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How to start a choir

A choir can add a wonderful dimension to many types of church services, in addition to providing music for special events and temporary housing programs. An effective choir director will realize the hard work and rewards that come with the organization and direction of a church choir.

The choir is that group of people singing together. However, there are different ways of singing , for example, in a single voice , that is, in unison; to several different parts , so with a polyphonic structure . The components belonging to a choir are called choruses or singers . Usually the choir is directed by a director. However, the purpose of this guide is very important. In fact, we will see, through very effective and above all very simple steps, how to create and manage a choir. Carefully follow the steps in this guide to achieve as good a result as satisfactory as possible.

First, if you want to create a choir, you must be aware that to do so you must have the spirit of the leader. Because? Simple, to be able to put together, manage people and voices requires a strong and decisive character. If you have the qualities described above, you just have to find the chants, by posting your ads or using your knowledge. When you name the word “choir” as the first image you might think of the Parish near home. In fact, you could start right there: the pastor will be happy to make available a well-equipped test room.

Once they find the choruses, men for the baritones and baritones, women (contraltos and sopranos), in a choral formation that is usually four voices, they only have to test their abilities. A good reading of the score will be necessary but not essential; where this quality is not present you might be teaching the correct reading. What is really indispensable is good musicality and therefore intonation, although it is not essential to have great ability to sing. You are reading how to create and manage a choir.

Each chorus will have to learn a part and sing it while others sing their own, this is not easy at all and that’s why separate trials will come for each. The trials will be divided for example one day only the sopranos and the contralti and another day the remaining ones. Everyone will learn their part of the score, harmonizing in the chorus, but at the same time keeping their own distinct voice. When you get the optimum performance of the songs, you can add more voices and split the singles vocals. If you work together, with passion and professionalism, the results will be great! Thanks for reading how to create and manage a choir.

Choir members can take turns teaching specific choral topics or a Bible passage. As they get involved in the choir, they will enjoy more participation. Take attendance and have rules about participation. Encourage choir members by offering an annual or biannual recognition banquet or reception. Plan social events so that members can get to know each other.

 

 

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Best choirs in the world

 

CORAL STUDY OF BUENOS AIRES

The Coral Studio of Buenos Aires was founded in 1981 by a group of young musicians who already had a decade of work in the Vocal Ensemble. It is integrated almost exclusively by professional musicians, summoned to interpret chamber music.

The group obtained a resounding success of public and of the specialized critic, and for this reason it began to be considered one of the best choirs of camera of the world.

UNIVERSITY CHOIR OF MENDOZA The University Choir of Mendoza was created on May 12, 1965 by Maestro Felipe Vallesi and until today has many awards and distinctions internationally.

As of 1997, she assumes the responsibility of this group, pioneer and dean of the choral activity, Prof. Silvana Vallesi.
He has developed an intense artistic work spreading universal choral music, offering numerous concerts in the entire Argentine provinces. They deserve to stand out, by the great repercussion of the public and of specialized critic, the performances in the Theater Colon of Buenos Aires in 1971, 1975, 1977, 1980, 1988 and 2003, in the Luna Park in 1994 and 1995 and in San Juan Coral 2006, where he was specially invited to participate in the X International Chamber Choir Competition of Marktoberdorff, Germany by the authorities of the Contest.
Abroad he has performed in important concert halls in Germany, Austria, Chile, Denmark, Spain, the United States, France, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Mexico, Norway, Paraguay, Sweden, Vatican and Venezuela. Recently, his participation in the 8th World Symposium on Choral Music -Copenhagen, the maximum event of choral music organized by the “International Federation of Choral Music” every three years in different countries, which brings together the best directors in Workshops and Conferences, stands out. And to the best Choirs in the Programmed Concerts, selected among 29 choirs from around the world.
Currently his varied repertoire a cappella is mainly focused on Contemporary Music offering and disseminating new choral works, premieres and first auditions of prestigious Argentine and foreign composers. As part of his search in the Avant-garde of the 20th and 21st centuries, Interdisciplinary Actions continue.

THE SIXTEEN

This is a British choir specializing in Renaissance and Baroque music founded by Harry Christophers in 1977. They are best known for their interpretations of polyphony by English composers.

Its components come mostly from the choirs of the University of Oxford and Cambridge. The choir has its own orchestra called “The Symphony of Harmony and Invention”, also sometimes called “The Sixteen Orchestra”.

Since 2001, the group has its own record company called Coro with which they release their new albums and reissue their old recordings from the late Collins Classics label.

The Sixteen appear regularly in a BBC television series called Sacred Music.

THE TALLIS SCHOLARS (Peter Phillips)

The Tallis Scholars is a British group that was founded in 1973 by director Peter Phillips. They specialize in the a cappella singing of the sacred music of the Renaissance. The group is usually composed of ten members and they have their own music label, called Gimell Records.
In addition to their work as professional musicians, some members of the group also have activities in the academic field: Phillips has published the book English Sacred Music 1549-1649 and Sally Dunkley, Francis Steele and Deborah Roberts have activities related to the publication and editing of works related to the Renaissance and the beginning of the Baroque.

KING’S SINGERS

King’s Sisters literally means “The singers of the king”. It is a choir specialized in singing a cappella . Its name is reminiscent of King’s College in Cambridge, England, where the group was founded by six students in 1968.

 

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Types of voices in a choir

A voice type is a style of singing voice differentiated by certain distinguishing characteristics. Every aspiring singer, who wants to learn how to sing, will sooner or later want to determine his voice type. Many beginner singers, however, believe that a voice type is determined solely by vocal range, which is the range of notes that a singer can produce. That is not true. Vocal range is only one of the factors determining one’s voice type.

Before anyone attempts to classify his voice, it is important to know that voice classification was introduced for classical (operatic) singing voices and it is used as an essential tool in determining singing roles and repertoires in opera. However, in contemporary music styles, this classification is applied loosely and is not important in determining a singer’s repertoire for two primary reasons. First, there is flexibility to transpose a song (the key signature of a song is changed) to suit the singer’s vocal abilities and to showcase his vocal strengths. In the world of opera, the classical pieces of music are almost always sung the way they were written and therefore, choosing a suitable voice type is crucial to the success of the performance and the vocal health of the performer. Second, the use of microphones permits contemporary singers to use parts of their voices that would not otherwise be used without amplification. Classical singers harness the power of classical singing techniques to be heard without amplification devices.

The standard classification system takes into consideration other voice characteristics in addition to the vocal range. These are:

Passaggio – the point where vocal quality changes from one register to another
Timbre – voice colour that can be described as bright, dark, strident, metallic, or ringing
Tessitura – a singer’s most comfortable or usable voice range
Vocal strength – a singer’s most powerful voice register (chest, middle or head voice)

This voice categorization is not strictly applied to contemporary music styles but is used more as a guideline. However, there are a few aspects to bear in mind before you try to categorize your own voice.

First, voice maturity is not defined by age but rather by the physiological changes that occur in both boys and girls going through puberty. Categorization should not take place before this maturation process is complete.

Second, previous singing experience and the use of good vocal techniques may affect the outcome of the categorization process. Inexperienced singers usually have smaller ranges than experienced singers. Voice classification can shift as singers develop a wider range and better voice quality.

Third, it is more important to develop healthy vocal habits than to strain or try to fit into a certain style. Voice types are a function of the size and structure of the larynx and the surrounding resonators: singers with larger vocal spaces have lower ranges and tessitura while singers with smaller spaces have higher ranges and tessitura. The physiology dictates voice style, and there is little we can do about it.

The classification system recognizes six basic voice types. Female voice types are the soprano, mezzo-soprano, alto (contralto). Male voice types are the tenor, baritone, and bass. Each style is characterized by vocal range, tessitura, and color. Sometimes, two voice types can possess the same voice range, but their voice quality and vocal strengths will decide the voice type.
If you want to know your voice type, find a good resource – whether it is a vocal coach, voice teacher, choir director, singing book, CD or reputable online resource – to guide you through the process.

 

 

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Why join a choir?

A choir is not for the nerds. It is people who love simply love music and like enjoying the rhythm of the song with their fellow members. But simply your love for music is not going to help you be a part of a choir. There are a few etiquette and tips that you need to keep in mind if you are planning to join a choir.

What do you need to know to join a choir?

Synchronization
Synchronization is the most important thing in choir singing. When the people in the choir are singing in different frequencies, synchronizing helps to produce harmony. A frequency mismatch or timing mismatch could destroy a beautiful harmony.

Tip: Always keep your ears open and make sure that you are in tune with everyone else. Make sure that your part blends with everyone else’s vocals and the sound of the instruments in the choir room.

Learn to Read music and improve your sight-singing skills
If you join a choir without having any knowledge about sight-singing, and someone gives you a few notes and asks you to sing it, you might feel like your breath has been sucked right out of your body. A lot of choral conductors lay emphasis on sight-reading because they believe that it indicates a singer’s overall knowledge of music.

Tip: A lot of books and websites provide useful information on how you can learn to read music and improve your sight reading skills.

Practice your Intervals
If you really want to be an excellent choir singer you can’t only focus on your part. That will make you look self-centered. Along with having a good sense of pitch, you must also listen to the other voices singing around you. This is the first step towards practicing your intervals and singing in tune. This will also prove to be useful when you are sight-reading your part in choral rehearsals.

Tip: Focus a lot on improving your listening skills and improve your sight-reading portions.

Learn to read foreign languages through music
The music itself is an expression of literature and it connects across cultures. Reading music in different languages can help you discover different cultures and communicate better through music. Many choirs will have members who can sing in multiple foreign languages. While you’re not expected to have prior experience in this, learning foreign languages can help you to learn at a faster pace and catch up with your fellow members quickly.

Tip: Watch foreign movies and learn a foreign language online from websites.

Be a good choir member by learning everyone’s part
You have worked very hard on your part and now you know it very well. That’s good but that’s not enough. While you really need to prioritize and focus on practicing your part and sing it well, you also need to pay attention to others part to cover up on the bits when needed.

Tip: Attend rehearsals regularly and be assertive and rehearse others parts well

Rehearse well and be a leader

Don’t just imitate and sing what the others are singing. Be confident and lead by example and rehearse well and always maintain the harmony.

Tip: Learn your music ahead of time and improve upon what you already know and always be confident and trust yourself!

 

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What is a choir?

 

Choirs can be defined according to different parameters ranging from their objectives and purposes, to the gender and age of its members.
According to its objectives, the choirs can be:

a) School: These are choirs instituted at school, with the aim of developing an integral education for children, aimed at stimulating aesthetic enjoyment, strengthening self-esteem, seeking Team achievement and emotional intelligence. Thus, the future social being is prepared from its first years to live together and to build in harmony with those around it.

b) Professionals: There is often a tendency to call professional choirs to impressively good work groups. However, it will be understood according to the definition of the Dictionary of the Royal Spanish Academy (2005), that the word profession means: “Employment, faculty or office that a persona has and exercises with right to retribution” Then, the professional choir is the one that charge for singing Not only the director (very recurring circumstance), but each and every one of its members.

Therapeutic: Are those whose purpose is focused on the stimulation of individuals who have some conditions, either behavioral or physical, seeking improvement or cure. In the first case, the positive emotional effects allow us to channel states that Aristotle already glimpsed in the catharsis. Don Campbell (1998), in his work “The Mozart Effect”, presents a chapter entitled: “Miracle Stories of Treatments and Cures” in which he dedicates almost 58 pages to the effect that music exerts on conditions ranging from burns to AIDS. Of course, singing is one of the modes indicated. This is the function of the therapeutic choir and from there we define it as such.

Academic: It is the choir that is constituted in music schools, conservatories and institutions devoted to pure music. Its main objective is the achievement of virtuosity in group singing according to historical trends and styles of composition. Its repertoire is of high level and demands a lot of those who integrate it.

Institutional: It is that vocal grouping that represents companies, universities, banks, schools of professionals, government entities, or social service associations such as firemen, police, etc. The function of this group is mainly public representation. Wherever the chorus is presented, it is the image of the company, and this implies: Free propaganda on radio, television and press, as well as a vision on the part of the most humane clients and consumers of said institution. In addition, the members of these groups feel an extra benefit, which fills them with pleasure by having more happy and productive workers.

Choir of Diletantes: It is a group formed by people who do not dedicate themselves to singing as a profession, but rather they do it for hobbies, for the simple fact of enjoying.


Symphonic Choir: Group of great mass that is dedicated to cultivate the symphonic genre – choral. The Choir Protocolar: That is dedicated to events of this tenor, the Sacro Choir: Whose objective is the song of exclusively religious music. It should also be added that there is currently a tendency to call the vocal groupings as vocal, experimental ensembles and others that seek to define their north in front of the audience.

It must not be forgotten, that the division according to the objectives and aims of the choir, does not justify mediocre work. It is understood that according to the maturity of the choir and the vocal quality of the members, each group will have a different performance.
Depending on the sex of the choirs, the group can be:

Clear Voices: Chorus formed by ladies only.

Dark Voices: Chorus formed only by gentlemen.

Mixed Voices: Chorus formed by ladies and gentlemen.

According to the ages of the members, the choir can be:

a) Adult Choir: Made up of mature people, who have already passed their adolescence stage. The voice is in full performance. This is the chorus of greater sonorous possibilities for its harmonic and extension wealth. (It goes from the most serious note that a deep bass can make, to the most acute of a light soprano)

b) Children’s or Children’s choir. It is made up of kindergartens that have not yet been reached by adolescence. The voice changes have not affected them. Especially in males, since this one is more noticeable in gentlemen than in ladies. Its sound is very sweet, almost as transparent and crystal clear.

c) Juvenile Choir: It is the chorus of young people in adolescence. We usually see him in high school. Voices are not what they should be, they are still fogged up and their records are very short. They break easily: “The cock goes”. However with a good work of vocal technique and the choice of an adequate repertoire, many achievements can be made.

 

 

 

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Air Force Academy Choir

Over the years we have seen more and more choirs appear on shows like “America’s Got Talent” or “The X Factor.”  One of my favorite performances by a choir so far is this one by the Air Force Academy choir.  Seriously awesome, check it out!