Want to Sing? Find a Choir!

“How would someone find a choir,” I was asked yesterday in an interview. I said something like, “Oh, they’re everywhere,” and quoted the number of choirs in America instead of giving a nice practical answer. Because there is one. There are a number of online resources, and I list the big ones below. But you can always google “choir” or “choral society” and your city or town to find more. It’s worth the effort, all the research consistently indicates you will feel better if you sing.

“We aim at being the ultimate place for easily finding information about choirs and vocal groups, for finding and watching videos of choral music that were added by the community members.” The videos are a really cool aspect of this site, but so is their blog.

Run by the American Choral Directors Association, “The mission of the ACDA is to inspire excellence in choral music through education, performance, composition, and advocacy.” They maintain a comprehensive directory of choirs, including a directory of other directories of choirs!

Vocal Area Network
This is the place if you live in my part of the country. “Vocal Area Network is dedicated to the advancement of vocal ensemble music in the New York City area [except they also include New Jersey and Connecticut]. Our information-sharing services are offered for the benefit of the vocal ensemble community.”

The Virtual Choir
If you don’t want to leave your house, there is the wonderful Virtual Choir, started by composer Eric Whitacre. “The Virtual Choir began in May 2009 as a simple experiment in social media when Britlin Losee – a fan of Eric’s music – recorded a video of herself singing ‘Sleep’ and shared it on YouTube.” Whitacre invited others to do the same, and the videos were edited into a choir. It has become something Whitacre now does regularly. The next Virtual Choir debuts this month (and I’m in it)!

Chorus America
They don’t have a choir directory that I can see, but Chorus America is still a fabulous resource. I got a lot of great facts from them for my book. “Chorus America is the advocacy, research, and leadership development organization that advances the choral field. We support and serve choral conductors, administrators, board members, and singers with tools, training, peer networking, and access so that choruses are better able to contribute to their communities.”

Update: I’m adding other sources as I find them.

The Greater Boston Choral Consortium.
Choral Arts Foundation of the Upper Valley (of Vermont and New Hampshire).
The Association of Connecticut Choruses.
Never Stop Singing Choirs in the Twin Cities.
Seattle Sings.
Choirs in Washington State.
Triangle Sings Choral groups in the Triangle and Triad areas of North Carolina.

Britlin Losee, now a composer herself, conducting the Women’s Choir of the Aaron Copland School of Music, 2012.

Stacy Horn

I've written six non-fiction books, the most recent is Damnation Island: Poor, Sick, Mad, and Criminal in 19th-Century New York.

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