Several weeks ago I stumbled across a Twitter post from Gareth Malone, inviting choirs to apply for his new series. Nothing to lose I thought, so I filled in an application form – for the Choir who can’t sing. And guess what? Following a 30 minute telephone interview last week, we have been selected for audition!
As with many similar documentary-type series, they are undoubtedly interested in our back story, and I suspect that our choir is pretty unique in this regard. Bottom line though, they are looking for choirs who can give a stunning, top quality performance, so now that we’re in, that has to be our primary focus. It is going to be a very steep learning curve.
In a school context, the choir has to be accessible: put bluntly, if we sing anything which is too challenging, boys are not going to feel able to join. I really am most insistent that anyone can join, however bad they think they are at singing. We sing in unison with accompaniment – it’s that simple.
So one of the things which is really exciting about this audition is that we are no longer in a school context, and therefore we are no longer tied down by the accessibility issue. In terms of the competition, there is no doubt at all that we have plenty of scope for development as a choir, but even so, the initial bar for the audition is set very high.
- We will be given a song selection just a week before the audition.
I like this. It’s a great leveller for all choirs, but for such inexperienced singers we’re going to find it particularly tough. Not made any easier by the fact that we have a leave weekend on the Saturday and Sunday of that week, so rehearsal time will be very limited.
- The audition is a cappella!
No, I’m not joking. We can have a guitar I think, but certainly no keyboard. So it’s going to be quite a challenge to decide whether we try to sing in harmony, or whether we keep it very simple. Again, inexperience is against us.
What I am determined to do, regardless of anything else, is to take this seriously. And by seriously I mean having a fabulous time both rehearsing and performing, with all of our characteristic energy and enthusiasm!. People need to know that singing is something which everyone can enjoy. There will be some truly amazing choirs in this competition, and with no disrespect to the boys, I don’t suspect for a moment that we will get any further than the audition. But we’re going to make the very most of the opportunity 🙂