High School Chorus Handbook/Syllabus




    2016 - 2017

    Mrs. Newton, Vocal Music


    Room 114


    Mrs. Newton - Room 114

    The following is a description of the purpose of the chorus, goals to be accomplished, and what you will learn:


    - A varied repertoire including but not limited to secular, folk, multi-cultural, classical, Broadway, spirituals, madrigals, etc... both accompanied and a cappella.

    - Opportunities for students to perform solos as part of choir repertoire and on an individual basis through NYSSMA. Auditions will be announced for soloists as they are available - ALL students are encouraged to audition!

    - Opportunity to audition for the Erie County Chorus.

    - Expansion of students’ personal “library of musical knowledge” through singing and listening that will expand and grow throughout membership in this choir and hopefully, after you graduate.

    Vocal Production:

    - Learning, shaping and improving one’s singing ability through posture, proper breathing, warm-ups and repertoire.

    - Learning, shaping and improving the choir’s singing ability through listening, cooperation, development of musical skills and team attitude (as well as all of the above!)

    Sight-Singing/Ear Training:

    - Development of a knowledge of and capability to read rhythms and sight sing - recognizing pitches, key signatures, and modality using solfege syllables and song text.


    - Preparation for and participation in concerts, community events, NYSSMA, Collage and various other music festivals.

    - Learning and demonstration of proper performance etiquette.


    - Develop skills necessary to become an active, focused and full participating member of a music ensemble.

    Character Building and Goal-Setting:

    - Ability to set personal and group goals.

    - Growth as musicians while learning, improving, striving and having fun!



    General Expectations & Rules of Conduct

    * Students should arrive prepared to sing with folder and pencil.

    * Warm-ups will begin promptly.

    * Music given to students is to be treated with respect. All music folder and music should be marked with student's name and folder slot #. All marks are to be made in pencil.

    * Classroom instruments only be played with the permission of the music teacher.

    * Food, gum and beverages (except bottled water) are not allowed in the rehearsal room practice rooms, or auditorium.

    * Personal electronics (cell phones, mp3 players, game units, etc.) are prohibited and will be confiscated if used.

    * Students are responsible for acquiring the correct performance attire for concerts. Please refer to the section on concert dress for more information.

    * All concerts are mandatory. Plan your schedules now.

    PERFORMANCES: (Mandatory)

    Winter Vocal Concert - Tues., December 13th – 6:30 pm

    Martin Luther King Assembly – Fri., January 13th - School day performance

    Music In Our Schools Month Audition: TBA March - School day performance

    Collage Performance: Tuesday May 10th, 2017 - 7:00 pm

    Spring Vocal Concert – Tues., April 25th – 6:30 pm - ** please note that there will be a mandatory after school rehearsal in preparation for this concert: *Thursday, April 21st: 2:30 - 4:30 pm

    Concert Expectations

    Attendance at all concert events is mandatory. Ensembles are dependent upon 100% participation from each and every member, especially if there are solos or only a couple students covering a part. Sports, dance recitals, vacations or part-time work are examples of conflicts that are NOT considered legitimate. Please be aware of these additional policies regarding concerts:

    1. In the event of extenuating or emergency circumstances such as personal illness or death in the family, please contact Mrs. Newton as soon as possible. Any such cases will be handled on an individual basis.

    2. Students are to be dressed in uniform, in their seats and prepared to sing at the designated warm-up time, not simply entering the room. Your grade is affected by being late to a performance.

    3. Concerts present the result of months of dedicated hard work. Nothing less than the highest levels of concentration and exemplary behavior are expected.

    4. Students are required to stay for the entire concert. It is rude and disrespectful to the audience and the members of other ensembles when parents and students leave early.

    5. Proper concert etiquette must be observed by students when sitting in the audience. There is to be absolutely no talking or noise while a performance is taking place. Applause is the only acceptable gesture of appreciation. Booing, howling, screaming, whistling, yelling or shouting are unacceptable.

    6. Concert dress is required. It is important that the ensembles are dressed uniformly; therefore, the director will strictly enforce the concert dress policy. Students who are not dressed properly may not be allowed to perform. You are still required to attend. Please

    ** Not adhering to any of the above guidelines may result in a lowered grade, parents/guardians contacted, a letter sent home, and other possible consequences. **

    Rehearsal Expectations

    Rehearsals are a time of skills acquisition, focus, growth and musicianship. In order to make the most of our daily rehearsals, all students are expected to follow these rules and procedures. The points listed below not only are determining factors in the grade you will receive, but are also requisites for membership in the City Honors Chorus:

    **1.) You are expected to be attentive and on task at all times. Chorus members should demonstrate a positive attitude and willingness to participate as an individual and as part of a team.

    2.) Be on time to class