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Opera North takes you from couch to chorus

The Opera North chorus in Kiss Me Kate. Pic: Tristram Kenton
The Opera North chorus in Kiss Me Kate. Pic: Tristram Kenton

Join a choir in your own living room this summer with the launch of a new digital choir by Opera North.

Starting in July, From Couch to Chorus will involve four weekly online sessions using the Zoom conferencing app, with participants learning to sing operatic choruses under the tuition of a professional choral director and members of the Opera North chorus.

Each one-hour session will be specifically aimed at soprano, alto, tenor and bass voices, and no previous experience nor ability to read music is required. You can even be helped to find the right session if you don’t know your own vocal range.

By the end, the choir will be able to sing choruses from Bizet’s Carmen and Smetana’s The Bartered Bride, as well as the rousing Chorus of the Hebrew Slaves from Verdi’s Nabucco. In the final workshop, singers from all vocal parts will team up to perform a full virtual chorus.

The idea grew out of the popularity of the Sing ON weekly singing sessions Opera North held in venues around Leeds before the pandemic restrictions. The company’s education team has continued to run these sessions online.

A variety of resources will be used to help people master the basics of opera quickly and easily, and a recording will be sent to participants after each workshop. Payment is on a "pay as you feel" basis.

“We aim to give everyone a taste of what it’s like to be a member of an operatic chorus, learning exciting repertoire and developing singing skills as part of a group,” explained Jacqui Cameron, the company’s education director.

To take part, sign up online here, where there is an option to be helped to find your vocal range by ON team members. The sessions will be held on Mondays and Tuesdays over four weeks from July 20- August 11, with the final performance on August 12.


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