses should be agreed with faculty members in advance. Anne Cargill Aberdeen Chorus Aberdeen – 01224 704627

Dorothy Main Aberdeen Chorus Aberdeen - 01224 782124

Alyson Chaney Lace City Chorus Nottingham – 01636 814377

Rebecca Middleton Coastline Harmony Chorus Fareham – 01329 2354491

Glenn Chaney Lace City Chorus Nottingham – 07960 112732

Mike Taylor Spinnaker Chorus Southampton – 01489 600134

Elaine Hamilton Forth Valley Chorus Edinburgh – 0131 334 2372

Valerie Taylor Surrey Harmony Chorus Croydon – 020 8660 8037

Dates for your Diary Regional Convention Dates 8th – 10th May 2009 Newcastle 7th – 9th May 2010 Newcastle

International Convention Dates 20 - 24 October 2009 Nashville, Tennessee

Barbershop in Harmony Marketing Workshop Saturday 4 April, Birmingham

European Convention 5 - 8 March 2009 Eindhoven, the Netherlands

Got a Show? Let us know the details and we will print it here. Swell those audiences free!

Gwen Topp Aberdeen Chorus Aberdeen – 01224 575366 Michelle Walker Lace City Chorus Nottingham – 0115 965 4524

Regional Management Team 2008 – May 2009 Debbie Pern - Team Coordinator Aberdeen Chorus Tel: 01224 586430 Tracy Bailey - Directors’ Coordinator Champagne Cornwall Chorus Tel: 01726 63937 Eileen Milne - Finance Coordinator Aberdeen Chorus Tel: 01224 742453

Have you got a story for Harmony Rag? DEADLINE for the next issue 29th May 2009 Contact the Editor: Rose Paxman 69a Muskoka Drive, Sheffield S11 7RH Tel: 07768751262 Email:

Valerie Taylor - Education Coordinator Surrey Harmonye Tel: 020 8660 8037 Emma Riley - Events Coordinator Surrey Harmony Tel: 07771 562962 Deborah Lamble - Membership Coordinator Spinnaker Chorus Tel: 01202 487287 Alison Page - Communications Coordinator Prospective Rhapsody UK Chorus Tel: 01733 242937 Marketing Coordinator Position Filled from May 2009


Harmony Rag 2009 Spring Edition  
Harmony Rag 2009 Spring Edition