Everything is quiet until the voices rise in unison.
With his hands waving, the animated conductor leads
the singers to fill the auditorium with music.
Ronald Burrichter conducted the Men's Glee Club 75th
anniversary performance Saturday evening at the annual
spring concert presented by the UF School of Music.
Burrichter brought together alumni and students to perform,
in addition to the regular Men's Glee Club and Women's Chorale
The alumni were excited and a little nervous
coming back to UF. Before they met with the
current members for the first time on Saturday,
the alumni had only received a tape of the music they
would be singing.
"I was a little nervous at first, but I have had
fun all day," said Lawson Spare, class o 1961,
a retiree who was in the Glee Club all four years of
his time at UF.
Alumni were able to reminisce about
their days in the club and see how their experiences
compare to members now.
"We had a good time then and today," Spare said.
"The members had us intermingled with them during
the performance and did their best to involve us.
I'm ticked to death that I came."
Current members enjoyed meeting the alumni because
of what they learned from them.
"They had some great stories.
They have a tremendous amount of history that adds
to it," sophomore David Pilkinton said.
To commemorate the anniversary, the club commissioned
the song, "Music, Sweet Music," composed by Robert Lau,
who holds degrees from Lebanon Valley College,
the Eastman School of Music and Catholic University of America.
In addition to the alumni who returned to UF,
alumni from as early as 1932 sent warm wishes
to the current men in the Glee Club through phone
calls and letters, Burrichter said.
During the performance,
the Women's Chorale presented the men
with a plaque commemorating their 75th anniversary.
"I think we did really well, but I think
the men did really, really well," said Amineh Busch,
a member of the Women's Chorale.
Joe Holmes, class of 1960, was impressed
with the quality of the young men in the Glee Club
and thought that there is more musical talent now
than when he was in the club.
"All this was extra-curricular then,
now they are very good technicians and are well
disciplined," Holmes said. "I loved it, we left school
in '60 and coming back here, being in this environment,
has been wonderful."