Monday, October 05, 2015

Want to sing with more energy? – pretend to be somebody else

I ran a gospel singing weekend recently. One of the songs was flagging a bit so I suggested people ham it up a bit and be more “American”.

Miranda sings
Miranda Sings by Gage Skidmore. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Commons

Suddenly the song came to life and everyone was energised. Playing some kind of ‘character’ when you’re singing can really enliven your singing. Here’s how ...

Monday, September 28, 2015

Fit the song arrangement to your singers and not the other way round

Most singers in choirs don’t fit neatly into choral vocal ranges. Yet we try to squeeze them in to our off-the-shelf arrangements, chastising them when they can’t reach the notes.

community choir
photo by Garry Knight

How about thinking of your singers first and choosing arrangements that fit their voices rather than the other way round?

Monday, September 21, 2015

How to be a better singer if you’re a mere mortal

When you think you’re not singing well, you’ll often blame yourself. But what if it’s something else, something outside yourself that you can fix quite easily?


Here are some reasons why you might not think you’re a good singer and what you can do about it.

Monday, September 14, 2015

Effective ways to recruit more men for your choir #getmensinging

Lots of mixed choirs don’t have enough male singers, and many established male voice choirs are not managing to find younger recruits (see my series of three posts Men and singing).


Here are some ideas to help you recruit more men and to get men singing in general.

Monday, September 07, 2015

How welcoming is your choir?

I bet you think your choir is a wonderful, friendly little community that welcomes newcomers with open arms.


What if I told you that new members might find your choir scary, cliquey and unwelcoming? Maybe it’s time to look at things from a different perspective.

Monday, August 31, 2015

Sing something simple (and see if your singing is as good as you think it is)

If you’re like me, you’re always tempted to add harmonies to the simplest of melodies whether it’s singing along with others or arranging a song.


But don’t overlook the simplicity of unison singing and drones. These are great ways of finding out if your singing is as good as you think!

Monday, August 24, 2015

Planning ahead: leave space for the unexpected

Many choir leaders will be using the long break to plan their next season.

falling rock
photo by webmink

But be careful not to over-plan or you won’t be able to respond to the unexpected.