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6 February 2017

How I wish I should show you what I've been working on all day today.  Back when Benny entered my life, it was through the inspiration of my friend Claire, who had been doing a similar thing for a young friend of hers.  She showed me a couple of pictures she had created and one struck me as something I really wanted to try.

It won't be for a couple of weeks yet, since next week will be Valentine's day for Benny and the picture I made today will probably be the next week, at which time I'll print it here.

It involved posing Benny, which turned out to be easier than I thought for this particular scene.  But then I had to eliminate the background, substitute a different background and add other touches from pictures I found on Google images.

I think all together it probably took me 3 hours to make this picture but I am so pleased with how it came out.  I can hardly wait to show you!

Walt and I went to this concert last night.  It was a fund raiser for Citizens who Care for the Elderly, an organization for which Walt has been on the board for many years.

This is the 25th year that CWC has put on a concert to raise money for the organization.  When it first began a group of wonderful, talented local singers and dancers put on a show which featured the work of a composers like Noel Coward, Rodgers and Hammerstein, Hoagy Carmichael, etc.  Or the music of music icons like Frank Sinatra, Peggy Lee, etc.  It was all done to the always interesting, always entertaining background of each song written and read by MC and performer Stephen Peithman, while the performers -- 3 tables of 2 each -- waited until their time to perform.

The concert was wildly successful.  All the performers were probably friends of nearly everyone in the audience, they had been performing in local musical for years and the show was always a sell-out.  In the early days, they brought groups of people from places like Atria to come and see the show.  It was CWC's biggest fundraiser of the year.

But over the years, the group of performers changed.  People dropped out and were replaced, a couple of people died  In fact, the guy who was in charge of it every year since the beginning died and Walt took over that job.

Then three years ago, Stephen's father was 100 years old and having health problems.  Stephen did not think he would be able to put in the time necessary to write, rehearse and perform the show. Some other arrangement had to be made, since this was, as I said, the group's biggest fund raiser.  And remember that for all those years, all of these talented folks donated their time and energy for CWC.  Could they find another group of performers willing to donate their time to put on a show?

Somebody knew somebody who knew people who liked to perform and they put on a different kind of show.  It was entertaining, but was nowhere near what we had seen from the core group for so many years. At least one of the members of the original group came to that concert and liked it.  She said it was time for new blood and that she, herself, the oldest in the group was ready to retire (she died a year or so later).  The old faithful audience was getting older and many were dying and it was time to find something that would appeal to a younger crowd.

The new group who performed liked what they did and agreed to do it again the following year.  By this, the third year, it had become accepted that they would do the show.  Sadly, the audience is not coming out like they used to and ticket sales are down, but they do a decent job and the end result is enjoyable.

This year's theme was advertised as kind of a history of rock and roll, but with songs like "Summertime" and "I could have danced all night" it was more ballads of the 50s and 60s along with rock numbers.  I did like the music.

They did a decent job, but the show desperately needed an impartial director, it definitely needed more rehearsal with the sound system, since the pre-recorded music in too many instances covered up the singers.  The MC, who was fun and did a good job of covering up when goofs occurred, could not read his notes all the time because the font was too small.  Now, this was the second performance they had given.  They had done a show the night before too, and wouldn't the logical thing be to re-run the script in a larger font??

I also had some serious critiques of a couple of people's choice of costume for various numbers, but I am not writing a review, so I will not go into detail here.

The most fun number was when a little girl who looked to be about 5 years old, came out on stage by herself and sang "This land is your land," being joined by a chorus after she finished the first run through of the song. She was just adorable, but her name does not appear in the program and nobody introduced her or told how old she was.  (Since this show wasn't being reviewed, it doesn't really matter, I guess, but it's too bad the audience didn't know who she was.)

The group gave it their all and I think the audience had a good time.  We don't know what the ticket sales were until all the receipts are counted, but whether this was the last concert of this sort is unknown.  Maybe 25 years is the right year to go out on.  But that leaves CWC in search of another fund raiser!

After the concert, we went back to Sushi Unlimited.  It was David's 45th birthday and it was time for Japanese again.  I chose tempura this time instead of sushi.  And we drank a toast to Dave.  Now we are free and clear until April and Paul's anniversary, followed by May and Dave's.  We have weird calendars.


2005 Concert group.  Sadly two of these people are no longer with us.

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