Yes – you heard it right!!  Don’t give up that Wednesday 8-10pm rehearsal slot just yet….Graham is about to enter the world of virtual choir mastery with our first online rehearsals!

Please bear in mind that due to current technology limitations it won’t be possible for everyone to hear each other singing, but that does mean you can really let go and no-one will hear any mistakes!

We thought we’d start really simply and sort out familiarity with the technology in the first session.

Even if you consider yourself to be a technophobe, if you use an iPad or a smartphone you can do this!!  It might take a bit of practise at first, but we would urge you to give it a go.  Help will be at hand and many people will be new to it and unsure at first.  In the very worst case if you can’t get the computer to work, you can even phone in and listen to the rehearsal instead!  It’s a great opportunity to keep singing and to see your friends in these days and weeks of Social Distancing.

You will shortly all be receiving an email with an invitation to a rehearsal slot with a link.  At the scheduled rehearsal time for your voice section, all you will need to do is click on that link and follow instructions to Join the Meeting.

Initially the rehearsals will be timed as follows:-

  • 8pm – 8.30pm – Sopranos
  • 8.30pm – 9pm – Altos
  • 9pm – 9.30pm – Tenors
  • 9.30pm – 10pm – Basses

To facilitate this online rehearsal we will make use of some free software called Zoom.  You can join the rehearsal from your phone, ipad or computer/laptop, but the experience will be better if you can do it from a laptop so that the camera is steady and you can view the full screen of menu options.

As the first session will be a trial session, mainly to familiarise you all with the technology, Graham will start with a warmup and will rehearse choruses from The Messiah, so please have your scores handy when you join the meeting. In future weeks we plan to invite everyone to join at 7.30 so they can say hello before rehearsals start, just as we normally do, then it will be a question of signing off and back in again if your slot is not the first one.

If the rehearsal sessions are successful, you will also be receiving a music score PDF as Graham would like to try some new pieces.

If anyone would like to participate but is worried about whether they can make it work or has any questions please contact Ruth or Graham beforehand, depending on your problem.

Now all you have to do is watch out for that email containing the link inviting you to join the rehearsal!

But what is happening with The Messiah…?

Obviously a concert in May will no longer be possible.  We are currently reviewing alternative dates to see if it will be possible to postpone it rather than cancel it completely.  Please watch this space for further news on this once we have considered all the options.

…and the concert at The Royal Albert Hall?

In terms of the proposed concert at The Royal Albert Hall, here is an announcement from the Joint Concert Committee:

The Joint Choirs Committee (JCC) met last week to talk about plans for the Royal Albert Hall Concert project for 2022. You will be aware that we have been jointly seeking sponsorship for this event and up until 2 weeks ago had received a very positive response both from potential sponsors and from all three choirs. The concept has clearly generated a lot of excitement and enthusiasm. However, things have changed over the last couple of weeks and the JCC regretfully agreed that it is no longer appropriate for us to actively seek sponsorship or plan for a concert of this size whilst also having to respond to the challenges of coronavirus. We are determined not to lose sight of the project and plan to regroup in the Autumn with a view to making an application to the Royal Albert Hall as part of their 2023 programme. So please watch this space we will keep you briefed and hopefully get the project back on track as the future becomes a bit more certain.

..and what about the Summer Tour?

it is still early days to make a firm decision on the Summer Tour.  Please watch for a further update/statement from the Tour Committee in the next post.

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That’s it for now – see you (ish) on Wednesday….!