Put Your Creativity to Work

Chordaires in Spring Show, “Walk the Red Carpet,” March 26, 2022

Linda Ryan

Can you write? Can you make a poster or do any kind of crafts? Can you find and coordinate appropriate props? Can you dance? Read a script? How about take photos or videos? Do you have website skills? Are you a salesperson?

As a new member of the chorus, I was amazed at the diverse creative skills required for the production of the Chordaires Show Chorus presented March 26. You can share just about any skill you have developed during your long, rich life as a member of Chordaires.

The singing, of course, is the primary reason for joining. But your voice is probably fine, even now that you are older. There are only two requirements: One, you cannot be tone deaf. Two, you must love singing—not necessarily like a professional or as a soloist—but as a person who sings along with the radio in the car or with friends around a campfire. If you have any musical training at all, so much the better.

When you sing along with music playing and no one claps their hands over their ears and says, “Stop, you’re off key!” then the Chordaires would welcome you with open arms.

I was a bit intimidated by the idea of going to a Chordaires rehearsal and presenting myself as a prospect for the chorus. I have zero credentials. At this stage of my life, though, I’m seeking new adventures and trying to do things I haven’t yet done. So, I went to a rehearsal with my neighbor Patsy.

We were greeted at the door by a couple of members who asked us whether we sing in the higher range or the lower. Patsy was assigned to sing as a lead, and I as a baritone. I soon figured out I am a bass in women’s barbershop style, an alto in other styles.

Before we left, we were armed with recordings of professionals singing our parts and books of the sheet music for the upcoming shows. At home, as I started listening to and singing along with the recordings, I found it to be fun. The practice sessions with the others singing our parts were a place to build new friendships and get support and encouragement, building our confidence.

My voice is not strong and certainly not as strong as when I was younger. And I’ve never been one to seek out the spotlight or perform for a crowd. That’s the fun of a chorus. You’re part of a whole, part of something bigger than yourself. The blending of many voices in harmony requires only the ability to hear tones accurately, learn your part, and love singing.

The Spring Show was a sell-out. I hope everyone who came enjoyed it and will come to the next one. We so appreciate the support of our friends and neighbors and want our performances to be worth their investment of time and money.

As others helped Patsy and me learn singing skills, we got to contribute our skills in other areas, she as an artist and me as a writer. We hope that if you like to sing in private, you will push yourself out of your comfort zone and step into the Chordaires to learn and prepare for the next show, and to benefit from the other skills you bring to the table.