For Singers

Chorus America champions the dedicated choral singer by developing online resources and tools to advance skills and promoting connections between singers. We recognize that choral singing is the most popular form of participation in the performing arts, that choral singers are active and engaged citizens, and that children who sing have greater academic success and social skills.

Articles

Life Lessons from Choral Singers

Life Lessons from Choral Singers

Chorus America Staff | Adults/Seniors, Community Outreach, Impact/Value, Participation, Singing, Volunteer

In addition to enriching musical knowledge and enhancing vocal technique, singing in a chorus can also teach important lessons about life itself. We reached out to the growing network of choruses specifically for older adults, and asked longtime singers about the ways in which singing has informed other aspects of their lives. Read more

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Keeping the Choral Singer Pipeline Flowing

Keeping the Choral Singer Pipeline Flowing

Mike Rowan | Adults/Seniors, Participation, Recruitment, Singing

Singers are the lifeblood of the choral field. Ensembles from coast to coast are anchored by veterans of school and youth choral programs who found the experience rewarding enough that they continued through adulthood. But as choral leaders know all too well, many choristers can’t or don’t stick with it; they drop out of choral singing when they hit significant life transitions. Read more

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Creating a Lifelong Singer

Creating a Lifelong Singer

Jill Kimball | Children/Youth, Conducting, Evaluation, Impact/Value, Participation, Singing

When Susan McMane was in high school, she probably spent about as much time chanting “two, four, six, eight” as she did singing “do, re, mi.”  Read more

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A New Career Path for Singers

A New Career Path for Singers

Kathryn Mueller | Careers, Innovation, Professional, Singing

A growing number of singers are knitting together careers by traveling from city to city to perform with professional choral ensembles. Here’s how this model works for them – and how it impacts the choral field. Read more

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Inside Broadway's First A Cappella Musical: An Interview with James Snyder

Inside Broadway's First A Cappella Musical: An Interview with James Snyder

Mike Rowan | Careers, History, Profile, Singing

There’s a groundbreaking new musical in New York powered entirely by the human voice. In Transit is Broadway’s first a cappella musical, boasting a creative team that includes Frozen songwriter Kristen Anderson-Lopez and contemporary a cappella guru Deke Sharon. The show’s opening is an exciting development for proponents of vocal music, and a prime showcase for actors with unique a cappella singing talents like James Snyder. Read more

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The Heart of Vocal Harmony

The Heart of Vocal Harmony

Emotional Expression in Group Singing

Mike Rowan | Composing/Commissioning, Conducting, General, Performance, Profile, Sample/Template

Music is an emotional medium, yet we often spend rehearsal time in our choirs focused on notes, rhythms, and precision, rarely addressing the meaning of the music, says arranger and producer Deke Sharon. In the new book The Heart of Vocal Harmony: Emotional Expression in Group Singing, Sharon puts the process of delivering an emotionally compelling performance front and center. Read more

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Meet A Donor: Michael Pettry, Indianapolis Symphonic Choir

Meet A Donor: Michael Pettry, Indianapolis Symphonic Choir

Mike Rowan | Careers, Fundraising, Governance, Management/Leadership, Profile

Each month, Chorus America profiles one of our members in our Meet A Member interview series. To mark the season of giving, we changed things up a little bit for December and spoke to a Chorus America donor, Michael Pettry, executive director of the Indianapolis Symphonic Choir, who has also been known to be generous with his time and talents. President & CEO Catherine Dehoney spoke to Michael about his latest work with the Symphonic Choir and what inspires him to give. Read more

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Choral Podcasts

Choral Podcasts

Mike Rowan | Audiences, Innovation, Marketing/Public Relations, Technique/Tool, Technology

Podcasts: They seem to be sprouting up everywhere these days. Similar to social media and the smartphone, the rise of podcasts—audio programs released as a series of episodes that you can subscribe to and download onto your device—has brought significant changes to the way we consume our media today. In 2013, Apple’s podcasts hit the one billion subscriber mark. Read more

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Vocal Hacks

Vocal Hacks

Kathryn Mueller | Education, General, Singing, Technique/Tool

Every conductor, singer or voice teacher needs a few good vocal hacks. No, we’re not talking mediocre singers; we’re borrowing from the tech world where Merriam-Webster defines a hack as a “creative solution to a computer hardware or programming problem or limitation.” Read more

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What to Wear: Let’s Get Practical

What to Wear: Let’s Get Practical

Kelsey Menehan | Performance

One choral leader described setting a concert attire policy as “somewhere near getting a root canal.” Ouch! We asked choruses—and the choral apparel companies that clothe them—to give us their best advice for making the process as pain-free as possible.  Read more

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Resources

The Feldenkrais Method for Singers—Relaxing the Tongue

The Feldenkrais Method for Singers—Relaxing the Tongue

Karen R Clark | Health, Singing, Technique/Tool

The practice of Feldenkrais can help singers perform with minimum effort and maximum efficiency. In this video, Feldenkrais practitioner Karen Clark demonstrates how to train the powerful tongue muscle to cooperate with rather than hinder the singing process. Read more

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The Choral Warm-Ups of Robert Shaw

The Choral Warm-Ups of Robert Shaw

Pamela Elrod Huffman | Rehearsal, Singing, Technique/Tool

Believing that the chorus was a corporate entity with a spirit of kinship, famed conductor Robert Shaw used the warm-up period to focus on matters of tuning, tone color, ensemble blend, acoustical conditions, and development of the dynamic palette. We've compiled several of his warm-ups. Read more

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Singer Information Form

Singer Information Form

Chorus America Staff | General, Operations, Performance, Sample/Template, Singing

Use this singer information form template to gather information during the audition process.  Read more

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The Feldenkrais Method for Singers—Achieving Relaxed Alertness

The Feldenkrais Method for Singers—Achieving Relaxed Alertness

Karen R Clark | Health, Singing, Technique/Tool

The practice of Feldenkrais can help singers perform with minimum effort and maximum efficiency. In this video, Feldenkrais practitioner Karen Clark demonstrates how being both relaxed and alert can bring greater freedom in singing. Read more

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The Feldenkrais Method for Singers—Vocalizing To Release Tension

The Feldenkrais Method for Singers—Vocalizing To Release Tension

Karen R Clark | Health, Singing, Technique/Tool

Through a self-discovery process using movement, the practice of Feldenkrais can help singers perform with minimum effort and maximum efficiency. In this video, Feldenkrais practitioner Karen Clark guides a singer to notice and then release tension while vocalizing. Read more

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The Feldenkrais Method for Singers—Releasing Eye Tension

The Feldenkrais Method for Singers—Releasing Eye Tension

Karen R Clark | Health, Singing, Technique/Tool

The practice of Feldenkrais can help singers perform with minimum effort and maximum efficiency. In this video, Feldenkrais practitioner Karen Clark demonstrates how releasing tension around the eyes contributes to less effortful singing. Read more

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The Feldenkrais Method for Singers—Opening the Throat

The Feldenkrais Method for Singers—Opening the Throat

Karen R Clark | Health, Singing, Technique/Tool

The practice of Feldenkrais can help singers perform with minimum effort and maximum efficiency. In this video, Feldenkrais practitioner Karen Clark demonstrates how opening the throat releases tension and allows for greater freedom in singing. Read more

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The Feldenkrais Method for Singers—Centering with the Breath

The Feldenkrais Method for Singers—Centering with the Breath

Karen R Clark | Health, Singing, Technique/Tool

The practice of Feldenkrais can help singers perform with minimum effort and maximum efficiency. In this video, Feldenkrais practitioner Karen Clark demonstrates the use of breath to center and stabilize the singing process. Read more

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The Feldenkrais Method for Singers—Introduction

The Feldenkrais Method for Singers—Introduction

Karen R Clark | Health, Singing, Technique/Tool

You know that freed-up feeling where it seems your body is singing itself? Singers yearn for more of that, but myriad stresses, tensions, confusions, and vocal issues can get in the way. Through a self-discovery process using movement, the practice of Feldenkrais can help singers perform with minimum effort and maximum efficiency. In this video series, Feldenkrais practitioner Karen Clark describes and demonstrates how this approach has helped her—and the singers she works with—release tension and find greater freedom in their singing. Read more

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Virtual Voice Lesson: The Farinelli Breath Exercises

Virtual Voice Lesson: The Farinelli Breath Exercises

Shauna Fallihee | Singing, Technique/Tool

Carlo Broschi, known as Farinelli, was a famous, and wildly popular castrato of the early 1700s. One of the secrets to his magnificent voice was the seemingly unending stream of breath that supported it. Voice teacher Shauna Fallihee demonstrates the breathing exercises Farinelli created to strengthen the intercostal muscles. Read more

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Events

Schola Cantorum Silicon Valley Holds Mozart and Bach Sing-Along

Schola Cantorum Silicon Valley Holds Mozart and Bach Sing-Along

Los Altos, CA

Mary Powell | Singing

Schola Cantorum wraps up their Summer Sings program with a sing-along to Bach’s “Magnificat,” and Mozart’s “Coronation Mass,” Monday, August 14, at 7:30 p.m. Lou De La Rosa will conduct. Schola will provide the scores. Held at the Los Altos United Methodist Church, 655 Magdalena Ave., Los Altos. Cost: $15 general, ages 25 and under free with student ID. For tickets, visit ScholaCantorum.org, or call 650-254-1700. Read more

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Vancouver Chamber Choir- LIGHT TRANSFORMING "Choral Explorations II with Michael Zaugg"

Vancouver Chamber Choir- LIGHT TRANSFORMING "Choral Explorations II with Michael Zaugg"

Steven Belanger | Adults/Seniors, Audiences, Children/Youth

Michael Zaugg is the guest conductor for this last concert of the 2017-2018 subscription season. Originally from Switzerland, he is now the conductor and music director of Alberta’s Pro Coro Canada. Michael is a long-time friend and collaborator with the Vancouver Chamber Choir, whom he has hosted many times in Edmonton, Ottawa and Montreal. His programme will have many new and intriguing choral works by Rautavaara, Rheinberger, Soderqvist, Whitacre, Archer, Saint-Saens, Elgar, Kuula, Knudson and Joby Talbot. Read more

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Vancouver Chamber Choir - RACHMANINOV VESPERS "and Lauridsen Lux aeterna"

Vancouver Chamber Choir - RACHMANINOV VESPERS "and Lauridsen Lux aeterna"

Steven Belanger | Adults/Seniors, Audiences, Children/Youth

Russian composer Sergei Rachmaninov’s music for the Orthodox “All-Night Vigil” - often known in the West as the “Vespers” - is known as his finest unaccompanied choral work, one of the landmarks of the entire choral repertoire. The Vancouver Chamber Choir combines with the Vancouver Cantata Singers to create a suitable Slavic sonority. As a companion piece, the Pacifica Singers join us for a 21st-century masterpiece and Vancouver Chamber Choir favourite – Morten Lauridsen’s “Lux Aeterna” for choirs and orchestra, an intimate work of quiet serenity centred around a universal symbol of hope, reassurance and goodness. And as a little bonus, Gabriel Faure’s exquisite “Messe basse” in Jon Washburn’s orchestral version, featuring the vibrant young singers of the Vancouver Youth Choir. Read more

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Vancouver Chamber Choir- MOODS AND MODES "Emotion in Music"

Vancouver Chamber Choir- MOODS AND MODES "Emotion in Music"

Vancouver, BC

Steven Belanger | Adults/Seniors, Audiences, Children/Youth

Choral programmes are often organized by similarities of the composers included or the texts being sung or chronologically by the eras they represent. But for this concert we’re experimenting with affective elements of music, grouping pieces together by the emotions they evoke. Of course, all music affects us emotionally, even those by composers who try expressly to not be expressive. Our Moods and Modes concert is more playful in concept, taking us on an evening’s journey through cheerfulness, piety, intensity, playfulness, sorrow and humour. Music of Bennet, Antognini, two Bachs, Dvorak, Beckwith, Berring, Alfven, Bernstein, Dowland, Josquin and Brazinskas. Read more

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Vancouver Chamber Choir- MAESTRO! The Annual Conductors’ Concert

Vancouver Chamber Choir- MAESTRO! The Annual Conductors’ Concert

Steven Belanger | Adults/Seniors, Audiences, Children/Youth

Our Conductors’ Concert is always one of the most fascinating events of the choral season. As the culmination of our 38th annual National Conductors’ Symposium, Jon Washburn and five invited conductors from around the world and pianist Stephen Smith will focus on three distinct musical genres — famous prayers, indigenous songs and story ballads. Come and enjoy the unusual repertoire and the varied interpretations of the six conductors. Music by Mozart, Bruckner, Durufle, Foss, Enkhbayar, Healey, Adams, Crossin, Bartok, Daunais, Washburn and more. Read more

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Vancouver Chamber Choir - RIVERS OF LIGHT "Choral Explorations I with Timothy Shantz""

Vancouver Chamber Choir - RIVERS OF LIGHT "Choral Explorations I with Timothy Shantz""

Steven Belanger | Adults/Seniors, Audiences, Children/Youth

Our guest conductor for this concert is Timothy Shantz from Calgary, where he is the music director of Spiritus Chamber Choir and Luminous Voices, as well as chorus master for the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra. He will lead the Vancouver Chamber Choir and pianist Stephen Smith in a programme from favourite composers old and new in our familiar performance home at Dunbar Ryerson United Church in Kerrisdale. Music of Esenvalds, Sisask, Debussy, O’Regan, Palestrina, Brahms, Ryan, Elgar, Monteverdi and Jonathan Dove. Read more

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Vancouver Chamber Choir- A BAROQUE CHRISTMAS Bach and More for Christmas

Vancouver Chamber Choir- A BAROQUE CHRISTMAS Bach and More for Christmas

Steven Belanger | Adults/Seniors, Audiences, Children/Youth

The great Baroque composers knew how to write music that literally dances with joy. Make it a party – meet the Vancouver Chamber Choir family of choirs, orchestra and soloists in the Orpheum for a concert which celebrates the Christmas season like no other. Our guest conductor is John William Trotter, the Choir’s former Associate Conductor, who will lead the various forces in music of Bach, Vivaldi and carols for all to sing. Read more

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Vancouver Chamber Choir-REJOICE! "European Carols & Readings"

Vancouver Chamber Choir-REJOICE! "European Carols & Readings"

Vancouver, BC

Steven Belanger | Adults/Seniors, Audiences, Children/Youth, Community Outreach

Chilly December days herald the warmth and intimacy of Christmas choirs singing the Nativity story. You are invited – join conductor Jon Washburn, organist Bryn Nixon and the Vancouver Chamber Choir for an evening of beloved favourites and new discoveries, all in the welcoming ambience of Dunbar Ryerson United Church. Music of Praetorius, Bach, Berlioz, Rubbra, Sibelius, Joubert, Tavener, Quinn, Mendelssohn and traditional carols galore. Read more

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Vancouver Chamber Choir-THE MASTERS "Great Choral Music"

Vancouver Chamber Choir-THE MASTERS "Great Choral Music"

Vancouver, BC

Steven Belanger | Adults/Seniors, Audiences, Children/Youth

Vancouver Chamber Choir alumna Kathleen Allan leads a programme of music from some of the greatest choral masters - Palestrina, Gabrieli, Bach, Brahms, Britten and Poulenc. Also, Jon Washburn combines the Choir’s professional singers with advanced choral students from six Metro Vancouver university music departments in the annual FOCUS! event – guaranteed choral excitement!  Read more

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HERITAGE "Singing Canada’s Choral Songs"

HERITAGE "Singing Canada’s Choral Songs"

2205 W 45 Ave, Vancouver, BC

Steven Belanger | Adults/Seniors, Audiences, Children/Youth

Canada’s choral music has always been one of the Vancouver Chamber Choir’s specialties. In this concert, we celebrate Canada’s 150th anniversary and conductor Jon Washburn’s 50th year in Vancouver with a great panorama of Canadian repertoire. Music of Willan, Somers, Beckwith, Raminsh, Chatman, Emery, Allan, Archer and a few special surprises from Canada’s past and future. Read more

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Dialogue

Questions During Rehearsal?

Questions During Rehearsal?

Anonymous | Rehearsal, Singing

Singers, does your conductor allow questions during rehearsal? What are the pros and cons from your perspective? Read more

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