Barbershop chorus offering singing valentines

Members of the Maine-ly Music Chorus
Courtesy of Eric Stover
Members of the Maine-ly Music Chorus
Posted Jan. 28, 2011, at 10:25 p.m.

Hey, guys. Feeling guilty ’cause you have your heads wrapped around Super Bowl 45 on Sunday, Feb. 6, at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas, and you’ve not given a single thought to the fact that Valentine’s Day is Monday, Feb. 14, at home, and it probably means a lot more to the one you love than Super Bowl Sunday?

Well, members of Maine-Ly Music Chorus can get you off the hook, easily and beautifully, by giving your valentine a gift she’ll never forget.

Maine-Ly Chorus President Dan Rhodes of Orland and his fellow barbershop harmony singers have several quartets available who will sing two heartfelt songs and present your loved one with a rose and a photograph for this special day.

“We’re a friendly bunch of guys who get together to sing barbershop harmony,” Dan said, and they’d love to give that gift of joyful song to your someone special.

The cost is $35, and the available dates are Saturday, Feb. 12, Sunday, Feb. 13, and Monday, Feb. 14.

To reserve a time, you can call Rhodes at 469-2782, Russ Van Arsdale of Brewer at 989-4945, Jim Franklin of Orono at 866-8547, Harry Michaud of Lee at 738-4871, or Eric Stover of Orland at 944-8017.

Reminder fliers also can be found at several businesses in the area, Dan said.

Just so my male readers don’t feel singled out, I remind my female readers that giving a singing valentine to that special man is equally appropriate.

I also will point out that many women, like me, have their own head wrapped around the Super Bowl — although not as tightly as it would have been if the New England Patriots or the New York Giants were involved — and I’ll bet dollars to doughnuts that more female sports fans have begun their valentine shopping than have their male counterparts.

Dan and I discussed the geographical area that the group could cover for this special valentine, and he figures it would probably be somewhere from Lincoln to Mount Desert Island to Stockton Springs.

The site just has to be close enough that the group can conveniently make the trip, Dan said.

As we talked, it occurred to me that this would be a wonderful gift for members of our military, who are perhaps stationed away from home, to send to loved ones who are keeping the home fires burning.

For those of you who’ve not been a recipient of this gift or have had the pleasure of witnessing a presentation, I can tell you it really is a lot of fun.

I remember what a good time we at the Bangor Daily News had one special Valentine’s Day when we sneaked downstairs, lined up along the hall and poured out into the reception area as someone fetched a very surprised Nancy Golding, whose husband, Peter Golding, had arranged a singing valentine for her.

It was loads of fun to share the joy that simple gift brought Nancy on that special day.

Maine-Ly Music Chorus, founded in 1972, is open to men of all ages and vocations who love to sing barbershop harmony.

The group meets Monday evenings at the Bangor Parks and Recreation building, 647 Main St.

It is a chapter of the Northeast District of the Barbershop Harmony Society, formerly known as the Society for the Preservation and Encouragement of Barbershop Quartet Singing in America.

The chorus performs a major show in the fall or spring and makes other appearances throughout the year.

Its next performance is 2 p.m. Saturday, April 30, at Minsky Recital Hall at the University of Maine in Orono.

Any male who sings a cappella in four parts (bass, baritone, lead and tenor) is welcome to join, and more information is available by calling one of the members listed.

In the meantime, anyone can enjoy a little barbershop for Valentine’s Day!

Joni Averill, Bangor Daily News, P.O. Box 1329, Bangor 04402; javerill@bangordailynews.com; 990-8288.

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