London Forest Choir newsletter

October 2017

New members

It's a pleasure to see so many new faces in the Choir this term - you are all very welcome. We hope you are enjoying singing with us and we look forward to a long and happy association.

 

If you have friends or family you think might be interested in joining us too, do encourage them to come and give us a try at one of our Monday rehearsals. Don't forget that membership is free for the first term you sing with us.

Rehearsal music files

Most of the music for our Advent Concert is out of copyright and is available in individual voice parts on the John Fletcher Music website. You can register for free at https://johnfletchermusic.org/registration-instructions-for-rcp/ then search, listen to and download the music files for your voice part. All the out-of-copyright material for our concert is available for download (with the exception of new arrangements).Of the in-copyright material we are singing, four of them (Hymn to the Virgin, I Sing of a Maiden, Out of Your Sleep and A Spotless Rose) are available but only with a paid subscription.

 

Our weekly rehearsals are recorded so you can listen to them again (or listen to them for the first time if you were unable to attend).To access these recordings, go to https://soundcloud.com/user-719210741/sets/2017-autumn-rehearsal.

 

You can also hear most of the music for our Advent concert (although not necessarily the same arrangements) on Spotify at https://open.spotify.com/user/125351214/playlist/5kQpBbwJEmNJMgi9kzwwmy#.

Annual General Meeting

The Annual General Meeting of the Choir will be held on Monday 30th October at 7.30 pm. It will be followed by a normal rehearsal, when we will continue working on the music for our Advent concert.

 

One of the functions of the AGM is to elect the Committee for another year. All current committee members are standing for election again and there is also a long-standing vacancy for a Social Secretary. New faces are always welcome on the Committee, so please put yourself forward if you are interested in serving. As well as named positions, it is possible to join the Committee and contribute to our future planning without holding a specific post. If you are interested in joining but unsure about taking on a specific role, why not join us on this basis and see how it goes? If you want to know more about what is involved, speak to an existing Committee member (look for the blue name badges).

 

As well as the formal business of the AGM, the evening will also provide an opportunity for you to raise any issues you would like to about the Choir and what we do. Agenda and reports have been emailed to choir members; in order to reduce the burden of copying, we ask you to download your own hard copies. A limited number of hard copies will be available for any members who are unable to do this.

Forthcoming concerts

Advent Concert, St Michael & All Angels, Saturday 25th November 7.30 pm

 

Rehearsals: The final Monday rehearsal before the concert, on Monday 20th November, will be held in the church. It is important that as many people as possible attend that rehearsal, as we will be planning the moves the Choir will be making during the concert. If you can't attend that rehearsal but will be singing in the concert, please make sure that someone else knows so that a place can be saved for you. To help us with our planning, please let your part rep know as soon as possible whether or not you will be singing in the concert.

 

There will also be an extra Choir rehearsal in the church on Friday 24th November at 7.30 pm. On the afternoon of the concert, we will have a rehearsal in the church at a time to be arranged.

 

St Michael's is situated on the corner of Palmerston & Northcote Roads, Walthamstow, E17 6PQ.Please be aware that it is no longer possible to access Northcote Road by car from Palmerston Road. Also, the surrounding streets form part of a residents' parking zone until 6.30 pm. So you might want to avoid coming by car if possible, particularly for the Saturday afternoon rehearsal. The nearest car park is Sainsbury's car park on the corner of Selborne Road and Willow Walk.

 

Tickets: Tickets cost £12 in advance (or £14 on the door); for students and those on benefits, they're £7. You will be able to buy advance tickets from Laetitia Hermann at choir rehearsals. Flyers and posters will also be available for you to help publicise the concert.

 

Hinde Street Methodist Church, Sunday 10th December

We will be repeating parts of our Advent program at Hinde Street Methodist Church, W1U 2QJ (nearest stations Bond Street and Oxford Circus).This is a lunchtime concert, following the church's Sunday morning service, and is part of a monthly concert series in support of the West London Mission which helps homeless and disadvantaged people. There will be an extra rehearsal at Hinde Street on the evening of Thursday 7th December.

Music folders

If you're new to the Choir, you'll need one of our music folders. These are of superior quality and cost £20. You can either buy one to keep, or borrow one for an individual concert for a returnable deposit of £20. Gillian Barker looks after our supply of folders; if you need one, please see her in good time before the concert.

Clip-on lights

We often sing in venues where the lighting is less than perfect, our Advent Concert in St Michaels & All Angels being a case in point. The church interior is dark and very atmospheric - which is why we have chosen it for this performance - and we will all need to have lights attached to our folders to see the music and to "illuminate" the choir as we process. If you already have a set please ensure it is fully charged for the two rehearsals in the church and the concert itself. If you don't have a set, you can buy one from the Choir for £10 (slightly less than cost price) - they can be obtained from Michelle at any Monday rehearsal. It is also possible to borrow a set for an individual concert for a returnable deposit of £10 although given we are likely to need them again at Christmas and on other occasions this season, it's worth purchasing a set for yourself. They double as very handy reading lights! Each set comes with a charging cable that connects to the mains so you will not need batteries.

Interval refreshments at Cornerstone

A polite reminder to pay your £5 for Monday refreshments for the term if you haven't already done so. Drinks are pre-poured, tea to the right and coffee to the left, to enable a double-queue at the service hatch. Soft drinks are now served in the kitchen immediately adjacent to the hall where we rehearse, and the termly fee for these is £2.

 

Announcements are normally made in the hall at the beginning of the second half. When the bell is rung at the end of the interval, please make your way back into the hall as quickly as possible so we don't lose valuable rehearsal time.

Community engagement 

We are keen to raise our public profile by reaching out to sections of the local community who may not be aware of our activities. Our performance for the Multiple Sclerosis Society last June was an example of this. Please let us know if you have connections to a local group who might be interested in hearing more about what we do, and maybe even hosting a performance.

Choir social events

We are thinking of having regular Pub Nights (say, once a month), possibly starting in the New Year, and this will be a discussion item at the AGM. We would welcome any other ideas for social events from choir members, so get your thinking caps on!

Singing opportunities

Wedding Choir Members have in the past enjoyed providing a small choir for events such as weddings. We are keen to find opportunities to do this again; it is a rewarding experience and a useful source of extra income for the Choir. We advertise our availability for such engagements on our website. If you know or hear of anyone looking for a wedding choir or for similar events, do point them in our direction.

Shop online and raise funds for the choir!

If you ever shop online you could be collecting free donations for the Choir via Easyfundraising. There are over 3,000 retail sites ready to make a donation including Amazon, John Lewis, Aviva, Sainsburys, Expedia, Sky, and many more. There are no catches or hidden charges and it won't cost you a penny extra. See the link on the Home page of the Choir website or go to https://www.easyfundraising.org.uk/causes/londonforestchoir/ and register. Give it a try!

 

If you have any items for inclusion in future Choir newsletters, please send them to Michelle Matthews at michelle_matthews@btinternet.com.