Below are many of the questions we are asked most often. If you can't find what you are looking for, please This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.!

How do I join the chorus? Do I need to audition?
What is the schedule like if I join chorus?
Do I have to know how to read music?
Can I come and check out a rehearsal before I commit to an entire session?
Do I have to sing in the concerts?
When are rehearsals and what are they like?
When are your concerts?
What is the cost to join the chorus?
Do you offer scholarships?
What is your refund policy?
What kinds of songs do you sing?

What if I need to miss some rehearsals?
Is the Brattleboro Women's Chorus a non-profit organization?
How can I make a donation to the chorus?
Is the Chorus available to sing at area events or for a personal event?

How do I join the chorus? Do I need to audition?

4-singersSPRING 2021 semester Starts in March on Thursdays from 10-11:30 am OR 7-8:30 pm via Zoom . Choose ONE of those meeting times (though if you can’t make it to your usual one, feel free to come to the other!) You probably know that singing is one of the “super spreader” activities, and we not willing to risk our health by gathering in person until something shifts.

No auditions required! The Brattleboro Women’s Chorus welcomes anyone ages 10 and up who identifies as a woman or non-binary, and whose vocal range comfortably includes the A in the middle of the treble staff. You may register via Zoom for one of our two "Open Rehearsals" to "try out" chorus and see if it's right for you, after which you can register and pay online (or apply for financial aid). Announcements are also made on our Facebook page, so “Like” us to keep current on updates. You can also download our current registration letter, print out the form(s) at the end, and send it to us with your deposit for the upcoming session if you're already positive about joining (though we prefer everyone to register online). 

What is the schedule like if I join chorus?

Because we will be fully online this year, the commitment is minimal. Rehearsals are once a week on Thursdays at either 10-11:30 am OR 7-8:30 pm and continue for 12 weeks. Our fall online concert will be on Sunday, November 22. The spring session begins in early March and ends with our concert on Mother’s Day.  There are weekly zoom "rehearsals" complimented with recorded tracks and possibly some written music to practice with. Our current schedule (always subject to change) can be found here.

Do I have to know how to read music?

In a word, no. The chorus encourages all levels of music ability and appreciation from beginners on up. The music we sing is intended to build musical skills in vocal production (singing!) and in listening to ourselves (and others when the time comes). Much of the music we learn, even with multiple and complicated parts, is taught by ear; this is intentional. There is no better way to build skill in listening than learning by ear! Written music is made available for certain songs on occasion, but each member receives a practice CD or can download the music from our website with all the songs for their part recorded to help with in-home learning. YouTube recordings and word sheets are provided to help with learning as well.

Can I come and check out a rehearsal before I commit to an entire session?

Sure! The first two rehearsals of each semester are Open Rehearsals that are open to anyone who is interested in experiencing what chorus is all about. You will have to register to receive the Zoom link, however. At the end of the Open Rehearsal you may sign up for the remainder of the semester via our online registration form (you can also use this form to apply for financial aid as well).

Do I have to sing in the concerts?

This year chorus is all online, so where you are on the concert day is entirely up to you! Families are all welcome to show up on the Zoom concert. Our first online concert brought about 170 people from all over the country to sing "together." The best part is no one but you will ever know if you mess up and you'll have the words right there with you! 

When are rehearsals and what are they like?

Rehearsals take place on Thursday mornings from 10:00-11:30 am or from 7-8:30 pm via Zoom. Rehearsals start with some brief warm ups (some are silly, but all have a purpose) and then we go right into learning songs.

Our weekly time together will be mostly songs we can learn in one session or two, and we’ll sing along with backing tracks. Practice tracks will also be available online (or a CD). We’ll sing good songs for you to take away with you into your daily life, and I’ll offer ways you can enjoy exploring your own singing. Each fourth week, we’ll sing through the songs we’ve learned the prior month.

 Check out our photos to get a sense of our community of singers or learn more about us here. Chorus members also have great things to say about their experiences in chorus.

When are your concerts?

Our Fall concerts are the weekend before Thanksgiving and our Spring concerts are the weekend of Mother’s Day. Upcoming concert information can be found here.

What is the cost to join the chorus?

We know this time is a challenging one in multiple ways. Finances are one of those challenges for many of us. We want to make certain that chorus is financially accessible to all who are interested, and to that end we are adding a sliding scale option ($150-$80) to our fee structure that expands our usual standard fees ($120 per singer, with $190 family pair and $70 student rates). We will also continue to offer financial aid to those who need it. 

Our costs for ‘chorus online’ are not substantially less than chorus in person.  Though we don’t have some expenses such as rehearsal and concert rentals, we do have extra expenses for technology, and we have to lower our income projections as well, with concerts, fundraisers and singer participation all so different in this new format.

The budget forecast we have created, which includes our important priority of continuing to pay Becky, will require that we dip into our financial reserves this year in order to balance our books. We had hoped to use these reserve funds for our trip to the Sister Singers Festival in the summer of 2022 (now postponed until 2023). SO….if you can pay a little extra this year, or contribute even if you’re not able to sing or don’t wish to participate in chorus this fall, we welcome that! AND…if you need a little help to participate this year, please make use of our sliding scale, or if even that scale is too much, please ask for the financial aid that we continue to offer. We don’t want anyone to let finances prevent them from participating. Together we can all make this work!  

Do you offer scholarships?

Yes! It is very important to us to make chorus possible for those who would like to join but can not afford the full fees. Applying for financial aid is required by filling out the Financial Aid Form online when registering and submitting with a $20 deposit by the date indicated on the form. Decisions are made within a week of the deadline.

What is your refund policy?

If a participant pays in full before or by the first session and then drops out within the first three weeks, we will give a refund  less $15 for each session attended at the time they inform us they are no longer participating. After three weeks there is no refund. Financial Aid recipients and others with extenuating circumstances will be considered by the Board.

What kinds of songs do you sing?

We sing a mix of spirited and spiritual music from a variety of cultures and genres, and every session has some semblance of a “theme.”  The words are usually in English, with the occasional Zulu, Baltic, KiSwahili, etc. song. Most songs are sung in three- or four-part harmonies, but some are in unison, some in rounds, and many with the accompaniment of guest musicians who play at our concerts (when in person). There are some links of songs we hope to sing in Becky's welcome letter to chorus members. If there were defining qualities to all the songs, it would be ones that speak to the heart, are uplifting in some way, or that are just plain fun. You can check out all the songs we have sung in each concert or listen to a few sample tracks from our CD to hear a variety for yourself!

What if I need to miss some rehearsals?

Normally the most you should miss is 2 rehearsals if you are planning to sing in the concerts. Again, the online format makes several things more flexible. If you're going to miss many, it's helpful to let our director, Becky know if you are going to miss more than a couple.

Is the Brattleboro Women's Chorus a non-profit organization?

Yes, we are! The Brattleboro Women's Chorus was founded in the fall of 1996 by conductor Becky Graber, incorporated in the State of Vermont in January of 2002, and recognized as a 501(c)(3) in April of 2003. Read about our history here. We have a very spunky and spirited board of directors who can answer most any of your questions!

How can I make a donation to the chorus?

As a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, your generous donation to the Brattleboro Women’s Chorus is completely tax-deductible. Our operating budget requires much more than the fees we collect from our chorus members and concert attendees. The budget forecast we have created for this year, which includes our important priority of continuing to pay our musical director, will require that we dip into our financial reserves this year in order to balance our books. 

Our costs for ‘chorus online’ are not substantially less than chorus in person.  Though we don’t have some expenses such as rehearsal and concert rentals, we do have extra expenses for technology, and we have to lower our income projections as well, with concerts, fundraisers and singer participation all so different in this new format.

Any contribution, large or small is much appreciated and will go towards keeping the chorus available to all those who want to join. You may make a donation by clicking here And THANK YOU!!! Check out our Donate page to find out more!

Is the Chorus available to sing at area events or for a personal event?

Unfortunately, since singing in person is considered one of the "super spreader" activities that can transmit Covid-19, we won't be performing at all in person until it's safe to do so. Likely this will take a year or two, much to our dismay.

Connect With Us

Brattleboro Women's Chorus is active on Facebook and we send out regular newsletters to let you know about our events and upcoming sessions. We are a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization and welcome donations to help us meet operating expenses.

 

Contact Us

P.O. Box 2591
Brattleboro, VT 05303

info@brattleborowomenschorus.org

www.facebook.com

A portion of our 20th Anniversary Chorus in concert - Fall 2016