Rehearsals

Home Our Story Membership Rehearsals Concerts Musical Director Choral Festivals

Rehearsals

Rehearsals are held in the MacKillop Senior College Hall and commence at 6.30pm sharp each Monday during school terms.

Please help with setting up chairs before rehearsals and always put away your chair after, and help restore the hall to normal. This is everyone’s responsibility.

Singers must arrive early to read notices on the white board and collect any new music, and sign attendance sheets. These are located on the left front side of the stage in a different coloured folder for each section.

You will receive music required for rehearsals and performances from our music librarian. All music that is no longer required must be returned to her immediately. All markings on music must be made lightly in pencil only, and rubbed out before music is returned to the librarian.

Rehearsals commence with a warm-up which includes gentle physical exercises, vocalise and rounds. These must be done quietly.

Bring all music and a pencil. It is imperative to bring a bottle of water to sip during rehearsals. At least one litre should be consumed.

Please ensure you sit between two experienced choristers. Later you may be moved where your voice blends best.

Rehearsals normally conclude around 9.00pm.

Attendance

Singing in a choir is a group activity involving teamwork.  Choristers must make a commitment to attend rehearsals regularly.  An attendance register is kept.  Those choristers who fail to attend regularly will be under-prepared for concerts and will be asked not to perform.  The Musical Director needs to be aware of each chorister’s availability when planning for concert rehearsals and performances. Please return your concert commitment sheets promptly.

As a matter of courtesy please follow these procedures:

If you are unable to attend one rehearsal please advise your Section Leader.

If you plan to be absent for more than one week please fill in a ‘Leave of Absence’ form.

Performances

In order to maintain the choir’s high standards it is essential that all Choristers know the repertoire and are confident in singing by the time of performance. The aim is to ensure all heads out of the music, with a good sight line to the conductor. For those needing extra help in learning music, a link to a webpage originally created by one of our members is here.

The venue rehearsals or final rehearsals are mandatory in order for a chorister to be able to participate in a performance. The Musical Director reserves the right to the final decision on who is ready to perform.

Uniform for Performances (unless advised otherwise):

Ladies

Long black skirt/pants to the top of the shoes (no shorter).

White/black shirt or blouse with collar and short/long sleeves. Colour and style depend on season and occasion.

Black shoes and hose.

Hastings Choristers vest (handed out before performance and returned after performance).

Minimal jewellery.

Men

Black trousers.

White/black shirt or blouse with collar and short/long sleeves. Colour and style depend on season and occasion.

Black shoes and socks.

Hastings Choristers vest (handed out before performance and returned after performance).

Please note:

No perfume or after-shave to be worn. Many people have allergies which are aggravated by fragrances.

All concert music to be in a black plastic A4 display folder organised in order of performance.

Care of Voice

Some tips for keeping your voice in good shape (from Dr. Margaret Pride):

Drink plenty of water.

Exclude caffeine and alcoholic beverages which dry out the vocal folds.

Sit next to a singer whose voice does not make yours feel tired or strained.

Warm-up vocally before rehearsal so you are not completely dependent on the warm-ups offered before the repertoire is begun.

Sing in the shower. The steam helps lubricate the vocal folds and assists you to sing more freely.

Sing with good posture; sit erect from hips up. This supports your voice, taking the strain off the vocal folds.

Constantly check your shoulders, neck and jaw are free and relaxed.

Don’t out-sing your neighbour; it’s poor choir etiquette, sounds dreadful and puts strain on your vocal mechanism.

Practice your music between rehearsals.

Avoid menthol or eucalypt based lozenges, as they dry out the vocal folds.

A Good Chorister Always....

watches the conductor
has a pencil in hand at rehearsals and uses it to mark the score
arrives early and reads the notices on the white board
has music ready and in order
sits in an upright position on the edge of the seat - never leaning back!
sips water frequently to keep vocal folds hydrated
is a good listener - to the conductor and the rest of the choir
saves chatter for the breaks
practises at home
gives feedback to the section leaders