Well, didn’t we have a great time in Newcastle? What a great Convention! A huge vote of thanks to Keith Thornton, Trevor Rootes, Brian Bleakley and the team from Novatones and Eastern Region. And our visitors from the USA – Forefront – Drew, Kevin, Aaron and Brian, and our judges – Steve, Joe, Dusty and Tony – a nicer bunch of blokes you’ll never meet, not forgetting Henrietta and Michael from New Zealand, and Linda and Vicki from Australia!
Congratulations to all who competed. Your contribution to the festival atmosphere was greatly valued. We had four fun filled days of harmony at the highest level.
And now, on with the show! Next year’s Convention is already creeping us on us with the special deal of being a PanPac, and featuring quartets and choruses from New Zealand, Japan, west coast USA etc. We’re really looking forward to being in the brand new Sydney Convention Centre at Darling Harbour, which should be a blast.
Your Council continues to work behind the scenes for you. Every Councillor had a role in running the Convention, or assisting in some way, and we’re also working to make our organisation run smoother and more efficiently for every member’s benefit.
A few Council decisions and actions of late, which you may be interested in were the approval of a Code of Ethics, a Policy on International Subsidies, application for Deductible Gift Recipient (DGR) status for BHA (still in progress), Life Membership Criteria, Champions Code of Conduct – “What Do We Expect of You?”, and modifications to Standing Orders concerning contests, to name a few.
We held a well-attended BHA Forum in Newcastle, and the topics covered included: the cost of the welcome dinner and the quality of food served, associate members (i.e. females) being able to sing in mixed groups, the size criteria for chorus awards (currently 16 and less = small, 17-30 = medium, >30 = large), the excellence of the judges and evaluations, sharing ideas complied from Club of the Year entries and sharing these with all Clubs, marketing of barbershop (and BHA) to schools, coaching next year, leadership training for Clubs and MDs, the concept of a “festival” rather than a “convention”, availability of Council meeting minutes to members, music copyright and publishing issues, World Voice Day and World Barbershop Quartet Day, communication with members at large, and arrangement of a modern song to become a polecat. While the Council answered a lot of the questions at the Forum, we will follow-up some. In addition, in the next edition of In Harmony we will give a fuller account of the Forum, the topics discussed and the answers provided.