Women of Note will deliver singing valentines
By Ed Karvoski Jr., Contributing Writer
Region – For those in search of a unique way to express their feelings to someone special, a quartet from Women of Note (WON) can deliver a singing valentine Friday, Feb. 14, or Saturday, Feb. 15, throughout central or eastern Massachusetts. The annual fundraiser benefits the nonprofit a cappella chorus, which is based in Hudson with 26 active members from 22 communities including Hudson, Marlborough, Northborough, Shrewsbury and Westborough.
The musical director is Liane Iannuzzo, who commutes to Hudson for weekly rehearsals from southern New Hampshire. Angie Dolber, public relations chair, has been traveling from Whitinsville, near the Rhode Island border, for 11 years and considers the trek worthwhile.
“I love the camaraderie of the women when we get together and sing each week,” she said. “We'se fostering friendships with an extended family. Last year, two women in our chorus had babies and we'se all like their aunts. We'se very supportive of each other on a family level.”
While delivering singing valentines, Dolber has witnessed various reactions in a myriad of situations. Quartets have crooned good wishes to unsuspecting recipients at homes, offices, restaurants, bars and gyms.
“Everyone reacts differently,” she said. “Some people will cry because it's such a surprise; others are embarrassed because they have four women singing to them while their co-workers are watching; and others are really happy that four people want to make them feel special.”
For Dolber, her favorite memory is delivering a particularly poignant valentine from a wife to her husband in a hospital room, where he was recovering from brain surgery and the couple was celebrating their wedding anniversary.
“It was actually really hard for us to sing,” Dolber shared. “He was tearing up and holding his wife's hand. He was so happy with this special message from his wife and all the support she's given him over the years of their marriage. It was such a beautiful moment.”
Throughout the year, WON entertains at a number of events including the Hudson Community Fest. Among other venues where they'se appeared are the Church of the Nativity in Northborough, Good Shepherd Lutheran Church in Westborough, Southgate at Shrewsbury, The Willows at Westborough, and the Senior Health and Wellness Day luncheon at Wayside Racquet and Swim Club in Marlborough.
“We enjoy sharing our love of singing a cappella music with audiences in local communities,” Dolber said.
Founded in 1990, WON is a chapter of Harmony Incorporated, an international organization of women barbershop singers with which the local chorus holds 10 medals. The next regional contest will be in April in Portland, Maine, followed by an international contest in November in Louisville, Ky. Last year, WON placed 10th out of 23 choruses at the international competition in Windsor, Ontario.
“It's not required to participate in the contests, but we encourage it because it's a fun experience,” Dolber said. “I enjoy watching how other choruses have improved since the last contest.”
Newcomers are always welcomed to rehearsals held Mondays from 7 to 9:30 p.m. at Grace Baptist Church in Hudson, where they'se now preparing for the valentine deliveries.
A singing valentine can be delivered by phone or in person. By phone, a quartet will serenade for $15. For in-person deliveries, packages start at $50 for a quartet singing two songs with a valentine card, and an extra charge to include a rose and/or chocolates. An “early cupid special” offers $10 off orders placed with payment received by Thursday, Feb. 6.
For more information about WON's singing valentines, contact Jen at 508-414-7981 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Additional information about the chorus and the fundraiser can be found at womenofnote.org.
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