There’s more than just safety in numbers — there’s community, there’s power and, with the Vernon Community Singers, there’s an impressive choral spectacle.
Registration for the Vernon Community Singers, which celebrated its 25th year last season, is open throughout the month of September. Conductor Terry Logan said that more than 90 singers have already signed up to join the community, which often boasts numbers in the triple digits.
Logan, a longtime piano and voice instructor, said everyone is welcome to join the all-ages family choir that currently boasts three generations of singers.
“We are a multi-generational choir. You can all sing together,” Logan said, adding that people are welcome to sing with their teenaged children or grandchildren. “We do definitely have some younger members and the music lends itself to that.”
The choir puts on two performances per year at Trinity United Church: one in December and again in the spring. Each concert also features local musicians, which are often students.
“We always do something unexpected,” Logan said of the choir’s live performance. “It’s always a little surprise.”
Rehearsals for the choir began at the start of September and run until the Peace on Earth Christmas program in December before starting back up in January until the season closes in April.
However, while rehearsals are only once per week, Logan said members are encouraged to practice as often as possible.
“I record everything. I record all the parts of all the songs,” she said, adding that all members have access to the recordings for rehearsal purposes.
This year’s winter program, which runs Dec. 7 and 8, is comprised of traditional favourites and features The Amente Ringers directed by Trudy McGrath and their four octaves of handbells. The spring program throws back to the ’60s with the tunes of The Beatles, Gordon Lightfoot, Simon and Garfunkel, Joni Mitchel and more.
Beyond the music, a key element to the choir, Logan said, is its commitment to the community.
“Because they are a community-minded choir, they want to do something to give back to the community,” Logan said, adding that community donation is an integral part of the choir.
Included in the Singers’ charitable donations this year are awards totalling more than $1,400 to Laurel McEachnie at Alexis Park Elementary, Alison Norris at BX Elementary, Lori Robinson at Ellison Elementary, Lori Johnson at the Vernon Community Music School and the Vernon Registered Music Teachers’ Association.
The $500 Molly Boyd scholarship will also be given to a graduating student who is pursuing music studies. School District 22 will choose the student for this scholarship. The deadlines for funding applications are Oct. 31 and Jan. 15.
It’s that commitment to the community and the music that keeps Logan coming back.
“I love their desire to learn. Everyone is very open to learn,” Logan said. “Teaching people to sing is what I do.”
Rehearsals are Wednesdays from 7-9 p.m. at Trinity United Church. Registration closes at the end of September. For more information, contact the singers online at vcsingers.org.