I can't sing. Does it matter?
No. Anyway if you like music then actually you probably can. People usually progress a lot over the first few months. Don't worry. ;)
I'm not very confident.
You'll be in good company then. A choir is a group of normal people. Usually individually slightly insecure singers that make a big confident sound between them. That's the buzz!
Will I have to sing on my own?
I can't read music.
Doesn't matter. Few members read well. We do give you sheet music to use, but non-readers will mainly learn by copying the audio that we give out. Sight-singing develops naturally later!
I won't be able to make it every week.
No worries. There is no minimum commitment. You do what you can/want to. When we eventually perform the same applies -all are welcome, none are obliged. n.b. Members can attend any of the branches at any time, or even all of them (at no extra cost!).
What will it cost?
The first 3 sessions are free, while you make your mind up if it's for you or not.
After that it costs £230 for a year (approx 35 sessions), or £90 for a double term (approx 12 sessions), or £50 for a single term (approx 6 sessions). Concessionary rates (for those receiving pension credit, full-time students, incapacity allowance, job seekers allowance or income support) are £35 for one term or £65 for two, or £160 for the whole year. Membership is free to under 18s who come with an adult member.
Also. Being a member of the Gurt Lush Choir allows you free membership of Bristol MAN Chorus, & vice versa!
What do I get for my money?
Well,it varies enormously from year to year, but as an example, at the time of writing, this year you would be entitled to participation in:
- About 35 standard rehearsals at each of the three branches. (You may attend as many branches as you like once you've signed up, no-one's counting. Mix & match however suits!)
- Mass rehearsals on the days of the 2 major Colston Hall concerts. With orchestra when applicable. Sometimes additional mass rehearsals when necessary.
- 2 Flagship Colston Hall Concerts. Typical audience 1000 to 1500. Always with other performers involved. Sometimes amateur, sometime professional. Sometimes with orchestra, and/or guest M.D. Guests as diverse as professional touring opera companies, families of Romany Gypsies, other choirs of all sizes & flavours, school orchestras & all sorts of local talent that we are proud to bring to the big stage under our wing, as it were.
- Somewhere between 5 & 10 informal 'busking' events supporting such noble local initiatives as the Festival of Song, Making Sunday Special, Bristol Shakespeare Festival, Winter Wonder Zoo, (Carol Singing).
- Random offers that we accept. Currently booked for this year are: Participating in an award winning cutting-edge contemporary theatre performance. Launching a Rugby League world cup match. Being the official choir of the Lord Mayor's Christmas Concert (Colston Hall). Closing the festival of song at St Georges, & doing a 'Sing-a-long-a-Lush' event (also at St Georges). Also assisting in a celebration of English folksong. (Colston Hall AGAIN!). That's 4 Colston Hall concerts this year.
It's clear that any interesting new project that comes to Bristol looking for a chorus tends to ask us first. Simply because we're the biggest & the most visible. :)
Of course, you only do the events that you fancy/are available. We reckon that even if you only do half of them, it still represents amazing value for money!
- 2 or 3 mass rehearsals with a world-class pure vocal technique specialist. N.B. We have been finding it hard to find a space in the diary to book these!
- All our major concerts professionally recorded & filmed by a 4 or 5 man camera crew. The footage is shared freely - just check out our YouTube channel. Every now & then we even give all of you a free 'Best Of' CD/DVD as a reward for being lush!
- All of your sheet music/training recordings. (We do encourage you to download them & print them yourselves, or put mp3's on your phones/ipods, rather than take cd's, but for those of you who can't face that challenge, we're happy to hand you the physical goods too!)