Starting in choir can be a bit intimidating, particularly if you’re new to music, or to singing. Here are 5 tips to help you get the most out of your choir experience!
Choir is different from singing solos, for several important reasons (read more about that here.) But listening is an incredibly important aspect of the choral experience. A chorister needs to listen to the other voices in their section, they need to listen to the accompanying piano, or other instruments, and they need to listen for the voices singing other parts, so that everyone can create a blended sound.
Listening to the conductor as well is essential, since they are the person with the best idea of the big picture, and the musical knowledge to bring all of the disparate aspects of choral music together.
#2. Talk to your neighbours:
It may be obvious, but don’t do this while a rehearsal is ongoing. Still, there are breaks, and before and after rehearsal to get to know the people sitting around you! You should absolutely get to know these people, since you’ll be spending quite a bit of time with them!
Choir can be a wonderful experience because of the people, and here at the CCC we feel like family, so get to know your fellow choristers, and those friendships will greatly enhance your musical experience as well!
#3. Bring your music:
You will receive music during the first few rehearsals, and it will be your responsibility to care for your music throughout the year. By all means, make markings with pencil throughout rehearsal to note entrances, or dynamic markings, or anything else the conductor might suggest. While your neighbours will likely be more than happy to share your music on the (hopefully!) rare occasion that your forget it, remembering to bring your own music, with your individual notes on it, will greatly enhance your choral experience!
#4. Personal research:
There is so much that goes into music, and vocal music in particular. While we spend a great deal of time teaching our choristers sight reading skills, some basic theory, and of course good vocal production, there is still so much to learn. If you find an interesting aspect of the piece, by all means – do your own personal research! Forging a personal connection with the music will make your interpretation well informed, and your research can help other choristers learn as well!
#5. Have fun!
We assume you’ve joined choir because you love music, and singing, and because you want to share that with other people, and we assure you that everyone sitting in the rehearsal hall with you feels exactly the same way. So relax, enjoy the music, get to know your fellow choristers, and have fun!
How else can you get the most out of choir? Tell us in the comments below!