Queens County Com­mu­nity Choir seek­ing singers

South Shore Breaker - - ARTS & ENTERTAINM­ENT - AETHNE HINCHLIFFE

In a cou­ple of weeks, the

Queens County Com­mu­nity Choir will re­sume, and di­rec­tor Gre­gory Wat­ters is hop­ing some new voices join the group.

Wat­ters took over as di­rec­tor last au­tumn. Since then, a few things have changed, and he also has a lot of plans for the choir. One of the changes is that the tenor and bass voices have joined forces to be­come one – mean­ing the choir is now so­prano, alto and bass.

“The mem­ber­ship was not that strong amongst the men, and it was a won­der­ful op­por­tu­nity to truly start developing a bet­ter sound, more con­fi­dence, and that’s been a real suc­cess,” said Wat­ters.

At this year’s Christmas con­cert, Wat­ters says he’s hop­ing to get some young voices in­volved. He’s also hop­ing to hold a sec­ond per­for­mance around that time, which would be a fundraiser.

“And as far as rep­e­ti­tion for the au­di­ence – no. So what they’re go­ing to hear at Ki­wa­nis will not be what they’re go­ing to hear in our other per­for­mance, which means they’ve re­ally got to get out there and see it,” he said.

An­dre Haines will be con­tin­u­ing his role as the choir’s ac­com­pa­nist. Haines com­posed a cou­ple of the pieces the choir per­formed last Christmas. He also com­posed a piece of mu­sic for the spring pro­gram, and Wat­ters says that tra­di­tion will con­tinue.

The choir, which prac­tices weekly on Tues­day nights, has ap­prox­i­mately 40 mem­bers. Wat­ters says he’d love to see some more young peo­ple – high school stu­dents and young adults – join the group. He would like to see mem­bers with dif­fer­ent back­grounds and ex­pe­ri­ences.

“You don’t have to read mu­sic, you don’t have to be an ex­pe­ri­enced singer,” said Wat­ters. “You can just come in, have that trust, and be­cause we work as a com­mu­nity, ev­ery­one’s work­ing to help every­body else out.”

A typ­i­cal re­hearsal starts promptly at 6:30 p.m. From there, the choir does warmups.

Fol­low­ing war­mup, the choir moves into its reper­toire. At times, the re­hearsal will involve sec­tion­als. There is a 15-minute break to al­low for some so­cial time. Ev­ery­thing wraps up at 8:30 p.m.

Wat­ters says the re­hearsals are very well planned, and the choir moves quickly through its ma­te­rial.

As to why peo­ple should con­sider try­ing the choir, Wat­ters says it’s fun, chal­leng­ing, it pro­vides peo­ple the op­por­tu­nity to learn new things, peo­ple be­come more in­volved in their com­mu­nity, and there’s a won­der­ful sense of ca­ma­raderie and re­spon­si­bil­ity. “But mostly it’s fun.”

The first re­hearsal of the sea­son is set to take place Sept. 17, which will also be reg­is­tra­tion night.

Any­one in­ter­ested in join­ing the choir can mes­sage the Face­book page or email queen­sc­c­choir@gmail.com.

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