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Choir - some info please........

(58 Posts)
Kateykrunch Mon 31-Dec-18 18:09:56

Just wondering if any of you lovely people who sing in a choir can answer this query for me. I would really like to join a Choir and there are several local to pick from. I did have a try a few years ago, but ended up with a proper croaky throat and even a sore throat. (They did do voice warm up exercises). Singing is supposed to be good for the lungs and beneficial for well-being, if I persevered for more than a few weeks this time, might this throat problem not happen? Thanks x

Grannyknot Mon 31-Dec-18 18:15:23

I sing happily with the Rock Choir in my local area. I get so much out of it.

Did you maybe try and force your voice? Or did you perhaps sing in the wrong section? I sing in High Alto but tried Lower Soprano once or twice and it hurt my throat. What about buying some special lozenges (can't remember the name now but my chemist has them) such as actors and singers use?

I think you should persevere beyond a few weeks, I'm amazed at how much my voice has improved over a year of singing... good luck!

goldengirl Mon 31-Dec-18 18:39:14

I'm a Rock Choir member too! It's great fun; no pressure and gets me out of the house - and moving as we also do moves with the songs which is very good for coordination!!!

Sparklefizz Mon 31-Dec-18 18:54:35

I sing with a Rock Choir too and the singing has really improved my lung capacity. I have asthma and the asthma nurse asked me what I had done to improve my breathing ... it can only be the singing (plus it's great fun!)

ninathenana Mon 31-Dec-18 19:39:31

If only I could sing in tune sad

hillwalker70 Mon 31-Dec-18 20:07:13

I sing with a group of friends, as Grannyknot said, make sure you are in the right section, I sing Alto or Tenor, we do physical and musical warm up and start with rounds and short pieces. I notice if I miss a week my throat muscles really ache so it is getting used to singing. A lot of us always wear scarves to keep our throats warm.

hillwalker70 Mon 31-Dec-18 20:10:04

Vocalzone are good if you do get a sore throat, only lozenge recommended for singers, sometimes you have to ask at the chemist, they keep them underneath the counter.

Luckygirl Mon 31-Dec-18 20:22:30

I have always sung in choirs and also run choirs all my adult life. Anyone can sing - honestly!

You are only likely to get a croaky throat if you are doing "shouty" singing or are in the wrong voice part. I love hearing rock choirs - and everyone is having a ball - but the style used, which involves closing the throat rather than opening it, does tend towards a croaky throat for some people.

Don't give up - there are so many community choirs now that there is bound to be one that suits you - just make sure that you are not trying to sing either too high or too low for your voice range.

You could google the natural voice network - they might have some ideas in your area.

Grandma70s Mon 31-Dec-18 20:42:01

I’ve always sung in choirs, starting at school and working up to being in a choir attached to a symphony orchestra - fiendish auditions! There are many levels of choral singing. In some choirs you don’t even have to be able to read music, in some you have to be able to find your way round a complicated score. You have to find the level that’s right for you at the time.

I haven’t sung for years now. Too old, no voice left.

Grandma70s Mon 31-Dec-18 20:53:06

On the subject of voice parts, I found that my voice got lower as I got older. I started as a second soprano and finished as a first alto. If the truth be told, I should probably have been a second alto by the time I stopped, but I managed to get away with it.

Incidentally, I don’t like the way children are usually taught to sing at school now. They shout, and many teachers seem to think that if it’s loud, it’s good.

Gagagran Mon 31-Dec-18 21:13:21

I'm another who has sung in choirs for years. I am now a lower alto after my voice has deepened as I age and I have learned never to strain for higher notes than I can comfortably get. Vocalzone are excellent voice lubricants and we are all encouraged to take regular sips of water too.

I sing in a village choir every week and we do two concerts a year, Winter and Spring. We have 70 members, bass, tenor, alto and soprano. I love the choir and the friendships we share, the fun we have and the health benefits of singing. Go for it - it's a wonderful hobby to enjoy.

Grannyknot Mon 31-Dec-18 22:13:55

I've also sung in choirs for as long as I can remember - since primary school. My gran was a piano teacher and a choir leader.

Luckygirl what do you mean by "the style of singing involves closing the throat" I've never heard that nor been told to sing in a particular style ...? We sing all sorts, Rock Choir is just the name.

Great that so many of us are in the Rock Choir "family" grin

Grannyknot Mon 31-Dec-18 22:21:59

The health benefits are massive - strengthens the diaphragm, lung function, social connection, joyfulness, creativity ... I could go on.

Luckygirl Mon 31-Dec-18 23:19:07

It releases happy chemicals as you sing too. That is another way it is good for you. smile

The closed throat singing is what a lot of pop singers do - you can hear the difference in the style and use of the voice if you compare that with an opera singer. I am not making a value judgement here - any singing is good singing in my book! - but some styles are easier on the voice.

Grannyknot Mon 31-Dec-18 23:36:35

Ah, right. Rock Choir is definitely not opera singing 😁.

Grannyknot Mon 31-Dec-18 23:41:22

Goldengirl I'm useless at the moves! I'm the one turning left when everyone else is turning right. My biggest panic is remembering all the lyrics when we sing at events. Luckily our choir master is very good at miming the words grin

Grannyknot Mon 31-Dec-18 23:44:07

Here we are at Waterloo Station earlier this year, note his miming! Not the best quality recording, it was posted by a member of the public:

BlueBelle Tue 01-Jan-19 00:17:27

Can’t sing wouldn’t inflict my voice on any choir

Kateykrunch Tue 01-Jan-19 11:07:45

Thanks everyone, will get the Vocalzone lozenges, I think I do try to blast it out, so will take it a bit easier and not be so shouty lol. I have just booked my place in a small singing group, starting tomorrow, tra la la la laaaaaa.

Happy New Year All xx

Grandma70s Tue 01-Jan-19 11:19:41

Incidentally, I don’t believe for a moment that ‘everyone can sing’. Have you seen that YouTube video of the little girl in the nativity play? Search YouTube for ‘Funny Nativity’. It’s amazing!

Sparklefizz Tue 01-Jan-19 11:43:50

Grandma70s She's just a small child showing off, though.

Bikerhiker Tue 01-Jan-19 11:47:28

I was thinking of joining a Rock Choir. Are members put in to different sections? If so do you have to test/audition?
I haven't sung for years and would feel a bit self conscious!

Sparklefizz Tue 01-Jan-19 11:49:05

No auditions Bikerhiker. It would help if you knew roughly whether you're a soprano or alto, but doesn't matter. Several of our choir members only realised after they'd been singing for a while.

Grandma70s Tue 01-Jan-19 11:59:47

Sparklefizz, I don’t think the little girl is showing off. I think she’s in dead earnest and has no idea she’s not in tune.

Grannyknot Tue 01-Jan-19 12:03:07

Bikerhiker no auditions and a very friendly environment. You decide where you fit.

Also - the Rock Choir format for learning new songs is very clever. I used to sing in a community choir and got terribly bored with the "high end" stuff where e.g. the tenors would practice for what seemed like hours whilst the rest of us sat around waiting to join in. I want to sing for fun so prefer singing stuff that can be easily learnt by the whole choir.

The Rock Choir format is such that the arrangements make the song interesting and we have learnt a new song - with everyone joining in - in as little as half an hour. All the songs made available online on the website as MP3 downloads so that you can practice at home.

I do believe that everyone can sing - my (very average) singing voice improves greatly with practice.