The global pandemic we heard about eventually made its way to North America and turned our world upside down. I am sure I’m not alone in saying I was in shock during the first month, adjusting to the new rules of contact, mask-wearing and the disappointing news that rehearsals and singing with my Harmony, Inc. sisters would have to cease.
Then something happened. Action! Determination! Creativity! Ingenuity!
Our dedicated Board of Directors met for hours, sorting out just how the new COVID world would impact our members, our craft, our conventions and contests. They agonized over difficult decisions, all with member health and safety being paramount.
Chapter music leaders quickly learned how to navigate Zoom rehearsals and structured them to serve as check-ins, social events, education and yes, singing opportunities! Invitations were extended to coaches and other chapters to join in, providing a wonderful way to meet other barbershoppers.
Chapter leaders checked in on their members by phone and email, organized car drive-bys when members needed to be cheered up, dropped off gifts of homemade bread and reduced chapter dues, all of which demonstrated kindness, compassion and solidarity.
Volunteers stepped forward to provide virtual workshops in what was eventually named THE HIVE (Harmony, Inc. Virtual Education) by our brilliant Communications Team. Harmony members could step into these virtual classrooms live or visit Harmony’s website to view the recordings at their leisure.
Gifts of free music appeared in our publications and we responded as if we received a cool beverage on a hot, humid day. Yes, we were thirsty for music!
Amazing video performances were planned so that we could sing together, once the solo pieces were blended by technological geniuses!
The power of positive thinking! After the initial shock dissipated Harmony members didn’t give up. They didn’t say, “This is too hard.” They said, “We can do this! We’ll have to learn new ways but we can still be Harmony. Stronger.”
THANK YOU for being there, for Harmony, Inc. and each other!
Submitted by Kim Meechan
Director of Membership