We'll Miss You
As of August 22, 2018, at the SeaChordsmen rehearsal, Ted C Chamberlain's last night as director, was a time for gratitude and reflection— gratitude that I was lucky enough to be around for the whole five years, and reflection about what a spectacular barbershop education it has been for me.
Ted's intention, he told the SeaChordsmen five years ago, was to pursue the highest standards of musical excellence with a totally non-auditioned, "everyman" chorus.
This is easy to say and incredibly difficult to do. But Ted's attitude towards his singers, I learned, is "Anything I have the ability to teach, they have the ability to learn."
And boy, can he teach. In five years, the SeaChordsmen have grown dramatically not only in members but in musicianship, winning Evergreen District Most Improved Chorus in 2015 and receiving their best scores in decades.
This success was the result of Ted's highly structured, recursive approach to vocal instruction that always serves the artistic endgame. From him, I have learned an enormous amount about best practices in vocal pedagogy and a philosophy that everyone can learn to sing if they just have the right teacher.
The many loving tributes from SeaChordsmen last night emphasized Ted's teaching skill, patience, and persistence: "Thank you for pushing me"; "Thank you for believing in me"; "Thank you for helping me find my voice." We are so lucky to have had this man as our leader. Thank you, Ted!
By Elizabeth Davies