Club News - Melbournaires - April 2016

Club News - Melbournaires - April 2016
Type of post: Club news
Status: Current
Date Posted: Fri, 15 Apr 2016
John Howell
    Apart from being a very hard working President, John Howell, has a somewhat glittering musical background, hence we are highlighting that career this month.
It seems that John did not take immediate advantage of his family background until much later. With a grandfather being a music teacher and the choir master / organist at Napier cathedral, an opera singing aunt, and both parents capable singers and musicians, he should have been a shoe-in for barbershop harmony.
It wasn’t until much later, however, when he was in his early forties, that John was coerced into attending an Auckland City of Sails Chorus rehearsal in 1994. After that first ear-opening experience on the risers, he hasn’t missed many chorus rehearsals since.
John became COSC VP Membership and subsequently President until 2005, during which year the chorus represented NZ for the first time in an International SPEBSQSA (now BHS) competition in Salt Lake City. It came a creditable 22nd under the inspirational musical direction of Jill Rogers.
That same year, (how he managed to find the time we’ll never know), John married his Sweet Adeline Sharon, a match he says, made in barbershop heaven. As well as being Music Coach with the Sweet Adelines Melbourne Chorus, Sharon sings baritone with the Harmony Capers quartet, and John sings bass with the quartet Boardwalk. The tradition continues with youngest daughter Leanne, a professional singer in London.
John joined the Melbournaires in 2007 and as President, was a major mover in its hosting the 2015 Melbourne convention for which he was awarded Barbershopper of the Year. He has become a real asset to the chorus, and although his loyalty can be called into question whenever our two nations confront each other in the sporting arena, we hope this likable kiwi stays around for many years to come.
Terry Phillips