Kings Chorale

Information Sheet

The Choir Year –– The ‘choir year’ is basically divided into two terms – September through Christmas and January through April and sometimes into May. The choir rehearses weekly at the Berwick United Church in Berwick. Rehearsals run from 7:30 to 9:30. The director is committed to finishing promptly at 9:30 and asks that singers commit themselves to being prompt for the start of rehearsal.

Organization (Board of Directors) – The choir is governed by a Board of Directors elected from the choir membership. All musical decisions remain the prerogative of the Artistic Director who welcomes suggestions from the singers.

Registration – A registration fee of $40 per term per singer is charged ($75 if the entire year is paid at the beginning of the season.The registration fee goes to pay for membership in the Nova Scotia Choral Federation (a major source of music for the choir), music which must be purchased, honoraria for the conductor and accompanist, as well as incidental expenses incurred throughout the year, particularly in relation to concerts. Arleen Wentzell, treasurer, is responsible for collecting registration fees.

Music – Each singer receives a package of music when s/he joins the choir. Each package is numbered and all pieces of music within that package should bear the same number. (Please check your music carefully when you obtain your package to ensure that this is so. Please report any discrepancies immediately to Phyllis Bennett, librarian.) Each singer is responsible for her or his own music. All music must be returned at the end of the term. The librarian will hound any singer with outstanding music until it is returned or paid for. Your music number also corresponds to a folder number. When folders are distributed near concert time, please be sure to get the proper one. When music is collected at the end of the term, you should return all music with your own folder.

We will do everything we can to ensure that you have a copy of everything on the list. Sometimes you will be short a copy of something because we have not received a complete shipment from the distributor. That is not the fault of the librarian (who has usually noted such shortages on the outside of the envelopes). We would ask that you share music until the complete shipment is received and know that as soon as the music is received it will be passed on to you.

Outfits (Uniforms) – Many years ago the choir adopted a uniform look. While that look may not suit every individual in style and/or taste, it provides the choir with a “look” which works on stage. Remember that this is really a stage costume and not something which you would expect to wear on a daily basis.

Men – Tuxedos (or black suits), white shirts, black bow ties, black socks and black shoes.

Women – Choir dress and black shoes. Choir blouses. Sonya Jones is the choir seamstress and had made each of these dresses. She will also take care of fitting new members. Sonya has put in an amazing amount of time and effort into these dresses. Please treat them carefully!

Fundraising – The majority of our money comes to us through the registration charged each choir member. Some revenue is generated through concert receipts; however, this is sometimes awkward since we cannot always charge admission to our concerts because of their venues. In those instances we must rely on a free-will offering. Often this generates less revenue than the expenses incurred.

At times, when venue permits, members of the choir will be called on to sell tickets to concerts. This is crucial to our financial stability and singers are asked to take this responsibility seriously. Our very best advertising is through the excitement and enthusiasm of our singers.

Kings Chorale regularly purchases Grocery Cards for the Atlantic Superstore. Wilma and Richard Haworth graciously look after this. They have a sign up sheet so you can order cards in advance; they set up shop at each rehearsal. This is a huge undertaking for them and means the choir doesn’t have to do other fundraising such as selling raffle tickets. It is an easy way to support the choir without it costing you anything other than what you normally spend on groceries

Post-It Notes – Every rehearsal has a rhythm. That rhythm can be quickly sidetracked by too many questions in the middle of rehearsal. You will find Post-It notes in your music package. If you notice something that you would like to go over again and we haven’t gotten to it, please leave a Post-It Note on the director’s music at break or at the end of rehearsal. On it please indicate the part (Soprano/Alto/Tenor/Bass), the page number, the measure number and the problem. Please use a separate note for each problem. Then the director will be able to include it in planning for the next rehearsal.

If you do find it necessary to ask a question during rehearsal (and you may well!) please be ready to state the page number, system (top, middle, or bottom), part, and problem. It can easily bog down the rehearsal while you look for the problem spot

A final note – Choir is a “team” activity and there is no ‘I’ in team. Each of us is equally important in the process. Please be encouraging, helpful, and patient with each other during the process. We are all there to produce the best possible music!

While we all recognize that choir is a social activity, it is very important that you don’t carry on personal conversations during rehearsal. Save it for the break or afterwards. It can be very frustrating for your fellow choristers if they cannot hear instructions over your conversation.

Bring a pencil to rehearsal and us it liberally to mark things you need to remember! That will save lots of rehearsal time and allow us to create a better performance.