© 2016-2019 by North Carolina Harmony Brigade

NCHB 2020 :  Registration is now open!

Dear Brigader,

The Leadership Team has been hard at work since last January planning the next Rally, our 28th. Actually, the Music Commmittee started in Fall 2018 for the January 2020 rally. Once again, the Music Committee has put together a TREMENDOUS song package -- I can’t wait to start working on it.


We want to announce a few additions to the leadership teams:

  • Tim Steider, Kevin Jones, and Jonathan Riviere have joined the Membership Committee. Jonathan will have particular emphasis on the Chuck Greene Scholarship program. Actually they joined last year, but I just forgot to announce it.

  • Jason Patrick has joined the Music Committee with responsibilities relating to Mechanical Licensing.

  • Jason Ward has joined the leadership team and will be helping out in a variety of areas including preparedness checking.

We know that there was some frustration with last year’s Preparedness checking process. As part of the discussion on what kind of changes we should consider, we of course referred back to the fundamental Brigade concept: 


“A weekend where quartet men get to sing high-calibre arrangements… in quartets!.” 


So we’ve made some changes to the Weekend schedule to increase quartet singing time, ease the Preparedness check, and reduce non-singing time; highlights of which follow:

  • All of Friday afternoon (after school singouts) and evening are dedicated to core Brigading: quartet singing, tramping, getting the scholarship guys and new guests involved, etc. 

  • The Friday night quartet contest has been moved to late Saturday morning. This is big! The Atlantic Harmony Brigade has been doing this for a few years, and it has worked well for them. Why? Because we all get more singing time on Fridays! As for contest format, it is not changing. Don’t worry! I happen to know that the emcee is preparing even MORE BETTERER quips and sayings. Admittedly, the bar was not set very high last year.

  • Preparedness checking requirements have been simplified and better organized, and the amount of time given for it extended. The random song draw from a deck of cards will remain. This year, singers must complete the preparedness checking prior to the contest semifinals on Saturday morning in order to be eligible to sing in the contest. 

  • The Business meeting will be even shorter! 

  • Auditions for acts to appear on Saturday night show will take place on Saturday afternoon. 

  • The Quartet Contest final round has been moved back to late Saturday night after the show. 

 

We hope that these program changes will give us more time for what this weekend is all about. I, for one, am VERY excited about the improvements to the program.

 

Thursday night arrivals: Arriving Thursday night has become mainstream! We start off with a great relaxing supper at Beefeaters Tavern. About 45 men and some significant others in attendance. There is  room for more! There is much good singing and camaraderie — like the rest of the Rally weekend, only more of it. The Carolina Inn is extending our super discount forward to Thursday night to keep your additional costs as low as possible. This year, on the regular registration, you can optionally specify a Thursday arrival and whether you want to share a room or not. Please add $60 to your registration deposit if you’re sharing a room, or $120 if you’re going solo. Roommate requests are handled as usual as part of the whole weekend. Those who do not specify that they are coming on Thursday will only have a reservation beginning on Friday.

 

This year, the hotel will not be accepting call-in changes to room reservations. You'll have to request Bob Boone to make changes. Two words of practical advice: 1. Be sure that the person you request as a roommate is actually coming to Brigade this year, and 2. If you are planning on coming in on Thursday, please be sure your roommate is also coming in on Thursday. If not, you will likely be charged as a single on Thursday night.


The Saturday show will take place at Pinecrest High School again this year, but at an earlier time: 7pm.

 

December Final Payment: One of the complaints we've heard is that Friday registration takes so long. So this year we are asking you to make your final payment in late December. We will send a bill to you via email with the remaining balance. Several other Brigades are doing this, and not only does it help out fiscally, but you all don't have to waste valuable quartet time standing in line waiting to talk to Mr. Finance! Watch for the email in December. We understand that this might be a big problem for some of you -- just email or call Chris Frantz to discuss issues and options.
 

And if you're lucky, you will get a chance to sing with our 2019 Jon Vickers Ambassador award winner, Kevin Jones! Until the next 2020 winner is announced, he is required to sing with anyone who asks. Easy tramp sign off!

Final thoughts: Register quickly, get your music, encourage a newbie, host a run-through. See you in January..

 

I asked a cab driver in Pinehurst how to get to the Brigade. He said, “Practice, practice, practice!”

About the 2020 Brigade  Rally:

When : 17-19 January 2020
Starts Friday at 2:00 pm; Ends Sunday after breakfast (Optional activities Friday morning also available; Optional Thursday arrival for extra singing)
Where:  PINEHURST RESORT, 80 Carolina Vista Drive, Pinehurst, NC 28374  
What: Wall-to-wall quartet singing; random-draw quartet competition; Saturday night show (open to the public), school clinics
Who: Members of the North Carolina Harmony Brigade and invited guests. Youth Scholarships available!