Kathy's Korner‎ > ‎


posted Oct 18, 2017, 5:48 AM by OregonSpirit   [ updated Oct 18, 2017, 4:53 PM ]
There are so very many things in life for which I'm thankful - my son, my health, family, travels, and, of course, my music.  I was fortunate to have been born into a family of musicians so my house was always filled with the sounds of piano, banjo, and lots of singing!  When I joined Sweet Adelines in January of 1971, I had no idea how big an impact it would have on my life, or that it would eventually lead me to a group of women who would become Oregon Spirit Chorus.  YOU have given me opportunities to grow as a musician and a leader and I want to say THANK YOU.  

I've experienced two fabulous and timely educational experiences this year:  International Educational Symposium (IES) in August and the International Convention last week -- and I'm headed to Redding, CA this Friday for an exciting weekend with all the Directors in Region 12, led by Jan Carley, author of "Harmony From the Inside Out".  It seems as if these workshops have been written and timed specifically for me and what I have been needing as a Director.  I've gained lots of new tools that I'm definitely going to utilize, but more importantly, I've regained my PASSION; I've rediscovered the ME that I had lost for awhile. Many of you are aware that I've had a difficult year and did a lot of soul-searching about whether I was able and willing to continue directing OSC. I've experienced frustration, self-doubt, sadness, anger, and even some apathy - all of which are pretty foreign to my usual positive demeanor. These are the same things that some of you have struggled with at times (yep, I'm really just like you).  But I've also recently experienced admiration and pride for the activities that I witnessed leading up to our workshop and show. I saw a tremendous amount of teamwork and sisterhood; it brought out the very best in each of you as you saw each other's needs and filled them.  You brought your entire breadth of knowledge to the projects and we gave the students and teachers an amazing workshop, and the audience an entertaining show that nobody will ever forget. 

We've all gone through tough times in our lives with our families, careers, and more - and we've all made decisions about how much of our time will be spent on our musical pursuits. I've had to ask myself very difficult personal questions, and I've found the answers through the workshops I've attended this year due to YOUR SUPPORT.  These workshops have fed my musical soul in ways that is nearly impossible to adequately describe.  So when I saw the core values that you chose last night, I thought to myself "How did I get so lucky to have these women in my life?"   I did the exercise, too, and I'd like to share the core value statements that I created before your session together:

1.  Strive for high QUALITY singing skills.
2.  Share the JOY of singing with everyone.
3.  Reinforce a personal COMMITMENT to OSC.
4.  Create INNOVATION in our performances.

One of my concerns for the past several months has been whether we were all in alignment as to vision, goals, and values.  The exercise that Elaine Rosenberg expertly led you through last night shows that we are on the same path and that we are once again aligned towards common core values. These will become goals, and then the goals will become action items aimed at reaching them.  THANK YOU for being the women you are: talented, forward-thinking team players, who are eager to learn and grow, ready to dig deeper for a personal enrichment that will be shared with all the other women in this quite remarkable group!

You have filled me with much-needed retrospection and personal growth and renewed energy and anticipation. I am eternally grateful.

With so much love, Kathy

PS:  I'll be sending emails with the plan for next week (Oct 24th Christmas Chorus Kickoff), as well as a summary of last night's session to those who missed it.