The CoViD-19 crisis has had an enormous impact on choral organizations and Choral Arts New England is proud to support our choral communities as they weather these uncertain times. Choral Arts New England Emergency Grants are a special initiative to provide immediate assistance to organizations experiencing difficulty due to circumstances related to COVID-19. Applications will be accepted via our online application form until 11:59 p.m.
As it marks its 40th year of supporting New England choruses, Choral Arts New England is launching a two-year campaign to double its grant-making endowment. Founded in 1980 as the Alfred Nash Patterson Foundation, the organization has built an endowment of more than $300,000; to date, its annual grants program has given more than 260 grants, totaling over $330,000, to support choral singing in the six New England states. Grants have helped create new choruses, reinvigorated long-established choruses, and supported transformative experiences for choral singers, their audiences, and their communities.
While funds available for grants have remained steady for over a decade, both the number of high-quality proposals and the amount requested have more than doubled in that time. The New England choral community has greatly expanded over the decades, and choruses in today’s world—our communities' voices—play a unique role in building community and giving inspiration.
A new YouTube video series, "Talking Choral Music," featuring interviews with noted composers, conductors and business leaders in the choral community, will be launched on Friday, Oct. 16. The host is Cantilena Chamber Choir Music Director Andrea Goodman. See the programs at https://youtu.be/xKQQ3LSWSnE
The Rhode Island Civic Chorale & Orchestra presents five online lectures on Wednesday evenings this fall that highlight a number of essential composers and beloved choral works, from medieval chant to the 20th Century, weaving a narrative that brings insight to singers and non-singers alike, regardless of experience and prior knowledge. Each lecture is given by RICCO Music Director Joshua W. Rohde, except for that on November 4, which is presented by Nicholas Rocha. The series will be presented Zoom; subscribers will receive a link to each lecture by email within one day of each event.
For Fall 2020, the Back Bay Chorale is offering not performances but instead an innovative weekly opportunity for BBC audience members and friends to learn more about choral music and the community we create through our song. Led by Artistic Director Scott Allen Jarrett and Associate Conductor Katherine Chan, and joined by a distinguished panel of guests from across the globe, the sessions will offer weekly group singing, explore topics about and around the music we sing, and highlight other singing communities as we seek to better understand our own.
The Choral Arts New England chorus calendar is now listing online events (webcasts, virtual concerts, webinars) that are of interest to the choral community. To list your event, use the online form and put the event link in the "Location/Address" box; you may leave the city/state/Zip fields blank. Events must take place at a certain date and time (since this is a calendar), but need not list a physical location.
Choral Arts New England has announced the funding of 13 grants, for a total of $13,500, in the 2020–2021 season. The funded projects were selected from 51 proposals received. Last year, 52 applications were received and $13,650 was given in grants. The grant recipients are Cappella Clausura (Newtonville, Mass.), CONCORA (Hartford, Conn.), Concord Chorus (Concord, Mass.), Counterpoint (Montpelier, Vt.), Emmanuel Music (Boston, Mass.), Grand Monadnock Youth Choirs (Peterborough, N.H.), Handel and Haydn Society (Boston, Mass.), Hartford Chorale (Hartford, Conn.), Music on the Hill (Wilton, Conn.), Providence Singers (Providence, R.I.), Una Voce Chamber Choir (Bath, Maine), Voices of Concinnity (Mansfield Center, Conn.), and Wescustago Youth Chorale (Yarmouth, Maine).
Is your organization struggling with strategic issues during the Covid19 crisis? Do you need help with a strategic planning for marketing direction, impact measurement, planning for growth, board governance, or even succession planning?
Community Action Partners (a program of the Harvard Business School Association of Boston) offers single session brainstorming sessions for Boston-area nonprofits and their management needs. Brainstorm sessions are three-hour meetings to discuss a clearly defined challenge. Typically five to seven alumni volunteers participate in each facilitated session. The program is available for consultation during the Covid19 crisis—brainstorm applications are accepted on a rolling basis.
The worldwide COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in an outpouring of help, advice, and (online) music. Here we give some resources of particular interest to New England choruses, and link to resource pages from others with similar interests. We welcome your contributions to this list.
The Choral Arts New England calendar is a great resource if you'd like to learn about patterns and statistics — and if you're interested in learning if a particular work has been sung (much), or what your favorite soloist is doing. You can get charts (as well as numbers) of the number of events at any time during the year, for the past five years. You can also search the calendar to find performances of interest during that time period.
"Let us not lose sight of those who, as individuals or institutions, have helped us make music, who agree with us that music, especially choral music, may be the best evidence of eternal life, not in the heavenly sense, but in the awareness that when we sing, we bring music to life, and that same music brings life to others in return."
— Richard Coffey, 2009 Lifetime Achievement Award recipient