The Sounds of Aloha had a grand time cheering for one of our sister choruses, Honolulu Blend Show Chorus, and its newest quartet, Bella Makana, at their April 8, 2017, Friends and Family Night. The event gave the groups a chance to practice their compeition performance packages before an enthusiastic live audience as they prepared to travel to Phoenix for the Spring Regional Convention and Competition of Region 21 Golden West of Sweet Adelines International, April 20-23.
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The Sounds of Aloha Chorus ended its weekly rehearsal a little early on February 16, 2017, so we could have a special send-off for a member who has left his mark on barbershop, nationally and locally. Ralph Brandt and his wife Robbie are off to San Antonio this month, and we wish them all the best.
Ralph sang bass in one of the foremost powerhouse quartets of the 1950s, the Play-Tonics, from Teaneck, New Jersey. You can read all about the Play-Tonics, who were the 1956 International Silver Medallists, here.
There were smiles and tears aplenty February 11-14, 2017, as quartets from the Sounds of Aloha Chorus fanned out across Oahu to deliver Singing Valentines. This year's recipients were both women and men, young and old, and were found from East Honolulu to Kaneohe to Ko'olina to Schofield Barracks and Haleiwa. They included spouses, significant others, friends, colleagues, neighbors, teachers in front of their classes, the U.H.
SOA was proud and honored to be able to share music of the World War II era and other patriotic songs at a gathering on December 6, 2016, of U.S. Air Force and other military service personnel and families to honor Army Air Corps survivors of the attack on Pearl Harbor 75 years ago. We were doubly pleased that we were able to take part in this event, held at the Historic Hickam Officers' Club at the mouth of Pearl Harbor, with our sisters-in-song, the Honolulu Blend Show Chorus.
December 4, 2016, saw the Sounds of Aloha Chorus roll out the holiday season early this year by returning to Windward Community College's Paliku Theatre for another original musical comedy. "The Elf Who Saved Christmas" followed on last year's big holiday hit, "Santa Needs an Ukulele!" This year's show told the story of how one of Santa's elves, Freddie, inadvertently saves Christmas from the scheming of a vengeful witch who had been downsized due to North Pole budget cuts -- and of how the budget situation is salvaged by a plan to build a fixed rail system to connect the North Pole to Tokyo.
The setting was intimate, informal, and not necessarily the first place one might expect to hear voices raised in harmony! But thanks to generosity of the Friends of the Library of Hawai'i, on November 27, 2016, patrons of Kaimuki Public Library were treated to a musical commemoration of the 75th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor. Master of Ceremonies Tim Hopkins tied the offering of 1940s and patriotic songs together with historical, musical, and cultural developments before and after the attack, while encouraging the audience to learn more about this central event in Hawaii and world history.
The Sounds of Aloha Chorus had a very successful and long overdue reunion with the larger Barbershop Harmony Society (BHS) last week at the BHS Far Western District Contest and Convention in Riverside, California. From October 13 through 16, SOA members experienced all the talent and camaraderie of our brothers-in-song from California, Arizona, and Nevada. It was the first time SOA had performed on the Mainland in a decade.
The spaghetti dinner fundraiser is a time-honored tradition among all kinds of small community non-profits and religious communities. It's affordable, and it features what for many people is good, kid-friendly comfort food. But the Sounds of Aloha Chorus 2016 Cabaret on September 24, 2016, might have raised the expectations bar for an event like this.
The Sounds of Aloha Chorus was honored to continue its long tradition of contributing a big part of the musical program for the Mayor's Annual Memorial Day Ceremony at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (Punchbowl or Pūowaina). This year's ceremony was again well attended by military, governmental, and diplomatic dignitaries and numerous veterans' and other civic organizations, as well as by families of those who have sacrificed for the nation. The program also included the Royal Hawaiian Band, a flyover by the Hawaii Air National Guard, and speeches by Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell and the U.S. Navy's first Asian-American Admiral, Harry B.