Zoom – Over and out!! (30-Jun-2021)


No question – it has been a journey! But we are approaching our destination and we are positively giddy about it! We have been Zoomrehearsing for the past 15 months and we are finally at a stage where we can start planning for in person rehearsing – outdoors!


Our leadership demonstrated compassion and resilience during these unusual times and inspired us to give as much as we felt we could, all the while never ever making us feel like we had to participate. Our own reality makes us unique and there isn’t a one size fits all approach – flexibility, understanding and encouragement has been key and appreciated!


We made good use of our virtual weekly rehearsals! From muted singalongs - to vocal and visual breakout rooms - to coaching under glass by our incredible chorus director, Joe Connolly, we added to our personal tool kit and improved our individual skills. Our new uptune and ballad were split into 4 assignments. A mix of both vocal and video recordings were submitted privately to Joe – for his ears only - and he provided recorded feedback to each of us. He has a gift – he hears the nuances and minutia in every chord and provides incredibly positive feedback that helps us each grow assingers and performers. All told, we submitted 212 audio/visual assignments and Joe turned feedback around within 36 hours or less! His dedication and hard work outside our regular rehearsal nights is exemplary. We are blessed to have him in our world. Lucky to be CSC!!


We learned new songs; we learned an entire visual plan online; we produced two virtual projects; we coached with Tim Waurick twice; we received 30-minute individual private vocal instruction with the amazing Tim – twice; we coached with Erin Howden twice; we received 40-min individual private visual instruction with Erin – once; we had an inspiring Barbershop 101 workshop with Karen Breidert that set us up perfectly to complete our Vision, Mission and Guiding Principles. We expanded our musical and visual teams and saw great success and results in our breakout rooms. It truly takes a village, and we have one of the best!


This week we played! Our Summer Sizzler included Mystery Member reveal (a fun game we have been playing for the past several months where members complete a questionnaire of interesting facts about themselves and the rest of us try to guess who they are!), a joke telling contest – we have a few stand-up comics in our midst,  a presentation acknowledging and recognizing our village, a trip down memory lane to Las Vegas 2006 when we competed on the international stage; a performance that ended with one of our all-time favorite songs, Sweet Adeline. A perfect setup and segway to the Sweet Adeline of the Year award ceremony. Ten deserving members were nominated and the 

amazing Nancy Mantle, our immediate past Team Coordinator, was named our 2021 SAOTY!! Tears of joy flowed, and the screen erupted in applause and gorgeous, proud smiles! We are so grateful for Nancy’s leadership the last 3 years as she calmly and expertly helped us transition

from the retirement of our founding director to the hiring of our new director to a journey to international contest in New Orleans to not only surviving but thriving through a pandemic!  Congratulations Nancy! You are amazing!


And now we look to next steps! A return to rehearsal plan is being developed with a goal to be singing together outside in 6 weeks when we return from our summer break. We are zoomed out! We will however record or zoom our sessions where possible to ensure everyone has a comfortable means to participate. The Management Team gifted a singer’s mask to each member. Thanks to the ingenious Carole Griffin and her team who made them for us.


For once, the light at the end of the tunnel is brighter and it is not just the headlight of the train speeding towards us. There’s hope! It’s been a journey – and dare I say – our destination is in clear sight!


Be healthy, be safe and have a great summer! Lucky to be CSC indeed!

JD Crowe

CSC Blogger