Choruses seek to foster an open, welcoming culture, but some practices can exclude and cause pain for transgender singers. Here are some steps your chorus can take to avoid them.
For any chorus, finding the right repertoire can be an imposing task. But the process is especially difficult for community choruses. Why is the search so hard for them, how do they deal with the obstacles, and what more can be done to help these ensembles locate the music that’s right for them?
In our Winter 2017-18 issue of The Voice, Chorus America spoke to conductors and publishers about how to address the challenge of finding quality repertoire for community choruses. So what are some specific pieces that these publishers and composers would recommend for these groups? We asked a wide range of publishers and composers in the field to recommend one work from their own catalogue that they felt is especially suited to community choruses. The list we compiled represents a broad spectrum of cultural traditions, orchestrations, and voicings—including links to websites for more information when available.
In creating a chorus culture that is welcoming to transgender singers, terminology can be something that some choral leaders may need catching up on. This list of key terms below supplements our article in the Winter 2017-18 Voice on making choruses welcoming for transgender singers.
Each month, Chorus America profiles one of our members in our Meet A Member interview series. To mark the season of giving, we often change things up a little bit for December by speaking with Chorus America donors. This year, we spoke to Hussein Janmohamed and Joan Szymko, the two composers donating compositions for Chorus America’s 2018 Commission Consortiums.
The December holidays are synonymous with choral music, and thousands of people in North America celebrate with singing in or attending concerts that feature timeless carols and familiar favorites. But some choruses are breaking away from the tried-and-true holiday concert formula. We spoke with several choral leaders whose ensembles are highlighting lesser-known traditions, or using holiday themes to explore more universal concepts or address timely social issues.
Toronto Mendelssohn Choir director of marketing and community outreach Anne Longmore has an unusual dual career—college professor and arts administrator, thanks to a big move.
Alexander Lloyd Blake has plenty of jobs to keep himself busy.
Blake is the choir director for the LA County High School for the Arts, and principal assistant conductor of the National Children's Chorus’ Los Angeles ensemble. But that’s not all. “I'm an assistant conductor at First Congregational Church LA—that's a new one,” Blake recounts. “And I'm studying for my qualifying exams for my doctorate in choral conducting at USC.”
In an effort to renew our understanding of the roles, responsibilities, and challenges choral conductors encounter and how they affect the choral ecosystem, Chorus America undertook a new study, updating survey findings from a decade ago. The results highlight both important challenges and reasons to feel confident about the health of the profession.
This article is part of a series highlighting new choral repertoire that can be used by a wide range of choirs to address different community issues.
A community chorus is held together by its singers’ commitment to each other and to the group. But what happens when a volunteer singer becomes disruptive to that community spirit—and won’t comply with repeated requests to change their ways? Does your chorus have a carefully spelled-out dismissal procedure, or do you handle things on a case-by-case basis? Or are you sitting there crossing your fingers and hoping it won’t happen, because there is no precedent in recent memory?