Stop “Running Through” Pieces

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I’m serious…stop doing it. If you never let your singers just sing through minutes or whole pieces of unrehearsed music, then you may not even need to read on.  However, if you do, please consider the following. We already know that with every repetition, notes and rhythms in any piece become easier for a singer.  Repetition can and should be …

Improving Your Choir, 1 Percent At A Time

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Recently, I read a fantastic article by James Clear in which he describes how British cycling coach Dave Brailsford took a unique approach to improving the team’s performance: His belief was that if you improved every area related to cycling by just 1 percent, then those small gains would add up to remarkable improvement. They started by optimizing the things …

When Rehearsals Go Bad

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One of my favorite parts of my job is when we finish a fantastic, musical, productive rehearsal in choir.  I leave excited, energized, and invigorated.  Students have fun, leave singing the music they just learned with a sense of accomplishment. Then there are “those days”… You know what I’m talking about– the worst thing in the world for an ensemble …

How To Make Choir Sectionals Effective

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Okay, so the idea is simple enough, right– separate different voice parts into their own sections in various areas around the room or building, and they can rehearse ALL of the details you could have in the same time together with only ONE of them in a full ensemble setting.  It’s a miracle rehearsal tool!!!    Providing absolutely no context …

Rehearsing Contemporary A Cappella Groups

jdfrizzell a cappella, Teaching 1 Comment

Over the years, I have developed my own unique way to rehearse contemporary a cappella groups. As the director of OneVoice from Briarcrest Christian School, I have had the privilege of working with some incredibly talented and dedicated singers.  During this time, I honed a process to introduce new pieces, rehearse them, stage them, and get them performance-ready. My method is based …