Women's choir blooms to make beautiful music
To learn more
Prospective members or anyone wishing to have The Daylilies perform should call Jane Mishleau at (608) 752-8138 or Teeny Adamany at (608) 743-0410.
JANESVILLE Since the group's founding five years ago, The Daylilies has blossomed into a large arrangement of blended voices.
The idea for the women's chorus, which sings four-part harmony a cappella, was planted by three friends with a love of singing.
"We wanted to sing and hoped we would pick up members along the way," said Jane Mishleau.
She and Teeny Adamany, Janesville, and Peg Elver, Madison, founded The Daylilies.
"We only had seven people. Now, we have 42 members," Mishleau said.
The growth doesn't surprise Mishleau.
Joining doesn't require trying out or paying membership dues. It requires only a love of singing.
Most members are retired women who travel to Janesville from Madison, Elkhorn, Delavan, Brodhead, Footville and Milton for weekly, two-hour rehearsals in the choir room at First Lutheran Church. Syrl Mandel, who has professional experience directing and singing, directs the chorus.
"Not only can she teach, but she can sing. Her whole world is music and involvement in it. We're very fortunate to have her and two assistant directors," Mishleau said.
The Daylilies perform twice a month at nursing homes, private parties, funerals and public settings.
Although members rehearse with sheet music, they don't use it when they perform contemporary, traditional, holiday, modern, spiritual or patriotic songs, she said.
"You're always learning something new and being challenged, but I don't find it stressful. I like to learn new things," Mishleau said.
"(Learning) a new piece of music. I get high on that—a beautiful song with a beautiful melody with lyrics that touch you. To me, it can't get much better than that. But I love music," she said.
Mishleau said singing with The Daylilies is a wonderful way to spend leisure time.
"Everybody needs a passion other than everyday living, and this is a wonderful way to do it. You get a lot of gratification in the feedback when you go out and perform," she said.
Carolyn Sime, Milton, finds it rewarding to perform with The Daylilies.
"I just really enjoy it," she said, "and have found it to be fun."
The choir's newest member, Ruth Coker, Footville, joined The Daylilies last fall.
"During my first performance at a nursing home, I saw a resident sing along and a person without an expression begin to smile," Coker said. "That touched me. The performance is enriching."