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Tracy Frank, Published July 16 2013

HerVoice: Group brings music to F-M for more than fifty years

Her Voice is a weekly article about women in or from our area and how they make an impact on the world around them. If you know someone SheSays should feature in HerVoice, email Tracy Frank at tfrank@forumcomm.com.

FARGO – For more than half a century, Ginny Geston has found harmony as part of the Noteables, a local women’s chorus.

“I love music,” said Geston, who joined the group in 1961. “Singing is always a challenge.”

But almost more important than the music is the social aspect of the group, the Fargo woman said.

The chorus, which was originally called the Voice Section of the Fargo-Moorhead Music Club, started meeting in women’s homes in the 1960s simply for the joy of singing, said Jill Post, the group’s director and vice-president of the Fargo-Moorhead Area Music Club.

They eventually started singing at nursing homes, where members of the group had friends or relatives.

Now, the Noteables prepare two programs a year and perform them for about a dozen nursing homes and assisted living facilities and at the Fargo-Moorhead Area Music Club.

They also often sing at other events around the community. For the past two years, the Noteables performed a Christmas program with BELLissimo, a community hand bell choir.

The group performs everything from folk songs to show tunes, focusing on American composers. Each program includes about eight songs and lasts a half-hour.

The ladies practice for 90 minutes a week from October to December for the Christmas programs, and March through May for the spring programs.

Debbie Tight of Fargo has been a Noteables member for five years. She’s been singing since she was a child, and the group gives her a good outlet for it. Plus, she loves the social aspect of the group and the outreach, she said.

“I really like the benevolent work that we do by providing the concerts,” Tight said.

Her mother lived in an assisted living facility, so Tight knows from personal experience how nice it is to have groups entertain the residents, she said.

Vivian Acuff of Fargo joined the group in 1995 after hearing them sing.

“I was overwhelmed and wanted to be in the group,” she said, adding that she was drawn in by the harmonies and blending of the voices.

Almost 20 women make up the Noteables, ranging in age from their 50s on up.

It’s a really close-knit group, but always willing to welcome new people, Post said.

Those interested in joining, should attend the next Fargo-Moorhead Area Music Club Meeting at 1 p.m. on Sept. 16 in First Presbyterian Church.

Post has been directing the group since 1983. Even though it’s not a paid position, and it was difficult when she worked full-time, Post said she could never leave the group.

“I love the ladies,” she said. “I feel like a mother hen.”

Readers can reach Forum reporter Tracy Frank at (701) 241-5526