What you need to know about our concerts

This page contains links to a couple of pages describing various aspects of the way we organise and run our concerts. We expect them to be of particular interest to new members, but established singers may find the occasional refresh useful too.

This page describes our concert etiquette – do’s and dont’s for when you are on stage.

See here for details about our standards of concert dress

Behind the scenes(under construction) – what you need to know and how you could help

An awful lot of planning and organisation goes into making our concerts happen. This section gives an overview of how a concert comes together, both so that you can appreciate the contributions which various people make, and so that you can consider whether you could get involved in some way. The overall effort is coordinated by the Concert Manager – a very busy person!

Planning — programme, venues, orchestra, soloists etc (to follow)

Advertising. Once the venue and programme have been settled, posters are created by the Programmes and Posters Rep, for approval by the Musical Director and Committee. Once printed, these are uploaded to the web and Facebook, and distributed in various sizes for members to display outside their own homes or (with the appropriate approval, of course) in other public places such community notice boards.

Ticketing. Once the programme and the number of seats available have been finalised, tickets can be printed and distributed by section reps for sale by choir members. We absolutely rely on good ticket income to be able to continue as a choir, so do please aim to sell at least 3 tickets per choir member. One of the committee takes responsibility for taking in ticket monies at rehearsals in the weeks just before the concert. Another member is responsible for sales of tickets to our Friends.

Decoration. For our Christmas concerts in particular, we produce a number of wreaths to decorate the church, which are sold off after the concert for additional income.

Planning the seating layout. Once section reps have reported back to the Concert Manager who from their section plans to be part of the performance, he or she organises a seating plan and advises members of it via their section reps.

Setting up the platform. Early on the morning of the concert, a large white van’s-worth of wooden staging has to be retrieved by a small team from the garage of the member who kindly stores it for us. A larger group of volunteers then work together to assemble the staging and lay out the seating, completing before lunchtime.

Rehearsal. In the afternoon (usually), the orchestra and choir get together for the first time for the final rehearsal. This is not primarily for the benefit of choir members, who should by now be throughly familiar both with the pieces and with Andrew’s treatment of it. Rather it is for the orchestra to work with Andrew to achieve the sound he wants, but it also allows choir members to hear the full accompaniment in the concert acoustics, rather than the familiar piano accompaniment in our rehearsal room.

Refreshments and the door team. A small group of loyal supporters set up refreshments for the public and the orchestra and check tickets on the door.

Assembly. We typically get together in an attached room half an hour or so before the performance start time, ready to line up in seating order about 15 minutes beforehand, and filing onto the stage just before the published start time.

Interval. There is a brief interval when it is possible to go into the body of he concert hall to meet family and friends who are attending, before lining up again to enter for the second half.

After the concert. The staging has to be taken down and the church restored to pristine condition ready for Sunday services, so it is all hands to the pump to disassemble the staging and carry it out to the van, which a smaller team then take back to the garage.