Lebanon Senior Singers
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Chorus became a regular part of the activity program for the Senior Center of Lebanon Valley, Inc. in 1976. The chorus was organized and directed by Peter Gamber. He was followed by Helen Schell, Tony Gerace, Lee Moyer and the current director, James H. Garrett, Jr. Jim is directing for his 13th year. The chorus rehearses every Thursday morning from 9:30 to 11:00 at the Senior Center from August through May. Membership is open to any senior center member who likes to sing generally in the traditional four part harmony. No audition is necessary. Just bring your voice and yourself to the Center at 710 Maple Street in Lebanon and join in singing. The chorus prepares two programs each year, one for the holiday season and one for the spring season. They sing these programs of 45 minutes long for retirement homes, nursing homes, church groups, senior centers, service clubs and other organizations. Volunteer contributions for these programs are always accepted graciously. The money is used to purchase the music and for the annual end of the season luncheon. The chorus numbers between 40 and 50 men and women from the area. The programs have been sung in Lebanon, Dauphin and Lancaster counties and average between 18 and 20 programs each season. The accompanist for the chorus is Sandy Leidich assisted by Linder Blazer. Nancy Hemler currently serves as the accompanist emeritus. Judy Wanfried is the chorus's business manager and Ruth Levin is the chorus treasurer. Jim can be contacted for more information or to schedule a program at 717-273-8342. Approximately three years ago, the chorus unanimously adopted "The Lebanon Senior Singers" as their official name for the chorus.
Jim is a retired music educator who taught in four Pennsylvania school districts for thirty-eight years; the last thirty-one years in the Cornwall-Lebanon School District. He also directed church choirs for forty-eight years. Jim holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Music Education from West Chester State Teachers College of Pennsylvania (now West Chester University of Pennsylvania) and a Master of Music Degree from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan. As a clarinetist, he has performed with several area bands and also performed as a tenor soloist in churches and with a secular singing group. He has taught general music, music theory, music appreciation, private instrumental lessons and directed school bands, orchestras and choruses. As stated previously, he is directing the Lebanon Senior Singers for the 13th year. He is also serving his third term as a member of the Cornwall Lebanon School Board. Jim defines music as follows: 'Music is an art form that uses patterns of measured sound and silence creatively to express emotions, feelings or abstract ideas.'