The third step on our journey to confidently singing together! So far, you may have been thinking about a community choir…. here’s the next instalment. You’ve actually joined a community choir….

I’m really enjoying this/ This is actually fun.

Yes. All of this. There’s no point taking up a new hobby or activity and not enjoying it. Enjoyment and laughter are at the heart of our choirs – the foundation to the singing. Of course I teach how to sing well and how to blend harmonies and sound fab, but it’s all done with enjoyment in mind. And let me tell you, there’s nothing quite as enjoyable as getting it right!

“Consistently the best part of my week. It’s so liberating to sing my heart out with the West Bridgford Liberty Singers! Kari manages to make learning new music both easy & fun. I would highly recommend.

Christine Watson – West Bridgford Liberty Singers

The music isn’t too hard to learn.

We take our time to get things right. I usually teach things three times – less if we’ve nailed it, more if we just can’t get the hang of it. Everything is taught by ear so I create recordings of my arrangements and teach from them on the night – these are then put on a shared drive for singers to access in-between rehearsals should they want to. There’s no expectation to practice in-between sessions but some people like to be ahead of the game! Everything is explained simply without being silly. I use a lot of analogies which people can relate to (see other blog posts for examples).

We usually start singing along with the actual artist first – a bit like karaoke. We then remove the vocals and use instrumental tracks. This is when I start teaching the harmony parts. I arrange the choir into colours (there’s another blog post about that too!) and make a start on harmonies. As a start up choir, these will be simpler and quick to pick up. I make sure of it. As we progress, we can add in more bits here and there….

I don’t feel pressured into giving more than I’m able.

I also record all of the rehearsals and host the audio on the website the following day – if you missed rehearsals you can listen in. Or not. it really is up to you. Some people don’t want to sing in public. You don’t have to – again it’s a choice. Some people would just like to sing the song they know and that’s enough – that’s fine too! I think a performance is a great goal to have for a choir but each person is different on what they want to get out of their singing and we accommodate this.

I look forward to rehearsals.

I deliberately keep rehearsals to fortnightly (ish) so that the commitment is manageable. Occasionally there are odd rehearsal added if we have something important to prepare for and we don’t rehearse at all in August. (So many people go away that’s it’s impossible to continue to teach – so we pause then come back ready for anything in September). I keep in touch with everyone via a private Facebook group in-between sessions. We are a community, we are still that even when we’re not in the room singing together! You can participate in this as much or as little as you like.

I’ve made some friends!

Whether you come to choir with your existing friend, or make some new ones, it’s remarkable how much better we can feel when surrounded by these people. I know people in previous choirs who have met brand new friends and forged some incredibly supportive friendships.

Does this inspire you to join a community choir?!