Latest News

  • Horizon is back in action! (Hallmark of Harmony, Horizon 2020)
  •  Date Posted: Sun, 19 Sep 2021

    Horizon is  back!

    Preparations are finally underway for Hallmark to be part of the BABS show in November that follows the Quartet prelims. It was fantastic to see old friends again in the flesh (as it were) and to make that unmistakeable Hallmark sound. As ever the music leadership did an outstanding job in leading the coaching and everyone is looking forward to the next horizon event in October where we will be graced by the presence of the one and only Mr Zac Boooooooole!
  • Magic Moments
  •  Date Posted: Wed, 18 Aug 2021
    Magic Moments
    More great singing and coaching at King Edward VII School and on Jamulus.  Thanks to all the coaches for their brilliant leadership.  The in-person rehearsal ended with a thrilling taste of things to come, with all four parts singing together in glorious harmony,  To be continued next week....

  • Another step forward
  •  Date Posted: Wed, 4 Aug 2021

    The process of building back to full chorus rehearsals continued this week with the first in-person duet sessions being held at King Edward VII Lower School, and a parallel Jamulus session being delivered to members who were not there in person.  It was great to sing in harmony again, and thanks go to members of the Music Team for making this possible.
  • We're back!
  •  Date Posted: Wed, 21 Jul 2021

    A special and much anticipated moment on a warm summer's evening as many chorus members rehearsed together in person for the first time in 16 months, while a Jamulus session was run for others who couldn't be there in person..  

    Thank you to our talented coaching team (Duncan Blackeby, Nick Bryant, Bob Devine, Seb Marshall and Colin Maskrey) for making it such an enjoyable and useful evening, and to members of the Small Group Development Stream who acted as stewards.  
  • Another successful SGS session (Hallmark of Harmony, Horizon 2020)
  •  Date Posted: Thu, 8 Jul 2021

    Nope this is not an audition for "Singing in the rain". The amazing Seb Marshall came all the way from Manchester to hold a SGS event and we made him smile as the chords rang out. Seb took us through:
    • You are so beautiful: Focus on timing and getting the breath points right. Seb was also keen to get the early chords as beautiful as possible.
    • My Girl: Again timing was a focus here 
    • Call Me: More focus on timing here making sure that the notes in the tag are given the right length so that there is no leakage into the breaks that Sam has put into the arrangement. 

    Great session thank you Seb!
  • Small Group Singing at SHU
  •  Date Posted: Sat, 26 Jun 2021
    Small Group Singing at SHU
    Small Group Singing  Event

    Many thanks to Jules Roberts for organising a Small Group SInging event up at Sheffield Hallam University (Collegiate Crescent). Singing together was a realy pleasure enhanced by the excellent coaching that Sam Hubbard gave us with "How can I keep from singing" and "You don't you won't".  

    Can't wait for all restrictions to be lifted!
  • Pride Month 2021
  •  Date Posted: Tue, 8 Jun 2021
    Pride Month 2021
    June is pride month, and that's a great opportunity to celebrate the contribution that LGBT+ people have made to our world of music. 

    We recognise the discrimination experienced by LGBT+ people, and are proud to say that our chorus welcomes all singers regardless of sexual orientation.

  • Bridge Over Troubled Water...Launched (Hallmark of Harmony, Horizon 2020)
  •  Date Posted: Mon, 31 May 2021
    Premier of Hallmark's Tribute to Bridge Over Troubled Water

    Hallmark's tribute to the classic Simon and Garfunkel song "Bridge over troubled water" was the finale to a busy bank holiday weekend schedule of events for BABS Sing 2021.

    Out thanks have to go to Hallmark Legend Tim Briggs for the lead vocals and to the wonderful BHS 2015 International Quartet Champions, Instant Classic, for collaborating with us.
    YouTube Video URL:
  • First Tuesday night live singing rehearsal! (Hallmark of Harmony, Horizon 2020)
  •  Date Posted: Wed, 12 May 2021

    Hallmark rehearses live for the first time in just over 12 months

    This image captures Hallmark singing together but apart on a Tuesday night! Thanks and credit needs to go to Paul Kaiserman, Paul Searson and Duncan Blackeby for their patience and perseverance in making this happen. Not even the worst Thunderstorm to hit the East Midlands in a few years could stop this from happening. Before the event, after a year on Zoom, people's expectations were pretty low but the feedback has been overwhelming positive; it was great to hear those chords!

    Hallmark is making use of some software called Jamulus. Jamulus requires a decent computer with a wired connection to the internet, a good quality microphone, some good quality headphones and a little bit of handholding for the technophobe. Some members of the chorus are not set up and so a way has been found to patch Jamulus into Zoom so that everyone in the club can benefit from a Jamulus rehearsal to a greater or lesser degree.

    The overwhelming feedback has been positive, even from those that could attend via Zoom. Here are a few verbatims:

    "That was fabulous..."
    "That was really something..."
    "Good session. Well worth the trouble..."
    "I had almost forgotten how much I enjoyed singing in harmony..."
    "...very enjoyable even though I was still on Zoom..."
    "I was having a great time until my laptop crashed..."
  • Jordan Travis Coaching Night (Hallmark of Harmony, Horizon 2020)
  •  Date Posted: Fri, 2 Apr 2021
    Jordan Travis Coaching Night

    Jordan Travis Coaching Night

    Wonderful picture of Jodan getting a round of applause from the club after and engaging and informative session on improving singing technique. The key message is to just do a little each day (5-15 mins) to improve. From day to day there will be no noticable improvement BUT over the long term you will notice. No need to do anything complex, practice the basics:
    • Alignment
    • Breathing
    • Phonation

  • Tim becomes a "Legend of Hallmark" (Hallmark of Harmony, Horizon 2020)
  •  Date Posted: Fri, 2 Apr 2021
    Tim becomes a "Legend of Hallmark"

    Tim Briggs awarded "Legend of Hallmark" status

    Tim's relationship with Hallmark changed this year and although Tim is already a legend in Hallmark, BABS, LABBS and just about anywhere he goes, we felt that it was time to recognise this with a formal(ish) presentation. Hallmark has been on memorable journey with Tim at the helm for the last 4 years and we are all incredibly grateful. 

    After the excellent coaching session from Jordan Travis, which TIm attended, an awards ceremony was planned. Little did Tim know that this was a cover for a COVID-19 safe delivery of the award, a bottle of bubbly and framed photo to honour Tim's newly found status as a "Legend of Hallmark", Thank you Tim.

    To round off the night we did look at the awards, there are some up and coming legends:
    1. Member most likely to have had dark hair when he started barbershop singing.: Colin Maskrey
    2. The member with the most hair growth on his head over lockdown.: John Faben
    3. The member with the most facial hair grown over lockdown.: Jules Roberts
    4. SPARK awards: The presenter with the most unexpected session. : Glenn Goodman
    5. Section awards: Tenor most likely to be asked for help in a musical emergency.: Sam Hubbard
    6. Section awards: Baritone most likely to spot mistakes in sheet music.: Colin Maskrey
    7. Section awards: Lead most likely to aspire to be a front row prima donna.: Chris Bromley
    8. Section awards: Bass most likely to count "do-doos" on his fingers.: John Faben
    9. Member making best use of kitchen facilities during rehearsals.: Paul Mason
    10. Music Team: member making best use of metaphors when coaching.: Andy Allen
  • Grand Central Chorus (Hallmark of Harmony, Horizon 2020)
  •  Date Posted: Thu, 4 Mar 2021
    Of interest to many in Barbershop circles, and certainly to many Hallmark of Harmony members, current and past, 4th March, is the 30th Anniversary of Grand Central Chorus. It is yet another example of how dedication, with talented leadership and quality of membership that Grand Central have enjoyed since 1991, can combine the enjoyment of singing as a hobby, and the satiusfaction of success in the public eye. 
    Hallmark of Harmony know only too well, having recently celebrated our own big Anniversary, just what it means to enjoy what we do, AND to receive plaudits and reward from our peers for doing just that. It is great to see that our close friends from Nottingham have shared in similar success.
    A visit to their Twitter account @GrandCentralMen, will give you a brief history of their Chorus. There you will recognise  names of sevearal Musical Directors with whom Hallmark of Harmony have been associated with, and honoured to have coordinated wth in coaching projects,with our own Musical Directors.  A close relationship with benefits for both Chorus' .As you may well know, we are blessed that this close relationship between our Directors has enticed one such individual- Zac Boules, GCC Musical Director from 2011 to 2020, to share his wealth of experience and assist us in our 'plans out of lockdown'!
    Ove r the years, individuals from both our Chorus' have for periods represented both Hallmark and Grand Central. It has been a pleasure to see several GCC members at our virtual Horizon rehearsals, and we look forward to meeting those same faces, in person, when current restrictions are lifted.    
    May this relationship between our two Chorus' continue, and the very best to Grand Central Chorus for their next 10 year journey.   
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