The choirs run on a donation only basis – there is no set fee for members. Steve is a “House For Duty” Vicar, which means he lives in a Church Of England owned house, but does not receive a salary for his work as Vicar. Donations help him with the costs of hiring premises, photocopying and printing costs, folders and stationery – and also his time in choosing and arranging songs for the choir, and creating rehearsal videos.
Do I need to be able to read music?
Short answer is “no.” Steve uses his “Sing And Repeat” method of teaching the various parts of the songs, so we only use lyric sheets. There are occasions when he might explain how music works, because this gives a good foundation to understanding how songs work.
Will I have to sing any solo parts?
Steve will never put anybody on the spot. Our choir rehearsals are designed to be “stress free zones!” You may feel at some point that you would like to try a solo part, but he will leave you to make the decision. Steve teaches performance techniques and how to use a vocal mic for those who would like to give it a try.
Do you have rehearsal videos available?
Yes we do. We have a growing number of videos being added to this sight for members only. Once you become a member of one of our choirs, Steve will give you the link that you will need to access the page. Videos are being added regularly, so you can check back and do some preparation before rehearsals if you would like to
What age range of people do you accept?
Steve is happy to consider any age from teens upwards. Our choirs have a mix of ages and backgrounds and this gives a good family feel to our rehearsals. We are called “Community Choirs,” so the clue is in the name. For us, it’s not just about the singing, but about being a family together, making new fiends, appreciating each others company and enjoying singing together
Will I have to audition for a place in the choir?
Certainly not! Anyone is welcome to come along. We welcome people who think they can’t sing, and those who think they can! Seriously, we are not looking for the next Maria Carey or Luciano Pavarotti, just people who enjoy a good sing without heavy expectations. Obviously Steve will encourage you to develop your singing voice and will give you tips and techniques on how to be the best you can be.
How often do you meet for rehearsals?
Each of our choirs meet once a week during school term time. We usually continue through half term also. That means that through the year we have a Spring Term, a Summer Term and a Winter Term. Each Term last between 12 and 14 weeks. At the end of each Term we have opportunities to perform in concerts for charity. And the choirs choose which charity to support. Over the years, with our choirs in West Sussex and Buckinghamshire, we have raised thousands of pounds for local charities.
What kind of music do you sing?
We sing a range of music including rock, pop, gospel and soul music, some contemporary and some more traditional. We have been singing songs from The Greatest Showman, and many other pop classics by Sting, U2, Boney M, Mariah Carey, Ben E. King, Leonard Cohen, Bryan Adams, Sam Cooke, Stevie Winwood, the Beach Boys, Sonny & Cher… and also songs from musicals such as “My Fair Lady,” and “Oliver”. We enjoy singing “rounds” for fun and even sing one song in Latin!
Will I have to learn the songs off by heart?
No, not necessarily, but learning a few is helpful, especially if we have a little choreography to do! Don’t worry, we don’t do much “moving” – accept to the rhythm of the music! You will be provided with a block folder into which you keep your song lyrics, so we use these in our performances, but occasionally sing one or two songs without the words! It’s not as scary as it sounds! And it’s good for the little brain cells!
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