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Harmony chorus tuning up for a music-filled season

Battlefords Blend Chorus is hosting guest nights Sept. 13 and 20.

THE BATTLEFORDS — Like many organizations, it feels like Battlefords Blend Harmony Chorus has been in hiding since the beginning of the pandemic in 2020. Plans that were made had to be put on hold while we battled to survive as an organization.

Finally, we have the green light to get out and glow, so we are heading for a busy, music-filled season.

The chorus got an early kick-off to the season with a get-together Aug. 27. It was a chance to socialize and share wonderful food. More importantly, it was an opportunity to learn three new songs that will be included in our repertoire for the 2023-24 season.

Regular rehearsals will start on Sept. 5 at 6:45 at Battleford United Church and continue every Tuesday evening through to the spring. The only exception will be a break for Christmas and New Year. We’ll need all of those rehearsals to be prepared for the full schedule that’s been planned.

To start off, there will be guest nights Sept. 12 and 19. This will give people an idea about what we do and open the door for new members to explore and possibly join our chorus. After a few years of relative inactivity, our numbers are down and we’d love to welcome new members.

Our first performance of the season will be on the afternoon of Oct.15 at Third Avenue United Church in North Battleford. We will be guests at “Sweeping the Dust out of Our Souls” concert which starts at 1:30 p.m. This event is a fundraiser for the Third Avenue United Church’s Mission and Service Fund with admission being by donation. Other entertainment will be provided by the Jubilation Handbell Choir; the piano/violin duo of Sarah Whitbread and Kanndece Quijade-Sawitsky and possibly others.

Next up will be a learning opportunity on Nov. 3 and 4 with guest director Sheryl Brook. Brook is the fun, energetic, knowledgeable director of Hearts of Harmony, a Sweet Adelines chorus in Red Deer, Alta. Like many, Brook has moved several times, but every time she moves, she starts another chorus. Her dedication to barbershop singing has travelled with her since she started with Sweet Adelines International in 1979.

The extra instruction will be a great boost in preparing for “The Elsie Show” at the Dekker Centre, sponsored by Chris Odishaw of Battleford Furniture. There will be two shows on Dec. 10 – one for the public in the afternoon and a special show for Odishaw and his guests in the evening.

While preparing for “The Elsie Show” we will also audition for Telemiracle 48.

When Christmas time comes around, Battlefords Blend will be especially busy entertaining at various care homes plus our annual event at Caleb Village. Once Christmas arrives, we’ll all be ready for a break.

Then it will be back to rehearsals to prepare for competition. In 2024 Sweet Adelines International, Region 26 will be holding their annual competition and convention in Edmonton, Alberta May 9 to 12. In preparation for that competition, we will have guest director Carolyne Oehlerking coming for some intensive fine tuning.

This full schedule requires a commitment from each of our members. Chorus president, Andrea Stewart commented, “it’s a big commitment, but the benefits are even bigger. Never before have I had such a group of friends who support each other through life. It’s a wonderful feeling and a great sound!”

It will be a fun-filled musical year for Battlefords Blend which all starts with our invitation to join us for guest night September 12 and 19. We look forward to new members joining us to entertain our community again.

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