Greensburg Daily News, Greensburg, IN

November 20, 2012

Kings, friends and glee clubs

Pat Smith
Greensburg Daily News

Greensburg — Today I’ll tell you about being out and about for a few occasions.

I went to the Oldenburg Academy Drama Club’s presentation of The King and I Nov. 9. It was beautifully done. The costumes were outstanding, but the work they must have taken! I couldn’t figure out where on earth the costume makers found all of the material it took to make them. Barbara Waits said she and Therese Zins shopped all over the place, including Cincinnati, for the fabrics. Shiny gold for the King, beautiful pastels for the King’s children and Anna dressed in the hoop skirts of the period. Barb also said that Mary Horninger made some, but Therese Zins, director and producer of the play, made most of the costumes.

Several of the young people playing parts were also in Tree County Players’ Annie Jr., which I also saw, including Justin Bates, Emma Bischoff, and Alexa and Mikalea Fangman. A surprise was seeing John Batterton perform as Captain Orton and as one of the guards.

John, son of Davies Batterton and Jennifer Clark, played Captain Orton whose ship brought Anna to Siam to be a teacher for the king’s children. He also played one of the guards. This play isn’t the only one that John has appeared in. He was in Oldenburg Academy’s You Can’t Take It With You and Arsenic and Old Lace.

The cast biographies stated that John “seems to get cast in parts that require accents,” which means that he’s good at accents. His ancestor, John Hazelrigg Batterton, started the Batterton Drug Store in 1854. John’s grandfather, also John Batterton, owned the drug store until selling it in 1982 to Hunter Pharmacy. At that time the drug store was 128 years old. Marsha, John’s grandmother, still lives in the family home.

Next, on Nov. 15 the library showed its Friends of the Library how much they are appreciated with a reception at HighPoint Orchard.

We were impressed with the array of goodies presented in a most attractive way. There were some fine door prizes. This reception was new to the Friends and very much appreciated. Becky Perkins said that the library personnel are grateful for the Friends and what they do for the library.”

No one participates in every Friends event. There’s a variety to choose from: book sales, bake sales, donating items, helping to coordinate events, getting the word out about the services offered by our library and, of course, paying our nominal dues which amounts to very little out of our budget but helps the Friends. Thanks to the library for the opportunity to mingle with others who appreciate our marvelous library.

On Nov. 16, the Arts & Cultural Council once again brought the Miami University Men’s Glee Club to Decatur County. More than 90 young men sang songs from Zambia, Scotland, Ireland, South Africa and many favorites including the beautiful Ave Maria. A couple of subgroups called the Cheezies and the Remnants were often humorous and they performed with obvious enthusiasm. This glee club has performed with major symphony orchestras that have included working with Beverly Sills, Robert Shaw, and other well-known performers plus the Cincinnati, Dayton and Middletown symphonies.

The glee club was founded in 1907 by the man who composed Miami’s Fight Song and its Alma Mater. It has toured Europe 11 times and sang in the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris. They traveled to Puerto Rico and Guadeloupe in 2001. In 2003, they traveled to Russia, Estonia and Finland where they sang with professional orchestras in St. Petersburg Philharmonic Hall and Moscow’s Tchaikovsky Hall. They went to China in 2008 where they performed at the pre-Olympic Arts Festival.

I am thankful that there are people in our county that are willing to put forth time and effort to bring entertainment to us such as the Miami University Men’s Glee Club. Nancy Fredrickson and David Fry co-chaired the glee club and I say a big “thank you” to Nancy and David and to the community minded businesses that sponsored the program.

And last but certainly not least, Mainstreet Greensburg is asking us to support Greensburg’s and Decatur County’s local businesses by buying at least two gifts from local merchants. Executive Director Bryan Robbins said, “Just two gifts purchased from our merchants will help our local economy, not to mention the fact that you’ll have the ability to spread the love and walk away with at least two one-of-a-kind presents for loved ones.” I bet we can all do that for our town.

This Thanksgiving I am especially grateful to live in Greensburg and Decatur County. I hope your Thanksgiving is filled with good food, good news and good company.