It Was Oshkosh B`gosh!!! It Was Oshkosh B`gosh!!!


It Was Oshkosh B`gosh!!! It Was Oshkosh B`gosh!!!
Land O’ Lakes District Association of
Chapters of SPEBSQSA Inc.
110 7th Avenue North
Nashville, TN 37203-3704
Volume 67, Number 6
November - December 2015
A Bulletin for Barbershoppers in the LO’L District
It Was Oshkosh B’gosh!!!
The Gay 90's
Gary Erickson (contact)
NOTE: Dates shown on this page are for those activities
that have proper clearance through the District
Secretary. Please DO NOT send show registrations to
the editor, DO notify:
ARV ZENK, Secretary
Land O' Lakes District
1706 Mary Lane
N Mankato, MN 56003
[email protected]
Winona, MN
Menomonee Falls, WI
Mankato, MN
St. Croix Valley, MN
Winnipeg, MB
Minneapolis, MN
Greendale, WI
Manitowoc, WI
12-13 Hilltop, MN
15-16 UW-River Falls, WI
LO'L Leadership Academy
Reno, NV
Midwinter International
Green Bay, WI
Fargo/Moorhead, ND
Appleton, WI
Round Midnight
St. Croix Valley, MN
Manitowoc, WI
Mankato, MN
Windom, MN
Dunn County, WI
Minneapolis, MN
Willmar, MN
Storm Front Quartet
Hilltop, MN
Rock Valley, WI
TNS, Vocality
St. Cloud Area, MN
Greendale, WI
29-5/1 Mankato, MN
International Prelims &
Spring Convention
29-5/1 Mankato, MN
Southwest/10,000 Lakes Division
Green Bay, WI
Shoptimus Prime
(320) 269-7148
(480) 924-9725(winter phone)
[email protected]
Bismarck/Mandan, ND
Northern Plains Division Contest
Manitowoc County, WI
Packerland/Division One Contest
Manitowoc County, WI
WI High School Quartet Festival
West Allis, WI
Winnipeg, MB
Nashville, TN
International Convention
West Allis, WI
2015 LO'L District Chorus Champion — Midwest Vocal Express - Greendale, WI - Josh Umhoefer, Director
2015 District Quartet & Novice Champions - CHORD SMASH
2015 District Seniors Quartet Champion - Fermata Nowhere
Sam Sather, Erik Eliason, James Estes, Scott Perau
Larry Slater, Jim Puffe, Mark McLaurin, Paul Sandbek
2015 District Hall of Fame Induction
21-23 Appleton, WI
Fall Convention and District Contests
San Antonio, TX
Mid-Winter International
13-14 UW-River Falls, WI
LO’L Leadership Academy
Green Bay, WI
Super Sing
Recipient Gene Sickels with
daughters Terri and Jeanie
Recipient Duane Rygg and
wife Crystal
Allen E. Kaptizke from Oshkosh, WI Chapter recognized posthumously
YIH Foundation/Sing Canada Parade of Checks
See page 10 for details
Pitch Piper
The Pitch Piper is published bi-monthly by the Land
O' Lakes District Association of Chapters of the Society
for the Preservation and Encouragement of Barbershop
Quartets Singing in America, Inc.
Land O' Lakes Chapters are situated in the states of
Minnesota, North Dakota and Wisconsin, the Upper
Peninsula of Michigan, and the Provinces of
Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Ontario.
Office of Publication:
Editors: Bob/Bill Fricke
2011 S. 14th Street
Manitowoc, WI 54220
Email: [email protected]
Send address changes to Pitch Piper c/o SPEBSQSA,
Inc., 110 7th Avenue North, Nashville, TN 37203-3704
Any and all correspondence or copy should be sent
to the editor.
3036 N Snelling
Roseville, MN 55113
(H): (651) 639-0366 • (C): (651) 242-6864
[email protected]
Executive Vice President:
8091 Stone Creek Drive
Chanhassen, MN 55317-7419
(C): (952) 210-5156
[email protected]
Immediate Past President:
15398 615th Avenue
Mapleton, MN 56065
(H&W): (507) 420-3658 • (C): (507) 420-3658
[email protected]
LO'L Home Page on the
Land O' Lakes District
Celebrates Another Convention!
Submitted by: Steve Zorn
LO’L President
Oshkosh hosted a
memorable convention
in October! The contest
provided a showcase
for our quartets and
choruses to perform for
their friends and family.
Chord Smash showed what a quartet can
sound like when you put it all together.
Midwest Vocal Express won the chorus
contest with great singing and artistry.
Congratulations to both of these groups for
leading the charge in 2015! I was thrilled
to see so many barbershoppers enjoying
themselves during the weekend. The
hallways of the hotels were filled with
Pitch Piper
1706 Mary Lane
N Mankato, MN 56003
(H): (507) 388-7509 • (C): (507) 995-1655
[email protected]
1804 Conant Street
Stevens Point, WI 54481-5819
(H): (715) 344-5746 • (C): (715) 340-3221
[email protected]
District VP - Financial Development:
614 Drumlin Trail
Cambridge, WI 53523
(H&C): (715) 781-8714
[email protected]
District VP - Division One:
N114 W16629 Royal Court
Germantown, WI 53022
(H): (262) 251-8943 • (W) (262) 789-2500
[email protected]
District VP - Packerland:
216 E Capitol Drive
Appleton, WI 54911
(C): (920) 915-2912
[email protected]
District VP - Southwest:
229 16th Street NE
Owatonna, MN 55060
(C): (507) 202-6711
[email protected]
District VP - 10,000 Lakes:
347 187th Street NE
Atwater, MN 56209-911
(H): (320) 974-3370 • (W): (320) 894-0433
(F): (320) 974-8190 • [email protected]
District VP - Northern Plains:
73 Haverstock Crescent
Winnipeg, MB R3P 2M7
(H): (204) 488-2009
[email protected]
singers, especially Saturday night.
Hospitality rooms sponsored by different
Chapters and groups were full of people.
In addition, we had the privilege of
entertainment from the Youth Chorus.
About 60 young men spent the day with
Pete Benson and the Vocality quartet
learning about singing and preparing three
great songs for the audience on Saturday
night. There are a lot of people who
volunteered many hours to make this
convention happen. Carl Grahn, your
o u t g o i n g E v e n t s Vi c e P re s i d e n t ,
coordinated the convention. The
members and families of the Oshkosh
Chapter provided hours of volunteer time.
Jack Kile and Eric Sorenson organized the
youth festival along with other dedicated
men from our district. As always, we
received outstanding stage management
by the dedicated people that make the
District VP - Music & Performance/Education:
611 S Holcombe Street
Stillwater, MN 55082
(H): (651) 439-4527 • (W): (651) 246-7257
[email protected]
District VP - Leadership Training (CSLT):
115 E Linden Street
Stillwater, MN 55082
(H): (651) 262-9843
[email protected]
District VP - Contest and Judging:
3640 N Lilly Road
Brookfield, WI 53005
(H): (262) 781-6587 • (B&C): (262) 844-5184
[email protected]
District VP - Events:
296 Stoney Ridge Road
Ripon, WI 54971
(H): (920) 748-6723 (C) (920) 570-2093
[email protected]
District VP - Marketing & Public Relations:
125 N. Blanding Woods Road
St. Croix Falls, WI 54024
(H): (715) 483-9202
[email protected]
District VP - Membership:
2401 Wight Bay
Brooklyn Park, MN 55443
(H): (763) 439-4447
[email protected]
District VP - Youth In Harmony:
2525 Thomas Court
Onalaska, WI 54650
(H): (608) 781-4678 • (C) (608) 397-1832
[email protected]
show work! Thanks to all.
I just retur ned from the 11/13-15
Leadership Forum held in Nashville TN
where representatives from all the BHS
districts met. Sessions were held for the
following groups: Presidents, Events,
Membership and Outreach, and Chorus
Director Development/Musical
Leadership. Justin McCullough from the
Fargo Chapter joined the Membership and
Outreach group while Dan True, LOL EVP
and I were in the Presidents' group.
MVE ...Continued from page 9
M & D Harmony at the INN
Submitted by Mac Barlass
Christmas show which will be held on Saturday, December 12th
at Greendale High School 6801 Southway Greendale, WI. Show
times are 2pm and 7:30pm. Our special guests include “Martini”SAI International Champs, Midnight Croon and our favorite
youth quartet, Vintage Mix. You can visit for more
details. We will finish off the year the Monday night after our
show with performances at the Ronald McDonald House and the
VA Hospital in Milwaukee.
Couple celebrating wedding anniversary being serenaded by the
M & D Harmony Quartet, Mac Barlass, Mike Franssen, Don
Klassen and Steve Plocher
Having fun as a barbershop quartet is an experience that can turn
out to be more than you expect. Such is the story of the M &D
Harmony Quartet from the St. Croix Valley Chapter. Formed
initially to do Singing Valentines,they have been constantly
improving, and expanding their repertoire.
M & D has done some special event presentations. Last Spring,
Don, who sings Bass, contacted a friend, John Schiltz, who is
Owner & Chef at a local Four Star restaurant, The Lake Elmo
INN. The INN is considered a premier restaurant in the metro area
and has won all kinds of awards. Don suggested that their quartet
would like to sing at the tables, for the guests, and are now singing
two Monday's a month, which coincides with "SENIOR
APPRECIATION NIGHT," for about an hour and a half.
On the way to Oshkosh, last month, we stopped for lunch at a
family restaurant and while waiting for our food, sang for the two
little boys at the next table. Their mother got really excited. It
tuned out that she was the music instructor in the local elementary
school. She has the boys singing in a chorus's and she was happy
to have them hear a barbershop quartet.. Their dad gave the guys
a nice compliment, as they left. It seemed like a rather typical
event, until M & D went to leave. There was no check. The
waitress said, “The family that just left, picked up your bill”. The
tenor, Mac Barlass said "Man what a hobby this is?” and the lead
Mike Franssen added "It's Great to be a Barbershopper. “
Overall the theme of the weekend was
building leadership skills. Dr. Duane
Gunn, a leadership expert, who will be
joining the BHS staff full time in 2016, was
the facilitator. We can use his message and
talents here in LO'L over the years. We
have ideas that can be implemented now
Left to Right Back Row: Rick Van Gomple, Doug Peterson, Eric
Sorenson, Jim Olson, Jim Weber, John Plazek
Front Row: Lise Vaugeois, Kathy Stokes, Joel Gotz, Sean Mueller,
Douglas Carnes, Brandon Galbraith, Chris VanderPas
Continued on page 10...
November - December 2015
Pitch Piper
November - December 2015
President... Continued from page 2
Better Ways ...Continued from page 9
A New Year's Resolution!
What we learned from the whole session was the amazing
increase in interest in the Barbershop style. The BHS is raising
its profile in music organizations and in the media. From
national TV spots (Crossroads quartet on Fox and Friends) to
International music organizations (American Choral Directors
Association and National Association for Music Educators) the
BHS is being asked perform and represent a cappella music! It
is hard to keep track of the activities but you can follow and
experience what is happening by keeping your LiveWire email
coming to you. This is full of great information. You can also
join the Barbershop Harmony Society You Tube Channel to
learn more!
4. Different strokes for different folks
Email is great, but we live in a mobile era that offers many ways to
reach your audience—at their desks or on the go. Whether using
social media feeds, messaging apps, email services, or,
whaterver, you don't need to restrict your marketing messages to
only one channel. In keeping with the theme of personalization,
you should customize delivery methods to ensure that each
audience member receives your message via the channel they
are most receptive to. Ask users during a sign-up or onboarding
process how they prefer to receive communications. Let them
select or unselect channels pre-emptively, and then periodically
give them a reminder that they can update those settings.
Host a Visitor/Guest Night Event!!!
Finally we learned that BHS is in great financial shape. You
may have noticed that there were no dues increases in 2015 and
we hope for the same in 2016. No increase even when the BHS
grants awarded to chapters have increased dramatically. First
the Barbershop Harmony Society has increased it efficiency in
sales and music publication. Second, the Harmony Foundation
has been successful in raising money that is used for many
programs (see my last Pitch Piper article) throughout the society.
5. Decide what works best for you
Step back and analyze your approach. Ask yourself what worked,
then continue implementing it. Concurrently, decide what didn't
work, and find a way to fix it. Once you have determined the
method that allows your message to be delivered to the right
audience... repeat, repeat, repeat.
Winning an audience is a more competitive process than ever
before: You must have an engaging message, but you must also
deliver it in a clear, clever, and compelling manner. To rise above
the noise threshold of the digital world and get your message
heard, you have to constantly re-assess content and delivery, and
to quickly adapt to changing tastes and needs. There is never a
lack of opportunities to keep people following our hobby.
While we celebrate another convention in LO'L, we also
celebrate the opportunities we have to share our music with
others and we are in great shape to do just that. Thanks to all of
you for your dedication to our great organization. We are
touching a lot of lives!
Submitted by Harvey Weiss
LO’L Director Membership
There was a 1960's hit
b y C o n n i e Fr a n c i s
called, "Where The
Boys Are." Personally,
I have tried to forget
a l l t h a t s ex - c r a z e d
beach-mania in Ft.
Lauderdale. But…………to extend the
theme of this article, shouldn't we be
looking at "Where the Men Are."
(CORN?) It is a query we have been trying
to answer as membership is a nagging
How do we get men OF ALL AGES to see
the benefits of the craft of barbershop
singing and all that goes with it. (Not a
question but a statement.) What can we do
to entice invitee's to a get to-know-eachother kind of evening?
I’m going to brainstorm here, so no
interruptions please! (smile) These are just
things I thought about, which can be
considered when planning a chapter event:
(Just add to your own list already made!)
Have a big-name headliner
entertainment guest?............
Parade of Checks - LOL District October - 2015
Get local business's to donate valuable
door prizes…..
Provide free food and
Hold evening off-site from regular
Bring wives along, as they will be the
deciding factor…………
Join first, then invite local chambers of
commerce, Fraternal Organizations,
Rotary, Gun Club's (or maybe not!)
Combine chapter's and have it more
regional and they can go where it is
closest for them……………
Recruit high school or local college
music educator's to to bring some
singers along…….(duh)
Hire an entertaining Emcee to keep it
light and focused on a planned
Sing prepared tags anywhere it can be
Show a DVD of your annual show, sing
out or a competition ….
My space is limited so I have to end it here.
But one final note: Notice all the bold
lettered words have one thing in
common; they are ACTION words. It will
take some work, but by thinking outside
the box, you can enrich the lives of new
men waiting to be asked.
A huge thank you all LOL Chapters donating money through the
Parade of Checks at the Oshkosh convention.
Bismarck-Manden Manitowoc
Duluth Mankato
Dunn County
Fergus Falls Ripon
Grand Forks
Rock Valley
The chapters supporting the Districts YIH activity are:
Stevens Point
St. Croix Valley
Here’s some CHORD
SMASH! pic
Submitted by Dick Teeters
As of the writing of this article the
division and district singing contests
have been completed. However,
there is one district contest that is
ready to get underway. That contest
is for Chapter Achievement Awards.
Chapter Achievement Awards -- This
contest is entered by having a
member of the chapter, usually the
secretary, complete a form. There are
approximately 30 categories in
which the chapter can earn points.
Examples are: Membership Drives,
Annual Shows, Other Chorus
Pe r f o r m a n c e s , Q u a r t e t
Performances, Par ticipation in
Division and District Contest, Youth
Outreach Activities, Chapter Board
and Music Committee Meetings to
name just a few. Awards are
presented to the top three chapters in
each of three plateaus, based on
chapter membership. It's easy to
participate and every chapter should
have an entrant. The form can be
downloaded from the documents
section in the district website.
I encourage every chapter to enter
this contest. Last year less than half of
the chapters participated in the
Achievement Awards contest. I
would really like to have a lot more
(100%?). Make it your New Year's
Submitted by Jim Hall, VP-Financial Development
The following chapters donated to the Harmony Foundation to
support our districts Youth Chorus, “HARMONY 2 GO” performing
in Reno, NV in January.
Achievement Contest
season is here!
If anyone has any questions,
please contact me at ...
[email protected] and I'll
provide you with all the information
you need.
St. Paul
The Canadian chapters who support the Canadian organization
Sing Canada are:
Thunder Bay
Again, a huge THANK YOU to all chapters who contribute plus a
number of individuals who contribute through their chapters.
Here’s some CHORD SMASH!
Congratulations, guys, from SCX
Pitch Piper
November - December 2015
Pitch Piper
November - December 2015
Winnipeg Golden Chordsmen
Awards Banquet
Submitted by Art Gross
Vocal Point (Art Gross, Charles Siegel, Harold
Casselman & Bruce Wilton)
Winnipeg Chapter's 2015 Quartet Of The Year
With this year's annual BOTY Banquet
falling the night before Hallowe'en,
members of The Winnipeg Golden
Chordsmen were invited to dress in
costume for the occasion. The result was
overwhelming, with the majority of those
in attendance in some really great
costumes. Attendance Awards were given
out for each section. The winners in each
category were: Art Gross - Tenor, Brian
Metcalfe - Lead, Harold Casselman Baritone, and Herold Driedger – Bass. A
fairly new award, the Rookie of the Year
Award, was presented to Chris Magas for
his great participation in the Lead Section,
and being the assistant to the Chorus
Manager – and most recently taking over
that position. The Dorothy Casselman
Lifetime Achievement Award (so-named
in honour of Harold Casselman's late wife
who was a long-time supporter of the
Chapter) which goes to a 20+ year
member of the Chapter still making major
contributions to the Chapter, went to Art
The Chorus's Quartet of The Year was a
very close decision this year, with Vocal
Point (Charles Siegel, Harold Casselman,
Bruce Wilton and Art Gross) narrowly outscoring Harlequin to take honours. This is
the second time Vocal Point has been
honoured with this reward having
achieved this award in 2012. And the
coveted Barbershopper Of The Year
Award went to Brian Metcalfe. Having
been in the chapter just over two years,
Brian has managed to make his mark on
the chapter in a big way. He has served on
Pitch Piper
various committees, worked as cochairman for our 2015 Annual Show, and
is the Chairman for the 2016 Show, is a
Member At Large on the Chapter board,
assisted our weekly Notes-4-U editor while
he was recuperating from an operation,
and set up a “Getting To Know You”
section in the weekly bulletin highlighting
the background of a different chorus
member each and every week. It was a
“spooktacular” evening filled with lots of
fun, prizes galore, great food, and lots of
wonderful costumes. Now, how do we
follow that up next year?
underlying "so what" attitude. The amount
of planning, thought, coordinating done by
Jack Kile must have been enormous. The
past chairs of YIH and Harmony Explosion
Camps such as Dick Staedt and Jon
Buss can only say Amen! If the thought of
sharing this experience with youth in your
area does not move you, do it out of respect
to these men who start planning, nine or ten
months before the event. If that does not
move you, how about the Social aspects of
an event such as this? I doubt if in the future,
any of these singers will have their names in
the papers for vandalism or crime.
When you have the opportunity, in fact do
it now. Thank Jack Kile, Vocality and
Pete Benson for what those of you who
were there experienced. I was absolutely
thrilled to have been there. That alone was,
at least for me, the highlight of the
Dear Land O' Lakes District,
Brian Metcalfe, Winnipeg's 2015
Barbershopper Of The Year, with his wife Sally
The Magic Formula
Submitted by Rudy Zarling
What do you get when you combine
students eager to learn and a qualified
eager Director willing to teach? Walls
blown out of the Alber ta Kimball
Auditorium! After possibly 6-7 hours
sprinkled with breaks, visits from guest
quartets, Pete Benson worked his magic
on 53 young folks who up to the 24th of
October had not met each other. I believe if
they could have entered the competition,
they would have scored high numbers.
What does that prove? For starters you
need singers. Duh. The fact that 53 were
there indicates to me that there are young
men and boys out there wanting to
participate. Could we have had 70 on
stage? I believe we could. We could if ALL
the chapters, at least the chapters within
100 miles or so would have sent even one
student. You could not share the
experience with one young person from
your city? You could not find 25.00 dollars
among you to let him hear the applause
that these 53 young folks did? Only 4
chapters sponsored participants. I would
hope that this does not reflect an
CHORD SMASH! would like to take a
moment to thank all of you for your
friendship, fellowship, hospitality, and
kind words at the Fall Convention. We
are honored to be your new champions,
and plan on representing the district as
best as we can in the coming year.
Our success could not have been
possible without the assistance of our
two main coaches, Paul Wigley and
John Newell. They have both helped us
immensely in our short time together,
and we look forward to coaching with
them in the future. We also would like to
thank our incredible families for all of
their love and support, especially in the
last few weeks leading up to the District
We hope to see you at one of our
upcoming performances, including the
Minneapolis Commodores Christmas
Show and the Land O' Lakes
Preliminary Competition in Mankato. If
you would like more information on the
quartet, please visit our website: or follow us and
Facebook and/or Twitter. We would love
to sing for you!
Sam Sather, Erik Eliason, James Estes,
and Scott Perau
November - December 2015
Another successful year
for the MVE
Five Better Ways to Boost Barbershop
in a Busy World
Submitted by: Jim Schmidt
President, Greendale Chapter, BHS
Submitted by Ken & Barb Mettler
Welcome to another chapter of Marketing the Magic of Barbershop
Harmony..... in an era of abundant information! It is truly an
honor to spread the joy of Barbershop Harmony! Today we are
going to look at how we can get through to folks in an age of
information overload and best boost the "barbershop" brand
name. If you would like help getting more seats filled for your next
performance, this article is for you.
The Internet can instantly bring you almost any bit of information
you could ever want. But there's a downside to having tons of
information in the palm of your hand, especially for
barbershoppers eager to have their message heard. So many
communications and messages are reaching everyone in your
audience, that it requires more skill than ever to get our audience's
attention and make our message stand out.
Here are five quick tips on how to communicate your most
important barbershop messages and cut through the clutter of a
crowded marketplace in the modern mobile era.
It's hard to believe that we are closing in on the end of another
year. We started off in January with 34 members committed to
competing with the chorus in Pittsburgh in July. In the months
leading up to International we brought in a number of coaches
to work with us, hosted the Division One/Packerland division
contests and put on an outstanding spring show with Vocal
Spectrum as our headliners. Along the way, the members
bonded together in a special way as each member worked to
raise their own personal performance to a higher level. As we
got on the risers at our send-off night in late June, it was very
evident that the chorus was confident and ready to represent
the Land 'O Lakes District in the MVE style after a two year
absence from the International stage. After a short break
following International, we started working on our standard
show rep along with a Christmas song thrown in here and
there to prepare for our upcoming performances. It wasn't
long before we started to dust off our contest package in
preparation for the District contest in Oshkosh. We were
excited when we were asked to perform for the Youth in
Harmony participants that would be there that weekend. Of
course we had some logistics to overcome, including needing
to do that performance on Saturday morning instead of after
the chorus contest due to a number of our members leaving
right after the chorus contest to head home. With the help of
Carl Grahn, we were able to rehearse early at the convention
center, perform for the youth during their break around 10:30
and then head over to the school to prepare for our 12:10 on
stage time. I will say that every member of the chapter was
thrilled to share what we do with these young men. It is very
important that we continue to share this wonderful hobby and
lifestyle with the younger generation, they are our future. After
being named chorus champions, we were honored to perform
the same three songs we shared with the youth for the
convention attendees. The enthusiastic applause you
showered us with that afternoon, and the support we have
received from the Land 'O Lakes District year in and year out
are greatly appreciated. We would like to thank Carl Grahn
and all of his volunteers for putting on an awesome weekend
for the District. It's great to be from Land 'O Lakes. We have
done a number of performances in the Greendale community
this year including the upcoming Christmas tree lighting
November 27th and their annual Dickens Festival on
December 4th. We are now putting the final touches on our
1. Personalize your communications
This means more than just simply incorporating users' names on
email messages. Yes, we can give offers, deals, and news, but our
audiences want to feel like we "get" them. It is when they have a
sense of connection that we draw them back to our shows again
and again. In personalizing our message, service, and information
to each user, we make it that much more likely that we will peak
someone's interest and we get a "hit." What's more, your message
stands out from impersonalized communications, and you
demonstrate to your customers that you understand who they are
and what they are into.
2. Market with the best tools available
We live in an age of big data, and you shouldn't shy away from
gathering evidence and testing. You get only one chance to make a
good impression, so,don't be afraid to use various methods and
check to see what is working best. MailChimp (for email),
Optimizely (for web content), and PickFu (for graphic and print
material) are good examples of those that can help you gain this
3. Measure results and adapt
One local group used MailChimp but didn't realize for months that
their messages were not sent out because of some glitch and
wondered why people weren't responding. So, track performance
during and after delivery. Without hard, tangible evidence, you
can't confidently claim your message is being well-received, and
ongoing measurement helps you keep track of results from larger
changes over time that likely aren't captured in a few rounds of
testing. For outbound communications, such as emails you want
to know successful delivery rates, click-through rates, conversion
rates, and unsubscribe/unfollow rates. Don't neglect the rates of
bad outcomes (such as unsubscribes or unfollows); more
annoying, in-your-face marketing might easily alienate users and
turn them off entirely from your message.
Continued on page 11...
Continued on page 10 ...
Pitch Piper
November - December 2015
PitchPiper - November 2015
“Singers Rock!” YIH FESTIVAL
Submitted by Vocality
The Minneapolis Commodores and
Greater St Paul North Star Choruses in
partnership with SAI Lake County and
Vallee de Croix Choruses are sponsoring
the 3rd Annual Twin Cities Youth in
H ar m ony A Cappel l a Fes tival .
Students 6th - 12th grades are invited to
participate in the one day festival on
Saturday, February 6th, 2016.
Like many of you, Vocality had a great time at the District Convention in Oshkosh.
On Friday after the quartet semi-final contest, we had the opportunity to sing in the
Association of District Champs (ADC) chorus and then also share several of our songs
with a very appreciative audience. On Saturday we enjoyed being the teaching
quartet for the Youth in Harmony (YIH) chorus. About 55 young men from around
the District gathered at 9:00 AM and under the terrific leadership of Pete Benson they
came together as an excellent chorus by that evening. Watching their enthusiasm
grow during the day was very rewarding. Thanks to Jack Kile for organizing this
event. The future of singing in close harmony is looking brighter all the time!
After congratulating Chord Smash and the MVE on their championships we hosted
our 5th annual hospitality room. It was great fun to have so many quartets stop by
and perform and also hear all the tag singing that popped up in between
performances. It must have been a success as there wasn't an abundance of left over
beverages and while the sun wasn't quite up when we went to bed – it wasn't far
behind! Special thanks to Carl Grahn for all his help in coordinating a fantastic
The festival will be held at Washington
Technology Magnet School, 1495 Rice
Street in St. Paul. Participants will have
specific instruction on vocal production as
well as visual performance. Doug Carnes,
the dynamic front-line director of the Great
Northern Union Chorus and Liz Miller,
Assistant Director of City of Lakes Chorus,
will be directing the choruses. Quartets
Vocality and Star Burst!, along with Scott
Kvigne and Becky Perkins from City of
Lakes Chorus, will be working with the
students in the nuances of singing the 4part harmony style and “selling the song.”
All through the weekend we had a wonderful time. It was great to hear that so many
people love our new arrangements and we look forward to sharing them at chapter
shows all across the district. Please let us know if you'd like to have us on your show!
The festival will conclude with a 4:30
performance by the students and quartets.
This performance is open to the public.
We are proud to be a part of the LO'L District, and we hope to see you soon!
The $5 student registration fee includes
music, learning tracks, lunch/snacks, YIH Tshirt and best of all, a fun day of
experiencing Barbershop harmony!
For more information visit
We were also fortunate to have a very nice group dinner with the ADC members, the
Hall of Fame members and the judges on Saturday evening. We enjoyed singing a
couple of songs and as a group we recognized the passing of a great barbershopper,
Bob Thiel. It is certainly very sad that Bob is no longer with us, but it was great to
remember how important this hobby is to all of us and the life-long friendships it helps
us develop.
Jay, David, Tony & Tom
2007 LO'L District Quartet Champs
Pete Benson rehearsing the YIH chorus
In Memoriam
Harry Lettman, baritone member of the Lake Shore 4, 1957 LOL
District Champions and Int’l competitors. They won the District
championship in Hudson, WI besting the Hut 4 by 7 points. Harry
passed away at the age of 92. He had been a resident of Luther
Manor in Milwaukee for many years along with his wife Sally who
predeceased Harry some years ago.
Bob Thiel, long time barbershopper and former director of the Fox
Valleyaries and the Pride of the Valley choruses died unexpectedly
on October 21, 2015 at the age of 71. Bob was a long time quartet
singer, most recently as lead of Perfect Timing.
Pitch Piper
November - December 2015
Pitch Piper
Full information available at
November - December 2015
you can do with performances other than your annual show to
have the maximum impact on an audience. And if you plan it well,
you may motivate guys in the audience to want to come and sing
with you and be part of the fun. The class utilizes many of the ideas
from the Standing Ovation Program. We used to call these shorter
performances “sing-outs,” but even if it's only a 20-minute
package it can have the same impact as a longer show. For
example, what can you do to tailor the shorter performance to grab
that particular audience? Little things can make a big difference.
New Ideas and Tools to Help Your Chapter Grow
Leadership Training Academy - Lakes Chord College (LTA-LCC)
January 15 & 16, 2016
Submitted by Dave Sylte
District Education Team
One thing that all chapters large and small share is a desire to find
more singers and make their chapter grow. This year's
Leadership Training Academy-Lakes Chord College (LTALCC) on January 15-16, 2016 at UW-River Falls will give
you some new ideas and tools to help get this done. Among the
wide variety of classes being offered are four new classes that zero
in on chapter growth. Here is a little background on each of those
Barberpole Cat Songbook Vol. II – New Music FREE to
LTA-LCC Students
If these new chapter growth classes aren't enough to motivate you
to register for the LTA-LCC, how about some FREE new music?
How about singing these new songs with 150+ other guys? The
Society released the Barberpole Cat Songbook Vol. II earlier
this year with 12 new Pole Cat songs. So we want to dive into these
songs at a 2-hour mass sing on Friday night and again on the
Saturday afternoon 1-hour wrap-up session. Four different music
directors will lead us through as many songs as possible. Here's the
best part. Each registered student at the LTA-LCC will
receive a FREE copy of the new Songbook. Now do we have
your attention?
Generational Differences – Class Two
This class is a follow-up to Larry Lewis' popular class from last
year on Generational Differences. Larry's facts and figures
served as a wake-up call for things we need to consider if we want
our chapters to grow. In fact, if we don't recognize the different
values, beliefs and priorities of the five generations in our society
and adjust accordingly, our numbers will only decline. Larry will
share some updated information and membership statistics for
the District and the Society. To reinforce these ideas, a panel of
young Barbershoppers from the younger generations will join
Larry to explain and describe what they want and expect from
their Barbershopping experience. Larry's class from last year,
Generational Differences – Class One, will be offered again
this year. This class is a prerequisite for taking the new class,
Generational Differences – Class Two.
How to Register
Tuition for the weekend will still be only $85 for 2 days of
classes and 5 meals. We again will offer the 5 for 4 tuition
special where a chapter can register 5 guys and pay tuition for
only 4 (or register 10 and only pay for 8). Registration and hotel
information is posted on the LO'L District website at and it has been sent to every chapter President
and Secretary. Mark you calendars for January 15-16,
Learn to Sing Recruitment Program
You've probably read about this program in the Harmonizer and
how the Denver, Colorado chapter has been very successful with
the program. But maybe you felt that the program was more than
your chapter could handle. This class will help you rethink that as
Thom Schubbe shares the experiences of the Mankato chapter
which has made very effective use of the program. He will show
how the program provides many other benefits to a chapter
besides membership recruitment.
X-treme Growth Plan for Chapters
Two years ago we had Paul Ellinger, the Society's membership
growth guru, at the LTA-LCC to share his TurboGrowth
membership plan. Now Paul has developed a new updated plan
which he calls an “X-treme Growth Plan for Chapters.” Mike
Scott has been trained in Paul's concepts, which he will present in
this class. You'll need to attend the class to learn more details, but
to stimulate your interest here is how Paul describes the new stuff:
“It touts that regardless of the number of members or their singing
level, if they follow the plan to the letter in 18 months ANY chapter
can be at 100 members.” If that doesn't grab you, here's how
Mike describes it, “The plan is by far more exciting than a stuffy
old traditional guest night.”
Planning a Chorus Performance Package
One of Paul Ellinger's key membership growth ideas is that you
find new singers by getting out and singing to as many audiences
as possible. This class picks up on that idea by focusing on things
Pitch Piper
November - December 2015
Pitch Piper
November - December 2015

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