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SUMMARY 10/2 and NEXT WEEK 10/9

posted Oct 4, 2018, 3:31 PM by Kathy Scheel   [ updated Oct 5, 2018, 2:08 PM ]
SUMMARY - 10/2

  1. We kicked off Christmas Chorus and welcomed eight guests:
  2. Beckner, Angela - baritone, friend of Denise Taylor
  3. Beranbaum, Frances - tenor, from Meetup
  4. Bettis, LeaAnn - lead, friend of Karen Wildman
  5. Burgess, Paula - lead, former OSC
  6. Dodge, Sharon - lead, former Christmas Chorus
  7. Mishey, Elaine - baritone, friend of Karen Wildman
  8. Schie, Kathi - lead, former OSC
  9. Sims, Shelly - lead, daughter of Toni Roush
There are additional new guests expected next week, so be ready to meet more new singers.  Riser Buddies, remember to send a nice card to your buddy, help answer questions, be her friend.  These are future member of OSC!  Speaking of new members.....

We welcomed new member: JENN STEINMETZ!

CHRISTMAS MUSIC:  With just 80 minutes/week to work on Christmas music each week, I will focus on just 2-3 songs/week and will let you know via Kathy's Korner what songs to prepare.  Work as much as you can on your own time so we can use our time together working on building chord unity and less on teaching notes.  The tracks in the Music Library will be your most useful tool.  Always bring your recording devices/smart phones to the risers to get recordings of your section, or the whole chorus, the warmups, or just yourself.  It's another great tool for you to be your own best voice coach!

Sectionals are a great (and fun) way to catch problem areas so contact others in your section to set up a time when you can sing thru the songs and make improvements.  Section leaders are not the only ones who can schedule a sectional away from chorus; ANYONE can lead the charge!  You could even invite some singers from other sections to sing along with you part of the time.  YOU can set the standard for excellence!

PERFORMANCES:  Diane Watson is the Performance Coordinator, responsible for negotiating and working out logistics with our clients; however, I'm the one who polls the singers to see if we have enough available to perform.  We cannot confirm with the clients until I've heard from everyone, so it's very important to respond to emails as quickly as possible (only to me - not to Diane, not to all).  Generally speaking, I expect that people will check your emails every 48 hours to keep current with all the news - performances, show, sectionals, etc.  

QUALITY CONTROL:  OSC's quality control program always starts with each singer doing a self-evaluation.  You record yourself and review it for accuracy, using a word sheet (i.e., attached word sheet for After I'm Gone).  This starts right away on songs and should be completed within 3-4 weeks of the introduction of a song.  Everyone should be at 100% by now on After I'm Gone since we started it in July.  It's now time for you to send a recording to your section leader/director for feedback.  This is to make sure you are singing the songs as accurately as possible (notes & words).  Thanks to the three awesome leads (JoAnn Perry, Toni Roush, and Elaine Rosenberg) who've sent me your recordings; I look forward to everyone's participation in this program.  It's always great to hear the voices that make up this chorus!  

On Tuesday night, I introduced an idea that the majority of you liked: singing in an octet in front of the chorus and getting immediate feedback.  So we'll try that in about 2 weeks and see how it goes. With our current membership of 32 singers plus some new prospective members, we should be able to complete everyone within 20 minutes.  If you miss that evening, you will be required to send a recording directly to me for review.  

ATTENDANCE:  The single most important thing you can do as a singer in Oregon Spirit Chorus is attend all rehearsals and coaching sessions.  When you miss a rehearsal, it's up to you to find out what you missed and catch up before the next rehearsal.  This allows us to keep moving forward and reduce the amount of repetition (and frustration) for those who were present.  

LEARNING SONGS:  The best/proven method of learning the material fast is by following the steps in "How to Learn a Song Quickly".  I've attached it at the bottom of this post for your convenience.  

A neat new tool for helping you practice is the Amazing Slow-Downer, a free program can slow the tempo of a song without changing the key!  That's pretty amazing technology!  Here are a couple of links so you can download and use it right away.
  • Download:  https://download.cnet.com/Amazing-Slow-Downer-for-Windows/3000-2139_4-10076514.html
  • Video: https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=amazing+slow+downer&qpvt=amazing+slow+downer&view=detail&mid=80E652B4E9FA8722375280E652B4E9FA87223752&&FORM=VRDGAR  (Note:  Delete the space in this web address when copying into your browser).

UNITY:  The recording I made of After I'm Gone on Tuesday night reveals several note and tuning errors.  There are lots of tricky/quick chromatics in this fun uptune, so practice it carefully, paying close attention to instant accuracy.  Unity is about more than just singing the interpretive plan together, it's unity in all things:  breathing plan, resonating space (pre-yawn breath every time by every singer) so there is a blended sound of all voices and no voices sticking out, singing pure target vowels and diphthongs, energy, dynamics, breathing.  Two simple things you can do make an immediate improvement in unity are: 
  • KNOW the songs forwards & backwards (so you're not looking at music)
  • WATCH the Director (so you can see the attacks/releases, dynamics, etc.)

NEXT WEEK - 10/9
  • Arrive early so you can get visiting/meetings done and be ON the risers by 6:30 (with no nagging).  
  • Songs - These 3 songs are new to everyone, so work on them and we'll make some fabulous chords!  
    • Mary Did You Know
    • Joy to the World
    • O, Holy Night (check to be sure you've got the 7-page version)
  • A weekly 10-minute barbershop education session will be presented at the beginning of the evening. Since only 11 people attended last Saturday's special session, I'll do a review of what the judges are looking for in a performance and what it means to sing at a  B+ level.  
  • The break at 8:00 is only for the Christmas Chorus singers who do not wish to stay.  Everyone else will remain on the risers so we can continue rehearsal.  We lost almost 20 minutes this past week, so let's maximize our singing time!
  • I will let everyone know about the plans for November 17-18.  Circle the date on your home calendars so your family knows you'll be gone singing!
  • Holiday Harmony Show - Co-Chairs Karen Wildman & Norine Ask will give a brief overview of the show plans and will let everyone know where help is still needed. This is a big fundraising event for OSC and it takes a village, so raise your hand to volunteer for something.  
  • Take Personal Responsibility (TPR).  Be accountable to yourself and to all your sisters in song.

Kathy Scheel,
Oct 4, 2018, 3:50 PM
Kathy Scheel,
Oct 4, 2018, 3:31 PM