Reflections on our 40th Season

40thlogo–By Linda

It takes a lot to keep a choir going for 40 years! In the case of Choir of the Sound, singers must come to rehearsals as well as practice on their own. Many singers also take on additional rehearsals for ensembles, solos, and dances, or provide extra assistance as section leaders. Skilled professionals direct and accompany the group, select music, plan rehearsals, and then adjust those plans on the fly. Administrators order and distribute the music each quarter, and handle mail, phone calls, and other practical matters. Volunteers form the board of trustees that oversees the business aspects of the group, while other volunteers plan and carry out the many other aspects of a full performance—sets, lighting, sound, choreography, staging, tech crew, and marketing, among others.

This kind of operation is expensive. We need the financial support of our donors large and small, and of the audiences who contribute money through ticket purchases, as well as morale through their applause and cheers. We rely on local businesses to buy ads in our programs, and to make in-kind donations. And we are grateful to live in a region that values performance enough to fund grants, and include auditoriums in the public schools.

Yes, it takes a lot to make the shows go on, year after year; but it gives so much more. Singers build their skills rehearsal by rehearsal, as our leaders coach us, and push us to try something new, something harder. Being part of a large group, placing our notes within a complex chord, allows us to become part of something bigger than ourselves, a whole that is greater than the sum of its parts. Performing live draws the audience into the experience; the immediate feedback you give us spurs us on to give our best, and the comments you provide afterward help us to shape our future.

In this anniversary season, we recognize with heartfelt gratitude all of the people who have been part of the last 40 years: Robert Metzger, who founded Choir of the Sound and led it for 27 years, Judy Filibeck, our second director, and Jeremy Matheis, who leads us now; the many instrumentalists who have accompanied our rehearsals and performances; the people who have joined and sung with us, some for just a few seasons, some who left when they had to and returned when they could, and the exceptional few who have been with us for our entire history; and the generous people who have supported our efforts. To everyone in the community who keeps this choir thriving: thank you for the first 40 years. And the way we can best demonstrate our appreciation is to invite you to stick with us and keep doing this for at least 40 more.