The Hope Community Choir performs to a large audience in May 2018. They are gearing up for this year’s spring concert and open to new members who are ready to start rehearsing now. (Hope Standard file photo)

Hope Community Choir warming up for spring concert

New members who can learn by ear, read music are welcome to start right away

The Hope Community Choir has started up once again, and the time to join is now.

Conductor La Vern Klassen says members should start coming as soon as possible to rehearsals, which are on Tuesdays from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at Hope United Church.

“We are open to new members but the best time for new people to come is in the first few weeks of a season, because we learn songs to prepare for a concert, as well as some other community performances,” she says.

The blast of snow earlier this year meant the first rehearsal was already missed, and so they are just getting started this month, she adds.

The repertoire for the season is a variety of uplifting, popular songs from different eras, reaching back 50 years. They’ll perform their spring concert on May 3, tentatively. The songs include the gospel-style arrangment How Can I Keep from Singing, You Raise Me Up by Josh Groban, A version of Bridge Over Troubled Waters by Simon & Garfunkel, Happy by Pharrell Williams, Loves Me Like a Rock by Paul Simon, and What a Wonderful World by Louis Armstrong.

It’s not necessary to have choral experience, or even be able to read music, she adds, as long as you can learn music by ear.

”If people aren’t sure about whether or not they can do this, they can come out and try it or contact me through our Facebook page – Hope Community Choir,” Klassen says. “My goal is to make it fun but also to teach enough about choral singing and how each voice part of each song goes so that it comes together and we can share the joy we get from singing together with our community.”

They are hoping to draw in more bass voices, but also need a few altos and tenors.

It’s not all about music, though. The group gives a bursary to a Hope secondary graduate each year and last year was able to give $500 to a student. They’ve already raised that much through their 2019 Christmas Concert, and will be using the spring concert’s proceeds to update their music library.

The choir has been in town for more than 50 years, and there are currently about 35 members. New members are encouraged to come out as soon as possible, to give the most possible time to rehearse for the show.


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