Great Land Notes         






The Great Land Sounds Chorus

Fairbanks, Alaska










ditorial:  No politician worth his campaign contributions would ever pass up an opportunity to mount an available soap box.  The same sentiment applies to newspaper editors – and it may even be true of newsletter editors as well.  Too bad.  I’m climbing up there anyway.

It is increasingly obvious the winds of change are blowing.  It is getting to the point where being a member of The Great Land Sounds is (gasp!) really kind of fun.  Last month’s editorial laid the blame for this unnatural condition squarely at the feet of our resident Pie-man, but now I’m not so sure. 


We are suffering the rigors of sectionals and riser time during rehearsal.  People are actually learning their music.   It could be the malady is spreading, as evidenced by good turnouts for such unglamorous activities as load-in and cleanup. There were even some unhealthy periods of camaraderie noted during show week. 


And to make matters worse, it seems that the recent fair singout and show performances may result in several guests showing up for rehearsals.  Could there be some potential new members in the offing?  Heaven forbid!  I guess there’s nothing to be done but endure until things get back to normal. 


However, it is kind of nice to proclaim, “It’s GREAT to be a barbershopper!” and really mean it.





ummer Show:  (Huge sigh of relief…)  The summer show is behind us!  Now we can get ready for Christmas.


If “having fun” is the yardstick of achievement, the show was an unqualified success.  Our audiences seemed to have a good time both nights and there was a definite upbeat flavor to the whole production, from load-in to cleanup.  It was also good to see visitors from afar, including expatriate members of the GLS and members from chapters as far away as upstate New York. 


Special recognition is due several people for efforts above and beyond the call –



Kudos to all for a successful show!




resident's Corner:  What a great show!  It is the end result of a lot of effort by every one who participated.  Numerous compliments were heard from people who attended.  Because of that, I am writing a letter for the “Thank You” column in the newspaper to let our friends and families and fans know how much we appreciate them.  I hope that every one of you had as much fun as I did.

            Bruce Lougheed




chedule Items:  It looks as though we may get a little breather for a few weeks, though there are a couple of major events coming up.  The first is the Evergreen District convention in Anchorage on October 4 – 5.  We will be mic testers for the chorus competition on Saturday and we need to have our Alaskan numbers polished up and ready.


The other event is the joint Christmas show with The Fairbanks Frontier Chorus.  The ladies have the artistic lead this year but there is still plenty for us to do.  We need to select both chorus and quartet music as well as representatives for the joint show committee.  Sets, advertising and promotion and ticket sales are just a few areas that will need some effort on our part.


There are a couple of traditional singout dates coming up that we have done in recent years – anthems for the Bonspiel at the Fairbanks Curling Club and the Top of the World Classic.  If you have ideas or requests for additional singouts, pass them along to our Program VP, Bob Miller.





raft Corner:  Craft Lesson 4 – Altering Notes (Part 1)


If every piece of music were written with the same tempo and in the same key and time signature, it would make for some pretty boring music.  One way to increase the variety in music is to alter the basic notes, both in duration and pitch.  Let’s look at the time factor first.


Sometimes a composer wants to make a note sound for longer period than a standard note’s duration, but not as long as the next longer note.  For instance, he might want a note to sound for the length of three quarter notes - longer than a half note, but not as long as a whole note.  There are a couple of ways to show this longer than normal duration note.


If extending the duration of a particular note does not extend it past the end of a measure, it may be shown as a standard length note with a dot placed immediately to the right, as the half note in measure 1 of Figure 1. 
















The dot means it is to be extended in duration one and one-half times the normal time of a half note alone.  The half note in standard time is sounded for the duration of two quarter notes, so a dotted half note will sound for the length of three quarter notes.  Similarly, a dotted quarter note sounds for one and a half times the length of the quarter note or for the duration of three eighth notes.  Notice that measure 1 is completed with a quarter note so the total duration of the measure is still four beats.


Ø       At no time can there be more beats in a single measure than specified in the time signature. 


Does that mean a note cannot be extended past a measure line?  No.  It just is done a slightly different way.  Measures 2 and 3 illustrate the method, as do measures 4 and 5.  A note representing the desired extra time is placed in the next measure and is connected by a tie across the measure line.  Therefore, the half note in measure 3 is tied to the quarter note in measure 4 and is sounded for three beats, just like the dotted half note in measure 1.  Similarly, the whole note in measure 4 is tied to a half note in measure 5 and is sounded for six continuous beats.


Another way to spiff up the rhythm is the use of triplets.  With this application of timing, three notes are sounded in the time usually taken up by two regular beats of music.  A triplet is shown by the symbol shown in Figure 2.  The notes look like quarter notes barred together, but the addition of the tie and the numeral “3” indicates this combination is a triplet.











In Part 2 of this session, we will look at altering notes in pitch and the intervals used to separate individual notes.




uote of the Month:  “The most wasted day of all is that in which we have not laughed.

                - Sebastian-Roch Nicolas Chamfort

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