The National Youth Choir of Canada (NYCC) Auditions – NOW OPEN

The National Youth Choir of Canada (NYCC) auditions are NOW OPEN! Are you a young singer or know someone aged 19-26 who might be interested in this life-changing choral experience? Visit www.nycc.ca/auditions for all the details and to meet the amazing Artistic Team for 2022, led by Jean-Sébastien Vallée. Deadline to audition is Oct 15, 2021. #NYCC2022

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Halifax Gay Men’s Chorus – Open Rehearsal – Come and Join us!

Do you sing in the shower, car, every chance you get?  Why not check us out?  The Halifax Gay Men’s Chorus offers an opportunity to sing as part of a welcoming community of queer folks, singing TTBB (lower voice) music.  An open rehearsal will take place at St. Andrew’s United Church, corner of Robie and Coburg Road, on Thursday, September 23, beginning at 7 PM.  Doors open at 6:30.  For more information visit our website www.hgmc.ca and to preregister contact Dan at membership@hgmc.ca

LET THEM SING!

Singing is a vital component of elementary school music education. In Canada three times more children under the age of 18 sing in a choir than play hockey. Singing and choir are barrier free activities and how important it is, therefore, to have such experiences available to students



A sincere thank you to this group of New Glasgow, Nova Scotia students, who collaboratively wrote and performed “Without Our Voices” to share how they feel about singing being prohibited in schools throughout the fall of 2020. Expressing themselves creatively, they truly show us that, “where words fail, music speaks”. Annika Murray Cameron Boulter Campbell Hayman Caroline Boulter (violin) Justin Skinner (piano) Kara Taylor William Austin #ChoirIsOurSport #LetThemSing Singing in schools continues to be prohibited in Nova Scotia schools as of December 3, 2020. 
We continue to seek clarity and consistency in Nova Scotia policies around singing.
Knowing that choral singing is a vital part of Nova Scotia communities, the Nova Scotia Choral Federation has been advocating for safe choral singing in community, faith and school settings.
Watch our full presentation to Dr. Strang here:

Meeting with Dr. Strang
Nova Scotia Guidelines

Please share!

CHOIR IS OUR SPORT

Knowing that choral singing is a vital part of Nova Scotia communities, the Nova Scotia Choral Federation has been advocating for safe choral singing in community, faith and school settings.

Currently there is no singing allowed in schools even as sports activities are not only permitted, they take place without social distancing and mask free. Singing and choir are barrier free activities and how important it is, therefore, to have such experiences available to students

We continue to seek clarity and consistency in Nova Scotia policies around singing.

Watch our full presentation to Dr. Strang here: https://youtu.be/hRoBOd0-uCQ

View our guidelines for community choral singing here: https://nscf.ca/covid-19-guidelines-resources/

Please share!

A Farewell for Maureen MacLean from Middleton Choral Society

On the evening of July 8, members of the Middleton Choral Society gathered at a private home for a reception to honour their retiring director Maureen MacLean. Maureen, who began as the community choir’s accompanist, has been director for 43 years. A musical icon in Middleton, she was a successful elementary Music teacher there; until this year she also served as president of the Annapolis Valley Centre of the Royal Canadian College of Organists (RCCO). She is a valued piano teacher still, as well as organist at St. Alphonsus Catholic Church in Bridgetown.

The choir presents two formal concerts each year, a seasonal one at Christmas and one in the spring. As well, an informal program has been presented at Mountain Lea Lodge each December. The choir’s dedicated membership is, on average, 35 unauditioned singers, with excellent distribution in all four vocal parts. Maureen’s devotion to the NSCF Choir Camp in Berwick each summer is legendary, having attended the earliest one. Each year Maureen makes sure that MCS grants a Choir Camp scholarship to a young person in the community. As well, Maureen has supported the High C’s Choral Festival held in the Digby area each May. MCS has done choir exchanges with other community choirs; the choir has also performed in Broadway musicals in co-operation with the Greenwood Players.

Maureen gets her repertoire ideas from various sources. As a member of NSCF, she uses its extensive choral library. At conferences and choir camps she exchanges notes with fellow musicians. In preparing programs, she goes through MCS’s own library, borrows from the NSCF library, and purchases a few new pieces each year. She is careful to choose a varied program: Canadian compositions, sacred and secular selections, jazz and gospel arrangements, folk songs, and show tunes are all considered. At the top of any playlist would be compositions by our own Nova Scotia composers.

Recognizing that singing is a physical endeavour, Maureen uses the first 20 minutes of rehearsals for vocal warm-ups. Borrowing freely from musical friends, she constantly varies the exercises and drills. Choristers gain an appreciation of their own voices, as well as working within a group of fellow singers. On occasion, she has brought in an expert musician to conduct a workshop: a frequent visitor has been composer Gary Ewer. In 2005, MCS commissioned Gary to write “Nova Scotia Is Our Home” to celebrate the 400 th anniversary of the Port Royal settlement. At this time, Stephen McNeil, MLA for Annapolis, moved a resolution in the House of Assembly: “Therefore be it resolved that all members of the House extend congratulations to the Middleton Choral Society and, in particular, director Maureen MacLean, for all their hard work and effort on launching the premiere performance of “Nova Scotia is Our Home.”

The final performance of MCS with Maureen at the helm occurred on Sunday November 17 before a packed house in Evergreen Theatre in Margaretsville. A distinct feature which has become a trademark of MCS’s concerts is the participation in the program of individual choir members as vocalists or instrumentalists in support of the regular choral works. Following the concert, choir members enjoyed a pot luck at Margaretsville United Church. Once COVID-19 has run its course, news of a new director and renewed energy for Middleton Choral Society will be forthcoming. Stay tuned!
John A.Montgomerie, September 2020

Celandine: An Exercise in Social Dreaming – Polaris Choirs for Change

Celandine: An Exercise in Social Dreaming

Performed by Polaris (Choirs for Change) Music by Ryan Henwood Text by Claire Bennet Video by Tim Mombourquette

Celandine, meaning “joys to come” in the language of flowers, explores the transition from a busy life led by superficial desires (the Past) to a sudden absence of these structures in a time of isolation and questioning (the Present). The third section (the Future) represents a call to reconnect with nature, guided by a sense of community and transience. We have been sending polluted noise out into the world for so long, it is now time to pause, listen, and react to the music the environment is trying to relay to us, and imagine a joyful, hopeful future. This piece was created for Nocturne: Art at Night 2020 with funding received through the Province of Nova Scotia’s Cultural and Youth Activities grant program.

National Roundtables for the Canadian Choral Community: Connect & Exchange

Choral Canada is hosting a second series of National Roundtables for the Canadian choral community: Connect & Exchange.

This will be a time to reconnect with colleagues, to share in the ups and downs of running a choir during COVID-19, and to exchange practical ideas based on what has or has not been working well. Come hear from some choral leaders in the country and engage in small group discussions.
Six roundtables will be offered in English and two in French, co-hosted with Alliance chorale du Québec. Summaries from the sessions will be made available in both languages.

Advance registration required. Register here today!

Free Online Vocal/Choral Opportunities – HRM Students

The Halifax Regional Arts program is offering multiple music-making opportunities for students in the HRM.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Halifax Regional Arts Program is offering online choral classes. To register for this and other choral/music offerings, please go to https://hra.hrce.ca/ and click on “online offerings”

CHORAL SKILLZ (2 SECTIONS) THURSDAYS SECTION I 4:00-5:15 SECTION II 5:30-6:45 GRADES 7-12

“If a choir is only about singing and performing – there will be no choir for awhile. If a choir is about teaching and learning, growing, connecting, community, cultural exploration and transmission, and innovating – we will find a way to have choir”-Kellie Walsh

While there are some restrictions in place with regards to singing in person, we can move online and take this opportunity to develop our choral skills, study some choral repertoire, and build a choral community that is bound by a love of choral singing!  In addition to exploring choral repertoire, we will learn about sight-singing; ear training; vocal health, body mapping, conducting; improvisation; music appreciation (listening to choirs from around the world) and tips for a successful choral audition.

FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT THESE VOCAL/CHORAL OPPORTUNITIES, PLEASE GO TO:

https://hra.hrce.ca/

TO REGISTER PLEASE GO TO:
https://sites.google.com/gnspes.ca/halifax-regional-arts-resource/home/online-programs-2021