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From: Annette Gary

There were 1400 Sweet Adelines in attendance--800 more than International expected...the presentors were fantastic. They included members from various international quartets (including Rumors) and international Board members. It was great!

The following PW folks attended IES...Marilyn Dickey, Marva Hughes, Annette Gary, Becky Wilkins, LaRee Eckman, Kayla Fuller, Tracy Fuller, Emily McNeese, Brenda Thomas.

There were several tracks that various folks took. Emily, Tracy, Kayla, Annette took the chorus track. Each IES chorus had a specifically assigned director (all of whom had taken their own choruses to international in the past) learning a package of 2 songs complete with choreography. The directors were fantastic. It gave us all a chance to work with members of other choruses and learn our music, etc. in a very "quick" manner. At the conclusion of the conference, the choruses performed in a show for all participants.

Other tracks included the arrangers track, visual track (for folks) interested in choreography, Directors track, vocal production track, quartet track, and other general topics like "how to energize your sound", "how to sell the song", "tune in to intune", etc.--things that members need to be a really good chorus. The vocal production track and the general topics would be *great* for anyone, especially for new members.

Rumors performed every day at the opening session (PS - their new fantastic CD is out and will be available at international in August--if anyone wants one, let me know. I could collect $ and would be happy to bring some back for ya'll). For me, just being able to be a part of the chorus was worth the registration $$.

Also, IES marked the first "Rising Star contest" for women 25 years of age and under. The winners were "Dazzling Diamonds"--a really great group. There were 3 quartets from Nottingham, England--one of them "In the Spotlight" got 2nd. Since the future of our organization depends on having and recruiting younger members--this was a momentous occasion!

We stayed in the dorms which were pretty nice--there was, however, *ALOT* of walking up and down hills and stairs, back and forth to get to classes--this seemed to be quite a problem for some of those who had difficulty getting around.

- there were several men there (most were directors), but I think it would have been great for anyone who is singing barbershop!

Annette Gary

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