Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

Competition, Competition, Competition

Expand Messages
  • providenceguyri
    It seems we spend a lot of time and energy talking about Competing. Yet, only a small portion of choruses and quartets actually compete. I find that we spend
    Message 1 of 10 , Sep 28, 2011
    • 0 Attachment
      It seems we spend a lot of time and energy talking about Competing.
      Yet, only a small portion of choruses and quartets actually compete.
      I find that we spend too much time focusing on competition instead of PERFORMING. Look around, how many of your local chapters can fill a one hour show for the public? How many quartets can fill a one hour gig?
      From what I can tell, very few, especially here in the NED. So many quartets only know enough songs to compete with. We complain that we are not visible enough in our communities, but when we are asked to put on a show or do a gig, we often can't fill them because we don't have enough "performing" groups. My Quartet will have over 100 appearances this year, only because we have over 40 songs in our repertoire and can fill these gigs. But often can't find a quartet to take our overflow.
      I think we have our priorities all mixed up in the Society. The public doesn't care about our competitions. That's an internal event. The public cares about seeing us perform in public. Let's put as much energy and time into preparing our members to be able to fill shows/gigs and then we will see a growth in our membership.
    • Dick Johnson
      Finally - a breath of fresh air has entered the room! I wish you had signed your name. Let the breezes blow more zephyrs. Dick Johnson Great Falls, MT ...
      Message 2 of 10 , Sep 28, 2011
      • 0 Attachment
        Finally - a breath of fresh air has entered the room! I wish you
        had signed your name. Let the breezes blow more zephyrs.




        Dick Johnson
        Great Falls, MT



        -----Original Message-----
        From: providenceguyri <SingNBC@...>
        To: bbshop <bbshop@yahoogroups.com>
        Sent: Wed, Sep 28, 2011 6:10 am
        Subject: [bbshop] Competition, Competition, Competition


        It seems we spend a lot of time and energy talking about Competing.
        Yet, only a small portion of choruses and quartets actually compete.
        I find that we spend too much time focusing on competition instead of
        PERFORMING. Look around, how many of your local chapters can fill a one hour
        show for the public? How many quartets can fill a one hour gig?
        From what I can tell, very few, especially here in the NED. So many quartets
        only know enough songs to compete with. We complain that we are not visible
        enough in our communities, but when we are asked to put on a show or do a gig,
        we often can't fill them because we don't have enough "performing" groups. My
        Quartet will have over 100 appearances this year, only because we have over 40
        songs in our repertoire and can fill these gigs. But often can't find a quartet
        to take our overflow.
        I think we have our priorities all mixed up in the Society. The public doesn't
        care about our competitions. That's an internal event. The public cares about
        seeing us perform in public. Let's put as much energy and time into preparing
        our members to be able to fill shows/gigs and then we will see a growth in our
        membership.



        ------------------------------------

        Yahoo! Groups Links







        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • providenceguyri
        Sorry about not signing my post. Having a Senior Moment I guess. Steve Isherwood Ocean State Chorus - Director Lincoln, RI Generations Quartet - Lead
        Message 3 of 10 , Sep 28, 2011
        • 0 Attachment
          Sorry about not signing my post. Having a "Senior Moment" I guess.

          Steve Isherwood
          Ocean State Chorus - Director
          Lincoln, RI
          Generations Quartet - Lead
        • R S York
          Steve: I share your feelings. AMEN !! Chord-ially, Roger York, Director Chanticleers Men s Barbershop Chorus “We don’t sing because we’re happy, we re
          Message 4 of 10 , Sep 28, 2011
          • 0 Attachment
            Steve:

            I share your feelings. AMEN !!

            Chord-ially,
            Roger York, Director
            Chanticleers Men's Barbershop Chorus
            �We don�t sing because we�re happy, we're happy because we sing.
            Would You Like To Hear Us?









            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          • Richard Taylor
            Hi All: Recently providence guy wrote: It seems we spend a lot of time and energy talking about Competing. Yet, only a small portion of choruses and
            Message 5 of 10 , Sep 28, 2011
            • 0 Attachment
              Hi All:
              Recently "providence guy" wrote:



              "It seems we spend a lot of time and energy talking about Competing. Yet, only a small portion of choruses and quartets actually compete. I find that we spend too much time focusing on competition instead of PERFORMING. Look around, how many of your local chapters can fill a one hour show for the public? How many quartets can fill a one hour gig? From what I can tell, very few, especially here in the NED. So many quartets only know enough songs to compete with. We complain that we are not visible enough in our communities, but when we are asked to put on a show or do a gig, we often can't fill them because we don't have enough "performing" groups.


              And, prior to that my good friend Marty Israel wrote speaking of the "founding" of the Deans of Harmony in New Jersey, a group that I had the privilege of being the founding Musical Director and the Director for the first 4 years when the Deans continually scored very well as a group of 16-23 singers.


              Performance...or should it be PERFORMANCE!!!!! is the number one consideration of any group that expects to grow within their own community. Audiences want to be entertained...and...not to disrespect any audience, most people listening to an a cappella group will often be absolutely enthralled with the harmony and the entertainment value of guys singing with NO music and with choreograph. And, as long as you are singing in good quality and with energy..in tune, you can win over audiences in spite of minor performance errors.


              I am currently the Musical Director of the Rahway Jerseyaires, a chapter from MAD with only 27 men on the roster. Our "Performing" group runs from 10-15 singers and our Show Package is a solid 40 minute show with choreography, familiar songs, specialty numbers, audience participation and chapter quartet appearances when they are available. We do an annual show and we get approximately 6-8 well paid performance opportunities each year.


              Just last Sunday we appeared for audiences at a mountainside outdoor festival for Union County and had 400 reasons ($) for doing 2 - 40 minute shots to an audience sitting on hay bails and standing in front of the hay wagon on which we were singing . This is the 5th year I have directed this particular gig and they have already booked us for next year.


              Here is the real point of the statement that "Performing" is the key element. At the Sunday gig, the time we were contracted for was a 1:00PM start for the first show, but because of a scheduling problem, the printed program showed us on at noon....Well, if your guys are anything like my guys, at noon, we only had 7...that's right...SEVEN men at the location...fortunately at least one on each part. And, what did we do... WE WENT ON STAGE and those seven men, all comfortable with their own "performance skills" developed through hard rehearsal, sang the beginning of the gig and by the middle of the gig, the other 4 men signed up were there and singing.


              Our two audiences loved the show and our guys were rewarded by wonderful applause and by comments from many folks who came up after the show to tell my guys how much they enjoyed the shows. The BONUS is potential show ticket sales for our April 2012 show and perhaps a man who is going to visit a rehearsal.


              Oh, did I mention...... PERFORMANCE AND ENTERTAINMENT IS MORE IMPORTANT THAN ANY OTHER SINGLE ELEMENT IN A PUBLIC PERFORMANCE.


              We are now on a program to grow the number of singers in the Jerseyaires and we can all assure you that the men we take as members will have or be taught the importance of performance skills in addition to the right notes and words. Having 10-15 in your performing chorus is not a liability...it's just another opportunity to work as an ensemble ...together..to entertain in the barbershop style.


              Growth in a singing organization, as Charlie Davenport said, will come when your "potential" singers hear good in-tune music and great performance skills and know (from the show MC) that our guys were standing right where they are standing before they came to enjoy barbershop. Singing in the community as many times as you can, with a planned well sung/performed show will bring singers and performers to your group.


              Sorry for the length of the post, but this entire issue of "size is better" or "hiding voices in big groups...etc" or "not developing the ability to put on a public performance" are all subjects that are excuses for not working as hard as your musical people can to improve the confidence and musical ability of all of your singers, regardless of the number in your group. A great barbershoppper and director once told me ... "What the hell are you talking about saying you need more singers for your performance...you only need FOUR to make our music excellent". I agree


              Regards,
              Rich Taylor, Musical Director and VP of Marketing and Membership (that's right we all wear more than 1 hat)
              Rahway Valley (NJ) Jerseyaires
              A Chapter proud to perform Barbershop in our community







              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            • Marty Israel
              Hi Steve! Thanks! I couldn t agree more! Canto ergo sum Marty Israel Long live the 7th To: bbshop@yahoogroups.com From: SingNBC@aol.com Date: Wed, 28 Sep 2011
              Message 6 of 10 , Sep 28, 2011
              • 0 Attachment
                Hi Steve!

                Thanks! I couldn't agree more!

                Canto ergo sum

                Marty Israel
                Long live the 7th




                To: bbshop@yahoogroups.com
                From: SingNBC@...
                Date: Wed, 28 Sep 2011 16:10:41 +0000
                Subject: [bbshop] Competition, Competition, Competition






                It seems we spend a lot of time and energy talking about Competing.
                Yet, only a small portion of choruses and quartets actually compete.
                I find that we spend too much time focusing on competition instead of PERFORMING. Look around, how many of your local chapters can fill a one hour show for the public? How many quartets can fill a one hour gig?
                From what I can tell, very few, especially here in the NED. So many quartets only know enough songs to compete with. We complain that we are not visible enough in our communities, but when we are asked to put on a show or do a gig, we often can't fill them because we don't have enough "performing" groups. My Quartet will have over 100 appearances this year, only because we have over 40 songs in our repertoire and can fill these gigs. But often can't find a quartet to take our overflow.
                I think we have our priorities all mixed up in the Society. The public doesn't care about our competitions. That's an internal event. The public cares about seeing us perform in public. Let's put as much energy and time into preparing our members to be able to fill shows/gigs and then we will see a growth in our membership.






                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
              • ckadeeg
                ... I agree with the basis of your comment. In fact, you may find that most of the judging community wishes more groups would perform more and make their
                Message 7 of 10 , Sep 30, 2011
                • 0 Attachment
                  --- In bbshop@yahoogroups.com, "providenceguyri" <SingNBC@...> wrote:
                  >
                  > It seems we spend a lot of time and energy talking about Competing.
                  > Yet, only a small portion of choruses and quartets actually compete.
                  > I find that we spend too much time focusing on competition instead of PERFORMING. Look around, how many of your local chapters can fill a one hour show for the public? How many quartets can fill a one hour gig?
                  >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

                  I agree with the basis of your comment. In fact, you may find that most of the judging community wishes more groups would perform more and make their skills habit.

                  My only disagreement is that I don't think the two extremes of your argument are mutually exclusive. You will find that choruses and quartets who do better in competition tend to also be the ones that have a larger repertoire at a higher quality level. VM has how many recordings? Crossroads can sing for how long without repeating a song? Contests are successful for them because they approach it all as performing, and the contest happens to be a performance with critics.

                  I think the biggest problem is not competing, but using the tool properly. If you are performign at a 50s level and you have a history and knowledge of that, then competing to WIN might not be the healthiest decision. However, competing to gain FREE FEEDBACK from trained volunteers in order to improve your year-round PERFORMANCE level is a nice opportunity.

                  Add to that the fact that the convention itself allows your members to be exposed to other groups, woodhedding, lobby singing, and another performance opportunity... I would LOVE to see more groups taking advantage of the opportunities conventions bring. And if you approach the contest part honestly and educationally, then I think many chapters would have a great time, REGARDLESS of the score.

                  Alan Gordon
                  gotchabari@...
                • barvazoni
                  Not long after reading the earlier posts on this topic I found myself driving past a firehouse. There was a basketball hoop outside and some firemen were out
                  Message 8 of 10 , Oct 1, 2011
                  • 0 Attachment
                    Not long after reading the earlier posts on this topic I found myself driving past a firehouse. There was a basketball hoop outside and some firemen were out there shooting baskets. We men being competitive by nature, its likely that at some point they may even challenge a neighboring firehouse to a game. Eventually others will be invited, and you could call it the beginnings of an informal league. If things progress as they usually do, some members of the league will take it very seriously. They'll call special practices, bring in ringers, and become generally obsessed with winning at basketball. The less obsessed, tired of being trampled in lopsided games against the serious teams, will simply stop participating in the competition. Its not fun anymore, so why bother?

                    Is this what has happened to us?
                  • Dick Johnson
                    Is this what has happened to us? - - - O - - - | - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - Another cry from the wilderness? Dick Johnson Great Falls, MT
                    Message 9 of 10 , Oct 1, 2011
                    • 0 Attachment
                      "Is this what has happened to us?"

                      - - - O - - - |

                      - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
                      Another cry from the wilderness? <G>


                      Dick Johnson
                      Great Falls, MT



                      -----Original Message-----
                      From: barvazoni <ron@...>
                      To: bbshop <bbshop@yahoogroups.com>
                      Sent: Sat, Oct 1, 2011 5:19 am
                      Subject: [bbshop] Re: Competition, Competition, Competition


                      Not long after reading the earlier posts on this topic I found myself driving
                      past a firehouse. There was a basketball hoop outside and some firemen were out
                      there shooting baskets. We men being competitive by nature, its likely that at
                      some point they may even challenge a neighboring firehouse to a game. Eventually
                      others will be invited, and you could call it the beginnings of an informal
                      league. If things progress as they usually do, some members of the league will
                      take it very seriously. They'll call special practices, bring in ringers, and
                      become generally obsessed with winning at basketball. The less obsessed, tired
                      of being trampled in lopsided games against the serious teams, will simply stop
                      participating in the competition. Its not fun anymore, so why bother?

                      Is this what has happened to us?





                      ------------------------------------

                      Yahoo! Groups Links







                      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                    • Kevin Keller
                      Ron wrote: Not long after reading the earlier posts on this topic I found myself driving past a firehouse. There was a basketball hoop outside and some firemen
                      Message 10 of 10 , Oct 1, 2011
                      • 0 Attachment
                        Ron wrote: Not long after reading the earlier posts on this topic I found
                        myself driving past a firehouse. There was a basketball hoop outside and
                        some firemen were out there shooting baskets. We men being competitive by
                        nature, its likely that at some point they may even challenge a neighboring
                        firehouse to a game. Eventually others will be invited, and you could call
                        it the beginnings of an informal league. If things progress as they usually
                        do, some members of the league will take it very seriously. They'll call
                        special practices, bring in ringers, and become generally obsessed with
                        winning at basketball. The less obsessed, tired of being trampled in
                        lopsided games against the serious teams, will simply stop participating in
                        the competition. Its not fun anymore, so why bother?



                        KK: It's been going on for years, through good and lean years. Started in
                        1939 with quartets and 195x with choruses. An age-old question.



                        I completely agree with Alan G on the judging community wishing that members
                        didn't view this as a "winning/losing" proposition. Although we write down
                        scores because people wish to be competitive, we are motivated to be there
                        to help you become a better barbershop singer/performer. If all I did was
                        write down a score, I wouldn't be a judge. Come to a HU class on "So You
                        Wanna Be a Judge" and you quickly learn that you, too, can score pretty well
                        with the rubric that our C&J system uses. A few years ago I was at a SUN
                        convention and The Miamians were in the lobby on a Friday afternoon giving a
                        "lobby show". When we talk to quartets (and choruses as well) we find out
                        that people have different expectations about going to contest. Not
                        everyone is there to win. Some are there to participate (would you rather
                        sing or watch?). Some are there to compete. Others are there to push their
                        boundaries and grow. I welcome them all and value their participation, as
                        does the rest of C&J. Yes, the framework is a competition, but it doesn't
                        have to be. You can sing for evaluation only (and groups do that). Cool!
                        Just had a merger group perform in SUN last week so that they would have
                        enough to sing on stage. So in the eval we talked about what each chapter
                        could do, not about what happened on stage.



                        I think Ron does have a point. But it's human nature, not just specific to
                        barbershop. Some people (especially but definitely not exclusively men)
                        love to compete because that's in their blood. They thrive on being pushed
                        to their limits and growing and grow frustrated when others don't share that
                        same passion.



                        As I travel, I do see that districts are rethinking their convention
                        experience, trying to do more non-competition events. I salute Tom
                        Woodall's efforts in ILL - for the last 3-4 conventions, he has a "Sing with
                        a Champ" session (nothing like at Int'l). The past district champs have
                        "Burger King" crowns on. You walk up and you say - "let's sing". And you
                        sing and mix it up, always singing with at least one champ (including guys
                        with medals around their necks). Although scheduled for only an hour, it
                        goes way past that because everyone (note on everyone) is having so much
                        fun. And that's just one idea that's working.



                        Give feedback to your convention teams - what would you like to see?
                        Furthermore, take the initiative like Tom Woodall did. Create an event.



                        Cheers!



                        Kevin



                        Kevin Keller

                        kkbari@...

                        www.citynightsquartet.com

                        www.harmonize.ws/kkeller





                        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                      Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.