Guidelines for Members

published on 19 December 2017

A warm welcome!

On joining the Velvetones Harmony Chorus you will find you are amongst a group of warm-hearted ladies who just love to sing! We welcome all types of voice as long as you can sing in tune and hold your part. Your part in the four-part harmony is determined by a simple voice test to see which pitch you are best suited to. We use the app Box.com to download all our music and you will be told which song to learn in order to take an audition with the other three voice parts. We encourage prospective members to attend our weekly practices during this time so that they can listen alongside their individual part.

The four parts are described below. Don't be put off by the fact that they are named after men's barbershop parts! This is just the style of harmony singing that we follow.

BassProvides the rhythm and grounding for our music. Suitable for voices with rich warm tone on lower notes.
BaritoneResponsible for harmonising with the other parts and ensuring there is a balance in the overall sound. Suitable for mid-range voice, requires a good ear for harmony.
LeadRequired to sing the melody with precision and flair. Accuracy in rhythm, notes and words is very important. also suitable for mid-range voice.
TenorMust sing with a sweet high voice that will blend with but not dominate the lead. Requires a wide vocal range and the ability to listen and blend with all the other parts.

What happens next?

Types of membership

You can be a full singing member, in which case you are expected to be in Spain for at least six months between September and June. There is no singing in July and August. Social members are welcome to visit whenever they can and help out with front of house, selling raffle tickets, looking after belongings etc, on performance nights.

Subscriptions

You will complete a joining form and pay your membership fee to the Treasurer. Our fees are currently €10 monthly for full members and €5 monthly for social members. This includes a drink at half time on rehearsal days. This must be paid even if you are away on holiday or sick. We encourage members to pay a full quarter in advance if they can. This cuts down the treasurer's job to a minimum. You will be given a name badge which should be worn at all rehearsals.

Outfits

You will also be required to pay €30 refundable deposit for chorus outfits. On rehearsal days we wear our own turquoise tops and white or black bottoms depending on summer or winter. For singouts, we normally wear silver or white low-heeled shoes/sandals in summer and black low-heeled or flat shoes in winter. Very occasionally we may wear our ball gowns in which case low-heeled sandals would be required.

Make-up, jewellery and perfume
Unless it is outdoors on a hot summers' day, we normally wear full make-up for our engagements. This includes red or dark pink lipstick and nail polish and blue, purple or grey eye-shadow (unless otherwise advised). Jewellery is provided by the chorus and is dictated by the outfits to be worn. Perfume should NOT be worn, either to rehearsals or performances, as it disturbs the lungs when trying to sing and can be overpowering for some ladies.

Music

All sheet music and recorded music will be provided electronically (via the app Box.com) by the Music Librarian. If you do not have a printer the Music Librarian will provide a printed copy.

Learning new songs

You will now be expected to gradually learn the existing repertoire and any new songs as they are added. Members are expected to learn their notes and words outside rehearsal time using their teach recordings. There will also be occasional section practices.

Riser discipline

Once members are on the risers they are expected to focus on the rehearsal, so concentration on the musical director is essential. If you have any queries, please hold up your hand or wait until a suitable break to ask your question.

Leaving the chorus

In the event of a chorus member wishing to leave, all sheet music and costumes must be returned to the chorus. Relevant deposits will then be returned.

Velvetones Choir