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Home: Choirs and Choral Music: Repertoire and performance:
Help with concert length/no of songs
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New User

Sep 19, 2009, 9:44 AM

Post #1 of 3 (103376 views)
Help with concert length/no of songs Can't Post

Hi, I've just set up a brand new community choir in Worcester. We've had 2 rehearsals so far and we've got about 20 members. I'm planning our first term concert in December and was thinking about branding it as an audience participation christmas singalong. Like a secular carol concert.

We're doing 5 non-christmas songs this half term (like let it be and bridge over troubled water). I was thinking after half term to tackle 5 christmas songs with full harmonies (like santa baby and baby it's cold outside) and then have 10 common christmas songs for audience participation (like jingle bells and frosty the snowman).

So i've booked the concert time as 2 hours which will include a break for mince pies. Do you think that 10 choir songs and 10 audience songs is too many or ok, and if ok, is 2 hours the right length?

The concert is at 10am on a Saturday morning so I'm hoping all ages will attend.

I've never done anything like this before so I really need some advice.


New User

Sep 20, 2009, 12:10 PM

Post #2 of 3 (103356 views)
Re: [helen] Help with concert length/no of songs [In reply to] Can't Post

Hi Helen,

The rule of thumb I tend to go by is about 3 minutes a carol/song. I usually set up a spreadsheet with the items and timing and get it to calculate everything for me... can send it you if you like!

Personally, for a morning performance like that, I'd keep it shorter with a five-minute 'stretch-your-legs' kind of break in the middle. I've been doing that quite a bit with one of my choirs over the last 18 months or so, and by keeping the programme intentionally short it makes the audience want more rather than 'they should have finished half an hour ago', and people tend to stay and chat afterwards too. I'd also cut down the number of audience participation numbers to 5-6.. if you're copying out the words for them it is a major hassle!

As for the actual length of your concert, it will depend very much on your arrangements so roughly time yourself singing each piece so that you get a clearer idea. For more regular repertoire, I often use the naxosmusiclibrary, which many libraries subscribe to....they have all the Naxos cd's available to listen to over the absolute god-send.

Hope some of that is of use!


New User

Sep 29, 2009, 5:28 PM

Post #3 of 3 (103129 views)
Re: [ichesworth] Help with concert length/no of songs [In reply to] Can't Post

Thanks for your help. I've reduced the concert length and will leave them wanting more

Thanks again!



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