Re: [bbshop] Going "Dark"
- I think that what Steve was suggesting was that they still meet on the regular rehearsal night, but instead of having a rehearsal, they do other barbershop related (quartet-related?) activities. There are a lot of fun things that can be done to break up the monotony of chorus rehearsals....pick-up quartet competitions, organized learning of tags, general socializing, etc. Our chorus policy is to have a meeting every week. But there are times (especially after contests/shows or at the holidays or bad weather days) when we don't really rehearse. That way, we don't break the habit, but we still get our break.
On Tue, 30 October 2001, gcrau@... wrote:
> Steve: I believe a break now and then can't hurt, however be careful.
> Barbershopping becomes a pleasant habit. Three weeks is a bit much.
> One, or even two weeks, might be alright, but more than that breaks the
> habit. Your folks might find something else to do on that regular
> meeting night. Take that break only after that hectic time prior to
> contests or shows. Good luck, I'd be interested in the results.
> SING-cerely, GEORGE RAU ,<gcrau@...> Lead, Pine Barons Chorus,
> 96,97 & 98 Atlantic Div. Champions, retired Chapter Coach,
> Atlantic Division Events Coordinator, ICQ#25137666
> On Tue, 30 Oct 2001 12:42:09 -0800 "Sammonds, Steve" <ssammonds@...>
> > Hi all,
> > I am toying around with some ideas on changing the standard model
> > for our
> > chapter's meeting and rehearsal schedule. The most drastic of these
> > is
> > taking some time off after particularly harried periods. For
> > example, next
> > year during March, April and early May the chorus will compete in
> > two
> > contests and put on its annual show. My idea is to give the chorus a
> > three-week hiatus for the remainder of May. We would still have
> > chapter
> > meetings devoted to quartetting (Casey, you out there?) and maybe
> > take the
> > opportunity to do some other fun things like chapter visitations.
> > The cautions I have heard from a few people are that "we'll forget
> > all the
> > music during that time." All that tells me as a director is that you
> > really
> > don't know your music. Another warning I've heard is "if you give
> > people
> > three weeks off you'll never get them back." Actually, I think
> > providing
> > some breaks beats the heck out this "52 weeks a year" mentality that
> > seems
> > to prevail. We can't expect people to do 50-52 weeks a year every
> > year.
> > We're trying desperately to recruit more members. In this busy
> > world,
> > wouldn't it be more attractive if people saw a few breaks in the
> > schedule
> > rather than having to immediately prepare for the next show and
> > contest
> > cycle one week after completing twelve or weeks of very hard work? I
> > must
> > admit I got this idea after looking at the rehearsal and performance
> > schedules of other non-barbershop singing groups in our area. Heck,
> > most of
> > them take the entire summer off.
> > Looking for some opinions, especially from any chapters out there
> > that have
> > taken or do take regular "breaks." For how long do you go dark? At
> > what time
> > of the year? Do you have trouble with members not coming back or
> > coming back
> > forgetting everything they've learned? Or do they come back
> > recharged,
> > refreshed, and eager to sing?
> > Thanks in advance for all your thoughts.
> > Peace and harmony to all,
> > Steve Sammonds (sammonds@... or ssammonds@...)
> > Music Director, Palo Alto-Mountain View Chapter (The Peninsulaires
> > Chorus,
> > FWD, SPEBSQSA)
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- --- In bbshop@y..., "Sammonds, Steve" <ssammonds@e...> wrote:
> I am toying around with [...] taking some time off afterHey, Steve! Let me tell you what "MY" chorus (it's so fun to say
> particularly harried periods. [...] My idea is to give the chorus a
> three-week hiatus for the remainder of May. We would still have
> chapter meetings devoted to quartetting and maybe take the
> opportunity to do some other fun things like chapter visitations.
that about the great City of Lakes SAI chorus!) does during the
We have our Christmas show (Dec 8 this year) and then have a Christmas
party on our very next regularly scheduled meeting night (Monday,
Dec 10 this year). We sing a bit and party hearty, and then take
the next 3 Mondays off, returning on the first non-holiday Monday in
January (Jan 7 in 2002).
However, here's what we expect from our singers, in exchange for the
time off. We hand out learning tapes and music at the Christmas
party and each singer is expected to have this music committed to
memory by the next rehearsal. This year, we are learning 4 songs
for our Show Package in Nashville in Nov 2002. (By the way, we're
using Sean Milligan's Learning-Tapes.com service for these tapes.
I'll let you know how it works out for us.)
The caveat is this. City of Lakes is a proud chorus with a tradition
of working hard and an expectation of excellence in performance and
contest. Thus, each singer is motivated to remain excellent and will
not shirk their duty during the time off. I'm pretty sure that most
choruses would experience some "fall off" with this kind of schedule,
but it seems to work for COL.
Hope this example gives you some insight into the problem.
Director, City of Lakes (SAI)
Baritone, Excalibur (SPEB)
brent-a-graham @ excite.com <== use this for private replies