As far as choirs go, you could say I’ve been around. I’m the Choral Lady of the Night. I’ll sing you to sleep. I’ve sung, directed, accompanied, and even co-founded a group. Suffice it to say, I’ve been with a lot of singers over the years. I’ve tasted the choral rainbow. Eaten from the singer smorgasbord. That sounds off. You get my gist.
…and I’ve figured out how to be the best choir singer…
Are you ready? HERE’S HOW:
1. Show up late. Make a big scene about getting to your seat, which is in the middle. Make sure to trip over a few people on your way.
2. Never have a pencil EVER. Or use pen.
3. Ask to hear your part played by the piano. Multiple times. In one sitting.
4. Shamelessly request to switch seats because you’re having trouble holding pitch (but don’t admit that). Do so publicly, preferably during the middle of rehearsal.
5. Respond to director’s tempo shifts by singing louder and hoping everyone else follows. Emit smallish yet condescending sighs when they don’t.
6. Demand that you are a first soprano, even if you can’t sing above an F5.
7. Fail to sing a minor third (ascending OR descending).
9. Sing the following vowel sounds: “ah, AY, ee, oh, oo”
10. Using your best fire-alarm imitation, sing with tight, unwavering, piercing tones. When asked to darken or create more lift in your sound, sing louder.
9. Alternately, sing with unexamined vibrato all the time. Especially while singing Eric Whitacre.
10. Come to rehearsal sick. Apologize, even though you’re unbreakable. Cough or sneeze uncontrollably and infect everyone around you.
11. If you’re a soprano, make sure to be really confused when you don’t have the melody. Proceed by singing louder than the melody.
12. Just scoop. Always scoop up to your note. Bonus points if the scoop begins a fifth or lower than your actual starting pitch.
13. Keep your cell phone on full volume. Use a top-40 song as a ringtone. Answer your phone during rehearsal.
14. Look at your music, texts, choirmate’s boobs, or stare off into space during rehearsal. Look anywhere but the director.
15. Don’t have your music readily available. Or have it completely out of order, half-mangled by your dog, or missing entire sections. Try to hide this from your director.
16. Drink coffee, soda, or alcohol during rehearsal. Do so unapologetically.
17. Play the piano before rehearsal. “Heart and Soul,” “Fur Elise,” “Don’t Stop Believin’,” or “Lean On Me.” Golden.
18. If you’re a bass, attempt unabashedly to sing your lowest note. Outdo your neighbor. Repeat in the opposite direction using falsetto.
19. Or attempt to mate-call all dogs within a 5-mile radius by having a “who can sing the highest note” contest with your fellow sopranos.
20. Insist that you couldn’t access the recordings online, or that you did not receive the latest e-mail with the rehearsal schedule, or that the diction MP3s did not work on your PC, or that the PDFs containing the IPA “didn’t open.”
21. Sing with a deadpan face. Emotion is for the weak.
How are YOU being the “best” singer in the choir?