The Benefits of Singing in the Choir - dummies

The Benefits of Singing in the Choir

By Pamelia S. Phillips

Many people thoroughly enjoy being in a choir. You get a chance to sing different kinds of music, and you get to be around others who share your interest in music. Making music with a group of people may give you just the balance you need between practicing alone at home and singing with a group.

The following list details some of the benefits you gain from singing with a choir.

  • You discover how to listen carefully. When singing in a choir, you have to listen so that your voice blends with the voice of the person next to you, as well as with the sounds of the particular type of song you’re singing. If the music requires a specific style of singing, you have to work to make sure that you’re making the appropriate sound with healthy technique.

  • You discover how to monitor your sound based on how it feels. If you can’t hear your voice standing out, you have to rely on the feeling to determine whether your technique is still in good shape. Monitoring how your voice feels is a good idea because each room is different — you can’t rely on the sound bouncing back to you.

    Sometimes choral singers cup their hand around their ear to hear their voice. You can try using this technique to direct the sound of your voice back to your ears. Just make sure that the person next to you doesn’t think that you’re trying to block out the sound of their voice.

  • You get an opportunity to work on your ear. Picking out your part when the other voices of the choir are surrounding you is a good workout for your ear. Solo singers may not have someone else singing different notes in their ear.

    The choral singer may be mixed up with other voices singing other parts and may have to rely on her ability to read music or really listen for her note in a chord.

  • You get a chance to work on your social skills. In choirs, you often find people who like similar music or are inspired by beautiful music. You may feel right at home around people with similar interests, which can boost your sense of belonging.

  • You get to travel with the choir. You may have to raise money to go on trips, but traveling with fellow musicians who enjoy making music in beautiful concert halls can make it worth your while. Teenagers and young singers often enjoy going on the road with the choir because they get to travel around doing what they enjoy: singing with their peers.

  • You can work on reducing your performance anxiety by singing with a group. Onstage with your peers, you may find that your anxieties about performing dissolve. If you feel comfortable within a group, you may be able to transfer that comfort level to your solo singing.

    If you suffer from anxiety about singing in public, slowly work your way from singing in the choir to auditioning for one of the solos with the choir.

The challenge and joy of singing in a group may be just the lift you need at the end of a long week of work. Singing is a wonderful release and opportunity to express your thoughts and feelings through music and singing. Joining a choir may give you that regular opportunity to enjoy singing if you just don’t have the time to practice on your own.