On the weekend of March 9-11 Main Street headed up to Gadsden, Alabama to compete in an out-of-District preliminary contest for the upcoming International convention in Portland, OR.
The weekend began on Thursday night as Mike drove up from Orlando and spent the night in Atlanta. Mike had reserved a room ahead of time and from the website it looked like a nice, clean hotel. Upon entering the hotel the lobby looked very respectable. However, once he took the elevator to his floor it was clear this hotel was in dire need of repair. It was bad! Fortunately, he was only staying there to sleep for the night and head out the next morning. The icing on the cake was the elevator inspection note which said it was two months overdue for inspection. Nice.
Tony, Roger and Myron all flew into Birmingham, AL and rented a car for the 45 minute drive to Gadsden. Mike had a two hour drive from Atlanta. One of the biggest surprises was crossing a path of destruction where a tornado had passed through a year ago. Very sobering moment. Check out some of the pictures below.
The quartet got together in the afternoon for some rehearsal time. Mike had been dealing with a nasty cold all week and was concerned about his vocal abilities. Once the quartet had warmed up Mike's voice was in pretty good shape. After an hour long warmup the quartet headed to Ruby Tuesdays for some dinner, then went back to the hotel to dress in costume.
Backstage the quartet was very relaxed and feeling comfortable for the competition. We did a few run throughs before hitting the stage. When we were announced the first thing that immediately hit us all was how HOT the stage was. It was like a furnace blowing hot air on the quartet. We opened the first set with one of our favorite songs to sing, Apple Blossom Time. At the end of the tag we received an immediate standing ovation from the DIX District audience. WOW! What a response and warm welcome. The second song was Fit As A Fiddle, a tune which requires an extradordinary amount of stamina due to both the song's arrangement and the choreo routine. We finished the song to yet another standing ovation. Walking offstage the quartet felt really good about our hit. It was decided to celebrate by going to the local Waffle House and eat some yummy waffles!
After WH we drove back to the hotel and hung out in the hospitality room sponsored by our friends, A Mighty Wind. The room was loaded with food and drinks. We socialized for awhle before going back to our rooms for some good sleep.
Saturday was a slow day. Took our time waking up. In the mid-day we drove to the chorus contest and watched the last five choruses compete as well as support our friend Clay Hine and his chorus, Atlanta Vocal Project sing at the end of the contest. Afterwards we went back to the hotel for some singing and another trip to Ruby Tuesdays for dinner.
The Saturday evening contest was great. The quartet sang Wait Til The Sun Shines Nellie and finished the set with Coney Island Washboard Roundelay. Another ovation from the audience helped complete a really fun competing experience in the Dxie District. About an hour later the announcements were made and Main Street was thrilled to qualify with one of our highest scores to date. Our evaluation session following the contest was extremely positive and motivating. We feel as though we are headed on the right track and making good decisions with our music and performance choices.
The quartet sang at a few afterglow rooms then went to celebrate our qualification by eating a late night dinner at Waffle House! When we got back to the hotel we walked by the fitness center. Tony suggested we shoot a video wishing Joe Connelly a Happy Birthday. Once we filmed that segment Tony thought it might be fun to film another Main Street silent film! We shot a bunch of silly moments with no real story idea in place. It took a few days before Mike had an idea to make a film about the quartet getting in shape for an upcoming contest. The competed film can be found on our website. The film was submitted to the Silent Film Director website and was voted as Best Film of the Week by their judges and runner-up for Best Film of the Month in March.
Roger, Tony and Myron had very early flights out of Birmingham on Sunday morning so they decided not to go to bed. They were all home by 10am. Mike hit the road around 10am and twelve hours later pulled into his driveway in Orlando.
The quartet had a lot of fun up in Gadsden, AL and were thankful to both the Sunshine and Dixie Districts who were gracious enough to let us compete. We look forward to upcoming rehearsals as we prepare for the International contest in July!