Hello. I am expecting a little more traffic to my site as I trying to drum up a little bit of publicity for the choirs that I run.
This is a post which might answer some of your questions or allay any fears.
Joining a choir or any group can be daunting. I know I have walked into a strange hall full of strange people with trepidation many times joining choirs, choruses and am dram groups. Sometimes you are lucky as you may take a friend along but sometimes you may be doing it on your own. In regards to my choirs here are a few points.
1) There are no auditions! You will never be asked to sing solo or on your own. Never ever ever! If you are someone who might like to sing a few solo bits then there are opportunities but it will be full consent.
2) There is no sheet music! Don't worry about understanding the dots on the page.....you dont need to. Everything is taught by ear. This involves a call and response learning style. I sing at you, the choir sings back. We stick the bits together. We have a song! It is amazing how quickly a song can be learnt in this way and with harmony parts as well! It has been found that songs learnt by ear tend to stick better in the brain (that was the technical bit ha ha) and people get better and better at it.
3) Arrrgh - there is no sheet music!!! Some people like sheet music. I found it refreshing to get away from singing with a sheet of dots to a page of words when I first got involved with natural voice. Dont let it put you off. Come and give it a try. I also loved the gay abandon with which I could sing. Having come from a tradition that is quite rigid it is nice to sing freely for a change, That being said I am all for singing with more rigid methods but this is not what my choirs are about. I also have people who sing in my choirs and then also sing in ones with more traditional methods, church choirs, choral groups etc. You dont have to stick with one type. Mix it up a bit.
4) I cannot sing! Yes, yes and yes you can. If you can talk you can sing. If you can hum then you can sing. Natural voice has a strong focus on exercises that free the voice, warm it up well, treat the whole body as the instrument and engage the breathing mechanism. You will be amazed at what a simple bit of moving about and doing some vocal warm ups will do. Maybe someone told you that you could'nt sing. IGNORE THEM! Everyone makes a wrong note sometimes. Dont let it stop you. If you want to sing then come and sing. You wont regret it. Sometimes these cruel words were said in childhood causing so many years of never singing. I have met some AMAZING singers who were told as a child that they could not sing. Its criminal. Honestly please give it a try.
5) I might make a mistake. Honestly in a group of voices dont worry. It is barely perceptible, We are learning. It does not matter. We are singing for the sheer joy of it, for the fun of it. If we drop a few pitches, sing the harmony bit wrong it really does not matter. We are singing and that is what counts. Furthermore I make mistakes, sometimes my hand turns into an extra from Dr Strangelove but it tends to raise a laugh and we start again. To err is human and all that.
6) Friendly. I have continually found that singing groups are the friendliest of places. Singing with more people is more fun. More people the more the fun. You will get a warm welcome at any of my groups and there is always tea or coffee available.
7) I dont want to perform. Not a problem. If we get asked to sing somewhere I always check that we have enough people that want to do it and can do it. If we cant then thats fine. We dont do it. If you dont want to then thats fine too. I try and always keep the rehearsals fresh even when we are leading up to a performance.
8) I dont have time. I make a point of making the choirs very accessible, If you can come to every rehearsal then thats brilliant and you will get more and more out of every week. You confidence will grow. You will make more friends. You will get better and better. If you cannot come every week then thats fine as well. Life can get in the way. I would prefer someone to come and sing once a month than not at all. We do new songs every week so you are never totally on the back foot.
If you have any more questions then please contact me 07946 344 281, firstname.lastname@example.org http://naturalvoice.net is the website of natural voice x