A Turtle’s Tribute:
He was born March 7, 1962 and died June 8, 2016. He was a bass in the TCC from Aug. 1, 1994 until June 30, 2009. He performed in 66 concerts, never missing one his entire tenure. He was a member of One Achord from 2003-2005, of ENCORE! from 2002-2008, of the Chamber Chorus from 2002-2007. Mark rejoined the TCC Feb. 23, 2o13, and remained a member through the rest of the season. However, during this short return he did not sing in any concerts nor was he able to attend many rehearsals because of health issues.
His first performance was “Betty, Broadway, and the Boys” in Oct. 1994; his last was “Celebrate America” in June 2009. For many years he functioned as “Office Coordinator,” succeeding Paul Meyers. Mark held no elected offices but served as the bass ASL, as they are now called, from 1998-2001, and then again from 2002-2006. He achieved Terrapin status in the 2007-2008 season.
Here is an excerpt from an ENCORE? program in 2001-2002: “Mark Parker, (Bass), has sung in the bass section of the Turtle Creek Chorale for eight years. He is the bass Administrative Section Leader and works full time on the Turtle Creek Chorale Staff as Office Coordinator. He also works as Administrative Assistant for The Women’s Chorus of Dallas. Mark has enjoyed singing in ENCORE! for the past three years. Music is his life. He has no free time. Note: Mark sang “Moonshine Lullaby” as a solo in this concert.”
He was the TCC Featured Spotlight member in June 2007. Here is what was written:”Mark Parker, Office Coordinator remembers one day in June at a Tuesday night rehearsal when Paul Meyers, then Office Coordinator of the Turtle Creek Chorale, announced that he was moving to California. Mark remembers everyone was sad to see him go. “After that rehearsal, I came up and hugged him and whispered in his ear, ‘I will miss you so much and I want your job.’ I petitioned the board chair and Tim and convinced them that they should keep a singing member in the position of Office Coordinator instead of hiring a non-singing member.” Thus began Mark’s full time life at the Turtle Creek Chorale.
Now Mark’s entire day is filled with the Turtle Creek Chorale. And what a day! “Not only do I provide administrative support for TCC membership and the Board of Directors and maintain the office, but I also get to be in an environment surrounded by music.” Mark shared some special memories about how the office usually revolves around singing. “There’s the time we pulled together a quartet of office staff to sing holiday carols at the Adams Mark Hotel lobby. I remember the numerous years that we hopped in the car to carpool to the Adolphus Hotel during the holidays and go for barbeque at Sammy’s afterwards.” Mark also recalls a very personal situation that was emphasized when the staff first heard Sing for the Cure in Tim’s office. “After my bout with cancer, it was pretty powerful. I remember Tim rubbing my shoulders and the staff hugging me. I remember Mona always being here. And to this day,seven years later, I am still excited about each new experience as a TCC staff member.”
Mark also shares the path of being a singing member prior to being on staff.