Janesville50.5°

Blue Notes are seeking singers

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Stacy Vogel
August 29, 2008
— Music always has been a part of Helen Grandt’s life.

So when she retired from her job as a music teacher with the Milton School District, she knew she couldn’t let go.


Today, she’s teaching the joys of music to an older demographic.


For more than 10 years, Grandt, 77, has directed The Blue Notes, a 40-member choir that meets weekly at The Gathering Place and performs across southern Wisconsin.


The time has flown by for Grandt and Bob Rosenbaum, president of the choir’s new advisory board. They had to count, sometimes on their fingers, the years since Grandt founded the group (about 12) and the years Bob and his wife, Nan, have been members (nine).


“A lot of years, a lot of fun,” Bob said.


They’re hoping others find their enthusiasm infectious. The choir starts rehearing in September for its 2008-09 season, and it’s looking for new members to round out its harmonies.


The four-part choir sings a selection of Christmas carols in November and December and a variety of music in spring, from Broadway show tunes to church hymns to patriotic classics. Most of the choir members are senior citizens, but that’s certainly not a requirement, Grandt said.


Grandt started the choir with four or five members and stuck with it—choosing the music and coaching the singers every season—as it grew.


Tuesday, the Rosenbaums and Grandt recalled happy moments from performances at schools, nursing homes, hospitals and churches over the years.


“The grade schools are fun to do,” Grandt said. “The children are so bubbly and responsive.”


Once, Bob dressed up as a clown for a children’s performance.


“The children just exploded,” Nan said “I’ve never seen that kind of reaction.


Grandt encourages anyone interested in joining to come to The Blue Notes’ open house Wednesday, Sept. 10. The choir then will meet at 10:30 a.m. every Wednesday.


“I’d always say, ‘Just come and sit in, and you might like it,’” Grandt said.


That’s what happened to the Rosenbaums. A friend invited them to watch a practice years ago, and they were hooked. Today, the friend is no longer in the choir, but the Rosenbaums are still going strong.


“Everybody’s welcome,” Bob said.


IF YOU GO

What: Open house for The Blue Notes.


When: 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, Sept. 10.


Where: The Gathering Place, 715 Campus St., Milton.


More info: Call Bob Rosenbaum at (608) 884-8055.



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