Do you like to sing in small groups at festive occasions? We welcome potential new members of all voice parts. Please come to one of our Wednesday rehearsals. We rehearse at Calvary United Methodist Church, 1415 Miller Ave, in Ann Arbor from 7:30 pm to 9:30 pm from March to December. The best times to start are at the beginning of our Renaissance preparation (March), and caroling preparation (October). However you can come at any time of the year. Potential members can attend up to 2 rehearsals before auditioning with our musical director. You do not need to prepare a piece for the audition.
The Arbor Consort performs in quartets or quintets for the seven weeks of the Michigan Renaissance Festival, at other private and public events, and at individual caroling gigs around Christmastime. Our Renaissance season is from March through September with gigs every weekend from mid-August to the first weekend in October. Renaissance festival gigs are all day affairs from 9am to 7pm with about 2 1/2 hours of singing spread out over this time. Our caroling season is from October to December, with 1-3 hour long gigs at various locations during the first 3 weeks of December. We take January and February off.
People who have other singing commitments often find that they can join The Arbor Consort without conflict since our performances are primarily in August/September, with some dates in December. Because we only perform in small groups, singers are never required to be available on a particular performance date.
Our Renaissance music is pre-1620, and our holiday repertoire is pre-20th century. We sing in English, Italian, German, French, Spanish, Latin, and Hebrew, but most songs are in English. Most songs are SATB, SSATB/SAATB, and the music is provided. Our repertoire for each season contains about 40 songs. New members are directed to a subset of 25 songs in that list, so they are not overwhelmed by this. When we perform, we are usually one-to-a-part. However, if members are unsure they can attend rehearsals for a while before signing up for a gig, or sing with someone else on their part, until they are more sure on their own.
We sing our Renaissance music in Italian Renaissance, Tudor, or Elizabethan costumes, and we carol in clothing circa 1880-1915. Please see our photos and videos pages for an idea of how we dress. Members make or buy their own costume, but you don’t need to know how to sew to join our group. There are several costumers and sewers in the group who are ready to help you get prepared with your garb.
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