In 1986, the Greater Cleveland Chorus (GCC) was formed as a result of the merger of three local choruses-Cleveland East Suburban, Cuyahoga Valley and West Towns. The combined chorus numbered over 100 and rehearsed in a number of venues in the Cleveland area, currently at the United Methodist Church in Independence.
Sweet Adelines Region 17
The Greater Cleveland Chorus, whose 70 + current members range in age from 30-85, is a member of Sweet Adelines International and is part of Region 17 which represents choruses from Ohio, Michigan, Indiana and Pennsylvania.
Each spring, the choruses within a region gather to compete for the first place chorus in the region, which then allows that chorus to compete at the International Convention the following year. The choruses are judged on 4 categories-sound, music, expression and showmanship. Points are awarded in each of those categories and the winning chorus scores the highest number of points.
During the chorus’ first fifteen years, Greater Cleveland has received many awards including numerous second and third place medals for achievements at Regional Chorus competitions. In 2000, by virtue of our second place medal in regional competition, GCC was invited to compete in the Buckeye Invitational Competition, a competition comprised of men’s and women’s barbershop choruses and quartets from around the United States. At that competition in Columbus Ohio, we were awarded First place chorus and Best in Competition honors. In 2001, the chorus was awarded the first of its seven consecutive first place regional chorus championship medals which made us eligible to compete against all other championship choruses throughout the world. Since the formation of the Greater Cleveland Chorus, we have also had within our membership a number of first place regional quartets, B.L.A.K. Velvet, Park Avenue, TGIF and our current Region 17 champions, Naturally. B.L.A.K. Velvet placed 11th in the world at the Sweet Adelines International Competition in Las Vegas in 2006.
Jean Flinn-Master Director
The Greater Cleveland Chorus is fortunate to have Jean Flinn as its Master Director. Jean is a barbershop brat, having grown up in a family of barbershoppers-herself having joined Sweet Adelines in 1974. Possessing a great barbershop voice, she sang lead in her first barbershop quartet in the second grade-but her true love is directing and arranging. By virtue of our score achieved at our 2001 regional competition, our director Jean Flinn was elevated to the title of Master Director. Her keen ear for music has served her well as she is a Sweet Adelines’ certified judge in the music category. In addition, she is a certified music arranger and has blessed our chorus with a number of her arrangements. As if all those achievements do not keep her busy enough, for 21 years, she has also been a music educator in the Akron school district. As a member of the International Faculty for Sweet Adelines, she was often part of the teaching faculty at IES, an annual educational retreat and competition which was held in San Antonio, Texas. A sought after coach to quartets and choruses across the United States, her direction and skills guided us to our most recent first place win at Regional Competition in 2013. This Regional Championship makes us eligible to compete at the Sweet Adelines International Convention in Baltimore, MD in the fall of 2014.
2012 International Competition-Denver, Colorad
Our regional win in the spring of 2011 made us eligible to again compete on the international level and we traveled to Denver for this competition in 2012, where we achieved our highest score ever. At competition, choruses sing an up tune-traditionally a high spirited number accompanied by choreography, as well as a ballad which showcases the chorus in a more emotional and controlled setting.
The History of Sweet Adelines International – Take a brief look back to the beginning of Sweet Adelines International.
The Brief History of Barbershop – Get a brief glimpse into the history of barbershop.