The Blenders

The Blenders
Type of post: Club news
Status: Current
Date Posted: Thu, 27 Oct 2016

We would be remiss if we didn't start by thanking Brian Bleakley and his team at Hunter Harmony together with the BHA team for their hard work in organising a highly enjoyable and seamlessly run convention. We would also like to congratulate everyone who performed in any category for their contribution.

For The Blenders and our various groups it was also highly successful:

A gold medal with Blindside and silver with Upgrade in the open quartets category.

First place for The Blenders Youth Chorus may not seem like an achievement in a field of only one but there was plenty of achievement in just being there!

A third place bronze for The Blenders was a first medal for quite a number of our singers, including ten for whom this was their first convention.

The Chorus Breakfast, held before the chorus competition and a tradition that dates back to 1999, was the opportunity to award Life Membership to our popular President, Doug Goetze. The 107 attendees of the breakfast warmly supported this award.

We once again sang at the convention church service which we have enjoyed participating in for many years. This gave us another opportunity to hear Forefront who of course sounded fantastic singing in church. A big thanks to Don Boyrgoyne for organizing this.

The intensity of a Barbershop Convention allowed our use of the Facebook Messenger app to come into its own. This app, the use of which we had been trialling prior to Convention really came in to its own as a fast and fun communication tool between all our members.

Now back to reality, we are looking at the future and have kicked off with a combined membership drive/celebratory rehearsal which was attended by over forty guests, many of whom are potential new members. As the largest BHA chorus with a current membership of over 80 we are constantly exploring avenues outside the barbershop community for new members to replace those that have moved on for whatever reason.

We will of course carry on recruiting through our usual avenues:

  • Through our allied groups: Blenders Youth Chorus, Serotonin (Griffith university mixed student choir) and AB Patterson College choirs. We actively promote and encourage graduation from these groups to The Blenders.
  • From registrants to the Voices in Paradise workshops which are run twice a year
  • Via interest generated from gigs, community events, personal approaches, and newspaper articles.

 "Business as usual" means gigs are rolling in fast. The Thursday after convention we had a gig at Jupiter’s Hotel and Convention Centre to open a Seniors Forum hosted by Steven Ciobo MP. The enthusiastic audience of around 800 looked like recruitment material to our President who is always on the prowl for opportunities.

We are eagerly anticipating The Blenders Awards Night, a tradition, dating back to 1996 has this year been rebranded as the Blenders & BYC Presentation Dinner and will occur on November 5th. The growth and success of our youth programmes through The Blenders Youth Chorus and its quartets has been rewarded by equal billing for this event: why not, these young men win most of the awards anyway!
With our AGM fast approaching the Blenders are once again looking to include some new and some of our young members on Executive. With this in mind, last year we expanded the Executive to 16 members which, rather than being unmanageable has led to a new energy in the Executive with new ideas flowing through.

Our own club magazine "Blenders Herald", which has been produced in various formats since 1995 has been re-vamped for 2016 with a new editorial team and is now issued electronically to all members. Focussing on the fun side of chorus life, each issue is eagerly anticipated by all members.

Roy Tomkinson
Assistant Secretary
The Blenders