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SUMMARY 6/19 and MORE !

posted Jun 20, 2018, 8:43 AM by Kathy Scheel   [ updated Jun 21, 2018, 5:36 PM ]
Thanks to all of you who helped with the open house!  We had a total of eight guests, five of whom were first-timers.  f you are a riser buddy, please be sure to follow up with these ladies with a personal note, offer to help answer their questions, and let them know how much you love singing in OSC!
  1. LeaAnn Bettis - tenor
  2. Marilyn Ellis - bass (passed audition)
  3. Jenn Steinmetz - bass (passed audition)
  4. Carilyn Ellis - baritone (passed audition)
  5. Charlotte Nickolaus - lead (new)
  6. Isolde Knapp - baritone (new)
  7. Angela Beckner - baritone (new)
  8. Karen George - bass (new)
If you have someone you'd like to invite, encourage them to come next week, as it will be the last full rehearsal for a few weeks and they can get the materials and information to get started on the new songs.  Let me know if you have a guest coming so I can meet with them for a few minutes ahead of time to determine voice placement.

Attending Harmony College Northwest (HCNW) last weekend was such a tremendous learning experience for me!  Thank you for funding my attendance. I got great reminders of several vocal exercises and rehearsal techniques, new ideas for marketing our chorus, membership growth, and so much more!  I will be encouraging everyone to attend next year on June 14-16, 2019.  Look at this link for reasons why:  https://www.harmonycollege.org/who-should-attend-harmony-college.html AND - if 80% of our chorus attends, we can get free coaching from top-level coaches at no extra cost.  Registration includes all the amazing classes, meals, lodging, and the amazing Saturday night show.  

Here are the vocal exercises that we did last night; do these regularly to build your skills:
  • Stemple Exercises - do each one twice (and repeat two times daily):
    • Sustain the sound "EEE" for as long and soft as possible on the musical note F.  
      • Goal: 45 seconds with an uninterrupted tone flow. 
    • Slowly glide from your lowest note to your highest note on the sound "OHH" as softly as possible.  
      • Goal: no voice breaks.
    • Slowly glide from your highest note to your lowest note on the sound "OHH" as softly as possible.  
      • Goal: no voice breaks.
    • The softer the better.
    • Perfect for a first warmup of the day and a cool-down after singing.
    • Used properly, these exercises will develop vocal freedom, breath support, and power.
  • Relaxed, tension-free tongue - strive for a totally relaxed tongue that lights gently flat in your mouth.
    • Sing an EE and notice the position of the tongue - it curls up tightly in the back.  Record yourself.  
    • Now  relax the tongue so it lays flat and sing the EE again.  Record yourself again. 
    • Notice how your voice is richer and fuller and more resonant.  
    • Do this exercises on each of the primary vowels (EH, EE, AH, OH, OO) , and try it on various notes.  
    • Be your own voice teacher and explore the ways you can improve your own vocal placement.
  • Tonal Center - This was especially helpful on All the Way, where we need work on keeping the song in tune.
    • Sing a few phrases all on the tonic note (the key of the song).  If you're not sure what that is, contact your section leader.
    • Record yourself singing that tonic note for a few phrases.
    • Now sing your own part along with that recording and notice if you are maintaining the tonal center (staying in that key), or whether there are some places where you are singing a little below the tonic.  
    • Repeating this exercise will train you to keep that tonal center.  
  • Interval Training - Singing note-to-note with a high degree of accuracy.
    • Record yourself singing a song all the way through, then listen to your recording and mark your music (or word sheet) to check your accuracy.  
    • You've all got great ears and will be able to tell whether you are truly in tune - it's sometimes harder to determine while you are singing because you hear something quite different inside your head.  
    • After you've marked your music, go to those sections of the music and check your intervals using your PanoTuner app to check your intervals.  
  • Airflow - Here's an easy way to train yourself to use an even, consistent airflow while singing
    • Bubble a note, then change to an MM, then open to a vowel.  
    • Strive to keep the same airflow and space on each part of the exercise.  
    • Everything is relaxed and open as you bubble, so when you change to the MM, keep that same airflow and core support, then when you change to the vowel, keep up the great work.
    • Do this on each of the primary vowels (EH, EH, AH, OH, OO) to train yourself to keep the airflow and space consistent.
  • DO YOU WANT TO SING AT A CONSISTENT B+ LEVEL?   GREAT!  ME, TOO!  Do these exercises daily and you'll be on your way!
  • The learning tracks for "Consider Yourself" are on the website (music library) and I ask/expect you to know this song so we can welcome in our new members with joyful singing.  If you're still looking at the sheet music, set aside an hour to memorize it.  Get together with others in your section for a mini-rehearsal.  You can do this!
  • Coaches are an important element in helping us reach our musical goals, so it's important that we have ALL voices at these important sessions.  Mark your calendars now and hold these dates "sacred" so you don't miss out on this incredible training from the best in our craft.  We will be working on Friday evenings and all day Saturdays (to allow those who have Sunday commitments to not miss anything):
    • November 16-17:  Sandy Marron, Sound Judge
    • February 8-9:  Tori Postma, Showmanship Judge
    • March 8-9:  Lea Beverley, Expression Judge
      • This is Advance (retreat) weekend at Canby Grove Conference Center
    • April 5-6:  Sandy Marron, Sound Judge
    • In addition, Ryan Heller will be working with us on a few Tuesday evenings.
  • Learn the following songs; the goal is to know them by July 17.  That's a month away and it takes about an hour of uninterrupted time to learn a song, so you'll surely be fabulous by then!  Incorporate your very best vocal exercises so you are building strong (B+ level) habits into these songs right away:
    • Sister Act
    • Fun In Just One Lifetime
    • Forgotten Dreams/Long Ago & Far Away
  • Summer Schedule (these are all on the chorus calendar):
    • JULY
      • 3 - Those who are performing on July 7th must attend; everyone else can rehearse on your own at home.
      • 10 - "dark" (no rehearsal scheduled, but you can get together with others in your section if you want to work on the new songs)
      • 17 - everyone there, sing thru the three new songs (noted above).
      • 24 - section rehearsals all evening to work on unity (not teach notes - you do that on your own time)
      • 28-29 - Oregon Days - register: www.sairegion12.org 
      • 31 - "dark" 
    • AUGUST
      • 7  - regular rehearsal
      • 14 - section rehearsals all evening
      • 18 - garage sale at McNary Estates in Keizer, let Leah Law know if you can help or have tables, etc.
      • 21 - perform Star-Spangled Banner at Volcanoes Stadium, then regular rehearsal, introduce new songs*
        • The songs may change, depending on some decisions I'll be making soon, so watch for updates!
      • 24-26 - beach weekend, contact Eileen Kemp if interested
      • 28 - "dark"
NEXT WEEK (6/27):
  • Know Consider Yourself by heart (no sheet music)
  • Work up to the next level:
    • Can't Buy Me Love (note-perfect, please)
    • Happy Together (tempo)
    • Peace on Earth  (clean intervals, note accuracy)
    • All the Things You Are (tonal center, finesse, passion)
    • Who's Sorry Now (characterization, phrase endings, tone flow)
    • All the Way (tonal center, intervals)
    • Somebody to Love (sectional unity, listening)
    • Sweet Dreams  (choreography, dynamics)
    • And So it Goes (note accuracy)
    • Star-Spangled Banner
  • Watch this video:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FStqHThEY9M . Bring a water bottle to the next rehearsal.
  • Try very hard to attend rehearsals; we sure missed 13 members last night.  YOU make a big difference!