Sunday Singing, Choir Style!

Two Sundays ago, our little choir sang in church for the 2nd time. This church is contemporary, and thus, so is the choir, [so if your ears can only bear to abide the choral likes of Mozart's Requiem (my favorite performance from my classical college concert choir ♥) or John Rutter (my fave from high school ensemble days ♥) you can skip playing the video clips below. ;-)]

Choir at our church is a big commitment - six weeks of Wednesday night rehearsals for one Sunday of performance. Unlike our Praise Team (which you audition to join) anyone can be a part of the choir! :-) That makes it wonderful, b/c everyone there has a true heart of praise they want to share, and also a lot of work, b/c not everyone is a trained musician. For Praise Team, we each get our music (via this awesome app - Planning Center) to review on our own before having one rehearsal together the Wednesday night before we sing that following Sunday morning. It's also easier, b/c we have one soprano, one alto (me :-)), one tenor, and one bass each week. I pick out my own harmony part by ear, we put it together Wednesday night in person, (surprisingly, very rarely does the blend need much tweaking!) and we're set. You can't do that with a choir: multiple altos can't pick out their own slightly varying alto parts. :-P Everyone needs sheet music, and everyone needs to learn the same notes for their parts. That takes rehearsal time and quality repetition for those who have been out of stage-singing for awhile. It's sooo beautiful to have all these voices come together!!! ♥ But it just doesn't happen often, b/c it *IS* such a time commitment for many people who only occasionally want to be in the musical groove. For our Easter choir, we had around 50 members! This time, we had just over 20. But they were 20 who truly wanted to be there & share their gift!!! It was a lot of work, but it was precious...and we made it fun! ;-)

We sang four songs: God Be Praised, Revelation Song, The Victor's Crown, and God of This City. [Sidebar: God of This City was the only complete choral start to finish; all the rest were solos with the choir coming in later. It seems like this is how most non-classical choirs work now. Is this b/c of Glee? (I remember thinking how bizarre it was, when I first saw Glee - a show about "choir", that they really weren't a choir; they were just backing up solos. :-P)] We also found that no matter how the stage was mic'ed, we often needed extra part support on mic in addition to the choir; so I was pulled down in God Be Praised to hit the alto harder, and my friend, Cheryl, did it during my solo, since I couldn't leave the melody. It didn't stand out; it just made the blend much fuller. :-)

I only have two videos, but here you go! Here's my solo song, The Victor's Crown:

And God Be Praised - the soloists are our worship leader & the senior pastor's wife; the choir comes in at 2:48: