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From: Becky Wilkins

Whew! I am home from IES. My brain is half dead! But I had such fun and learned a lot. Here's my report - I'll try to tell you personal stuff that's not on the Harmonet.

I took mostly Director classes, but squeezed in one arranging class. My teachers were people like Dale Syverson, Ann Gooch, Joni Bescos, Marge Zimmerman, and Bobbette Gantz, who are all directors, judges, and/or Certified Arrangers (some are in two or all three categories). I took a super class called "How to Teach What You Know" by Charlie Metzger, who has taught this class at Harmony College.

We were sad, and had a quiet moment to think of Carolyn Butler, who was hoping to teach at IES, yet passed away a few weeks ago from cancer.

I met and laughed with all sorts of people from all over the world: LaRee's roommate, Pat, who is Assistant Director for the St Louis Harmony Chorus - headed for International in September; Director Johann, who directs an SAI chorus in the Netherlands, and who said I talked funny (!); Certified Arranger Jo Lund, who sat by me and joined me in a lively argument in an Expression class, and who, by the way, won the International Championship a few years ago with her quartet, "City Lights"; ate lunch beside Certified Arranger June Berg - when Brenda Thomas saw her nametag, she simply gushed "You've got songs!!!"; and re-connected with Kellie White, who is a former Crystal now residing in Houston, and whose quartet, Symmetry, made the top ten at International last year - they are wonderful!

There was a huge party Saturday night where we could have margaritas, lemonade, tamales, chips & hot sauce, and jalapeno poppers. The British lady behind me in line kept saying things like, "Pardon me, but what is in this?" and "Pardon me, is this hot?" I told her to taste everything, after all she was in Texas!

I know we had to come home, but now we can bring our new stuff to our chorus, so I'm looking forward to that!

"Life's a Pitch; Then You Sing!"

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