On a sunny autumn day at the Monmouth County Park System's Historic Longstreet Farm in Holmdel Park, the public was treated to exhibits of 1890 farm life. Woodworked tools, lumbering, blacksmithing, caning and needlework were all elements of everyday life 130 years ago. So, too, was the homespun music and harmonies that flowed from the family parlor at the end of a long day or during leisure moments.
photos by Allan Dean
The men of the Chorus of the Atlantic, under the direction of Craig J. Page, performed two sets for the public event on Sunday, September 26, 2021. The flow of the crowd slowed and congealed around the front of the farmhouse where the chorus was performing. They listened intently as the chorus sang some of our favorites like: our patriotic package, The Star-Spangled Banner, God Bless America (with intro), a few popular tunes Breaking Up Is Hard To Do, Edelweiss, Hello, Mary Lou, Good Old Days, Sentimental Journey, Irish Blessing, Shenandoah, and Take Me Home, Country Roads (under the direction Assistant Director Andy Ferreira) and several barberpole cats (barbershop standards) that gave a flavor of the music at turn of the 20th Century.
Associate Director Kirk Thomson led a demonstration of four-part harmony. The audience heard the Leads, Basses, Tenors and Baritones, in turn, and then the blended sound of the men singing, My Wild Irish Rose.
“A Quartet To Be Named Later”, was featured during each show. Terry Schmalzreid, Kirk Thomson, Allan Dean and Bruce Hanson sang: In My Room, Down By The Old Mill Stream, and Wait Till The Sun Shines, Nellie.
About Longstreet Farm:
The sights, sounds, and smells of rural Monmouth County in the 1890s have been re-created on 9 acres at Historic Longstreet Farm in Holmdel Park, Holmdel. Interpreters in period dress show both daily and seasonal agricultural and domestic activities.
Longstreet Farm is open daily year round from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Visitors may enter at their leisure, free of charge. From Memorial Day through Labor Day the farm is open 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Pets are not allowed within the farm.
The Farmhouse is open weekends and holidays, March through December, from 12-3:30 p.m. or by reservation. For reservations and information, call 732-946-3758.
About The Chorus of the Atlantic:
The all-male chorus performs at festivals, libraries, ballgames, town events, galas, and senior residence communities throughout Monmouth County and beyond.
Under the direction of music educator Craig J. Page, the men meet weekly to rehearse a repertoire that has been curated by the chorus’ music committee. A mix of nostalgic and popular tunes all featuring 4-part harmony.
The Chorus will soon return to its “home” rehearsal space in the spacious auditorium at the Red Bank Middle School, 101 Harding Road, Red Bank, NJ. The hours will then be 7:30 p.m. – 10:00 p.m. Watch our website for more information. www.redbankchorus.org.
Currently, we are meeting outdoors at the Lincroft Presbyterian Church parking lot, at the corner of W. Front Street and Everett Road in Lincroft on Tuesday evenings at 6:00 p.m.