This year, I took a year off of choirs other than Kow. After ten years of the Mixed Chorus, I thought it best to just not have anything on my plate for concerts and rehearsals.
Not having to give up a week of my vacation for a tour that would always leave me more ragged than I began. Not having to book off a lot of December to shoehorn in all the Christmas concerts.
In about May, or maybe a little earlier, I realized that, while it was refreshing to take a year off, I was jonesing for a new choir.
I was certainly not going to head back to the Mixed Chorus, since every year, the choir gets younger and younger. Hell, I was "old guard" back in 1997. I didn't really want to be the guy who's just hanging around because there's no place to go.
In February, I saw Oran's performance of an entire concert of African songs, and I was enraptured.
I had a few friends in the choir, like Astro and his wife, and the Chungs. And there's an old friend from Moose Jaw there as well.
When Bob, my Mixed Chorus director, emailed me asking if I wanted to apply for the Greenwood Singers, I was torn. I certainly couldn't join TWO choirs and expect to be sane.
So it became a matter of, "Which choir would I enjoy myself more in?"
While I like Bob as a conductor, I've been singing with him for ten years. I thought it was time for a change, as I'm sure I'd learn different stuff from Scott Leithead, one of the conductors from Oran. Plus, I couldn't pass up singing with some old friends.
So I booked an audition with Oran.
On Wednesday, I was pretty nervous. It was the first time I had to audition for a choir in ten years. Although Astro kept saying "You're a guy who can sing. How can you NOT get in?"
For my a cappella piece, I decided to do "Spider-Man." It's one of my only solos, and shows off most of my higher range. While my low range is good, it doesn't work for volume, which is something I thought I'd be needing.
Before the audition, Scott had me fill out this form about myself. It asked what I brought to the party, what things I was hoping to learn, experience, etcetera.
Scott welcomed me and said, "You look familiar."
"Well, I DO sing in Apocalypse Kow with Astro."
"Right! Kow! Now I remember. Kow's awesome."
I was still nervous, but it was a little better now that Scott remembered who I was.
On the sheet, it asked which choirs I've been with. So, with confidence, I wrote the following:
A.E. Peacock Jazz Choir (1991-1994)
A.E. Peacock Concert Choir (1991-1994)
University of Alberta Mixed Chorus (1995-2004)
Apocalypse Kow (1997-present)
When he looked over the sheet, he yelled out, "You went to PEACOCK?"
Me: "Yeah, that's where I went to high school."
Scott: "Who did you sing under?"
Me: "Allison Litt."
Scott: "Oh, Allison. She's amazing, isn't she?"
Me: "I enjoyed myself in that choir."
So, another point in my favour.
When I sang Spider-Man, I didn't realize how much I'd miss the rest of Kow backing me up. Man, that's scary, singing a cappella when you're solo.
I did well in my listening tests, and had a decent sight reading test.
So I thought I had a better than even chance of getting in. It wasn't the greatest audition known to man, in my opinion, but we are talking about me here, who's pretty self-critical.
So I'd be reloading the website every few hours, looking for the audition results.
They finally went up this morning, and I'm now a part of Oran.
So, my choir adventures will continue for the next year or few years.
I'm happy and relieved. Because I hate auditions.
It should be a very fun time.