WHO ARE THE HARMONIZERS?
The Harbor City Harmonizers is a men’s a Capella chorus, performing music in the barbershop style; entertaining audiences in Melbourne and Brevard County since 1989. The Harbor City Harmonizers is the performing chorus of the Melbourne Chapter of the Society for the Preservation and Encouragement of Barbershop Quartet singing in America.
We are an enthusiastic group of singers with a wide variety of backgrounds who are consistently striving to improve our singing and vocal techniques which improves our overall performance. Vocal instruction and learning of music theory is part of every rehearsal, led by our most capable director, Gretchen Lux.
WHAT WE DO!
The Harbor City Harmonizers has been promoting and encouraging vocal harmony and good fellowship among its members for almost 30 years. We actively educate our members and the public in the appreciation of barbershop music. We initiate, promote and participate in charitable projects that educate the youth of Brevard County to sing music in the Barbershop style.
REHEARSALS/CHAPTER MEETINGS/WHAT TO EXPECT
We welcome visitors and encourage those that are curious about who we are, what we do and what is barbershop a cappella harmony, to come and check us out. Our rehearsals begin with vocal and physical warm-ups, yes, physical. No, not push-ups or anything real strenuous, just enough to get our bodies, lungs and vocal chords working.
We have a rather large repertoire of songs we sing and are continually working to improve them as well as continuing to learn new songs. Our talented director, Gretchen Lux, is an exceptionally good vocal teacher and music educator that is constantly improving our singing. We have all the music we sing in guest books for our visitors.
Our activities are numerous. We like to perform, compete, encourage quartet singing, have an active youth outreach program and have wonderful educational opportunities and experiences.
You may be asked to sing a portion of a familiar song, like “Row, Row, Row Your Boat,” to place your voice in the proper part. If you already know what part you sing, then an audition will not be required.
The Harmonizers have performed for all sorts of functions since 1989. These functions include Special Birthdays, Anniversaries, Retirement parties, Valentines, Christmas Parties, Health Care Facilities, special business or Organization functions, you name it, we can do it. We are available for most any group. Just contact us and we will make the necessary arrangements.
Singing Valentines is among our most popular performances for quartets and on occasion the chorus. We send out quartets to sing two love songs to a special person and with the songs is a red rose, a box of candy and a greeting card, all for a small fee. If you are a singer, yes, a Harmonizer, you too can be delivering these singing valentines. It’s a real fun thing to do, a blast.
The Harmonizers have held Christmas Shows just about every year since 1989. In 2004 our Christmas show was Called “Sounds of the Season” and we have been using that show name ever since. This year it will be “SOS XIV”
The Sunshine District, of which the Harmonizers are members, holds district conventions/competitions in the spring and again in the fall. For the past several years we have held our conventions at the Orlando Marriott Airport hotel.
Meet Our Director: Gretchen Lux
Six years ago, fortune smiled upon the Harbor City Harmonizers when Gretchen Lux agreed to become the Music Director of the chorus. Her mastery of music education and performance encompasses string instruments—violin and viola– as well as voice.
Graduating Cum Laude, she holds a B.S. in Music Education from the Pennsylvania State University. She then completed additional studies in voice with Dr. Ruth Drucker, Peabody Conservatory and instruction on violin and viola with Linda Utz of the Brevard Symphony Orchestra. She currently studies voice with Mark Baker, formerly of the New York City Metropolitan Opera.
Gretchen’s 20 year career in the U.S. Navy aptly “prepared” her to mold a group of music-loving guys into a choral unit. She served as Unit Leader for the U.S. Navy Band Sea Chanters and was the first woman to achieve the rank of Master Chief in the chorus’ 45-year history. She also performed duties as Division Officer, Tour Manager, and Women’s Enlisted Representative.
At her former residences, she provided private violin and voice lessons and continues to do so here in Melbourne. She also taught middle school general music and chorus. She currently serves as music director at a local church where she directs adult and children choruses and ensembles, and designs and implements music and liturgy for religious services including weddings, holiday services and events. If that, and serving as the Harbor City Harmonizers director, was not enough to keep her busy, she is also a member of the Melbourne Chamber Music Society where she assists with volunteer management and hospitality.
The Harbor City Harmonizers are extremely fortunate and thankful to have Gretchen as our director.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
2017 Board of Directors
President: Dan Brinkmann
Secretary: Sterling Warner
Treasurer: David Richards
Immediate Past President: Mark Milligan
VP Member Services: Charles Goodrich
VP Music and Performance: Mark Amaral
VP Marketing and Publicity: Eric Nelson
VP Programs: Matt Brock
VP Communications: Richard Muir
Member at Large: Robert Johnston
Member at Large: Erin Thomas
Music Director: Gretchen Lux
2017 Music Committee
VP Music and Performance Mark Amaral
Director of Music Gretchen Lux
Asst. Music Director Dan Brinkmann
Asst. Music Director Mark Milligan
Music Librarian Steve Gardner
Bass Section Leader Gretchen Lux
Tenor Section Leader Dan Brinkmann
Baritone Section Leader Mark Milligan
Lead Section Leader Geno List
At Large-Publications Robert Johnston
Secretary Sterling Warner
Treasurer David Richards