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  • Betsy Cook Weber

In Search of the Secret Sauce

So, what do I hope to learn on this trip? Well, I hope to find the "secret sauce." What makes these choirs so wonderful?

  • What level of training do singers bring to the choir when they arrive?

  • What level of training do singers receive once they are in the choir?

  • How many hours do these choirs routinely rehearse?

  • How many concerts/services do these choirs give?

  • To what extent do these choirs repeat repertoire?

  • To what extent do the acoustics of the rehearsal and performing spaces contribute to the excellence?

  • What is the process used when beginning rehearsal on a new piece?

  • Do these choirs use voice part recordings or other technology to aid in the learning process?

  • What is the expectation for outside-of-rehearsal preparation?

  • Do singers and choirs employ solfege when learning new music? If so, do they use movable or fixed "Do?"

  • What motivates singers to participate in a particular choir?

  • What are the roles of the support staff, i.e. managers, producers, assistant and associate conductors, vocal coaches, etc.

  • What were the goals and dreams (in terms of their particular choirs) of the conductors when they first took the post?

  • What are the goals and dreams of the conductors now?

Tomorrow we will visit the first choir, Royal Holloway! Stay tuned!



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