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TBC Worship Choir

 

WORSHIP CHOIR FRIENDS: I'm thrilled to let you know the details of our Christmas 2020 plans for the Worship Choir; you can also see me walk through this info in the video above.


The Lord has been so faithful through all of the changes related to covid, and I believe He has provided yet again by giving us a plan for this fall as we work toward Christmas.
As I see it, there are two main issues to solve related to our presenting a Worship Choir Christmas musical this year:
  1. We have a shortened schedule: Normally, we would already be two or three weeks into our fall choir session at this point, and due to various scheduling issues, we won't be able to begin choir until right around the beginning of October. We're looking at much less rehearsal time, and this fact impacts the number of anthems we're able to present.
  2. We are going to observe social distancing during our rehearsals and our presentation. Rehearsals are not the problem: we can rehearse in the Worship Center and really spread out in the pews (not the choir loft). However, we can't put our choir in the loft and still be socially distanced; this fact impacts the format of our Christmas program.
We've prayed and asked the Lord for wisdom, and I believe He has given us a plan for Christmas choir that solves both of the problems mentioned above. It will look different than our typical seasonal presentations, but I really think God is in this and will use us for His glory.

 

What we're going to do: Christmas Night of Praise
If you attended or saw the video of the recent FAMS Night of Praise, or if you've been a part of the Night of Praise events we've had in previous years, you're familiar with the format:
  • Lots of congregational singing (in this case, familiar Christmas carols)
  • 3 Worship Choir anthems
  • Soloists on various songs
  • Live music from our band and praise team
  • Gospel presentation by Pastor Nate
This format solves the problem of the reduced number of anthems we're able to learn. We'll be working on 3 anthems and still have a complete event.

 

How we're going to do it:
We want to help keep our brothers and sisters safe by social distancing. As I mentioned above, rehearsals are no problem: we'll rehearse all spread out in the Worship Center pews. But the actual presentation is obviously another thing. How do you socially distance a choir in our loft? Well, I think the Lord has solved this issue for us as well.
We're going to pre-record both audio & video of our choir singing our three anthems, and we'll show these three videos on the big screens during our Christmas Night of Praise event. We'll intersperse the three choir videos with our live congregational singing led by our band & praise team and live Scripture readings during Christmas Night of Praise. There will be no in-person choir during Christmas Night of Praise; our participation will be via pre-recorded video.
  • Video: Using our great new video equipment you've seen on all our livestreams these past few months, we'll video our choir singing each of the three anthems. The video taping will happen during our 4 full-choir rehearsals and our 4 sectional audio recording sessions (more on that below). Keith and I will then edit these videos together to make an effective and attractive video presentation.
  • Audio: To help us get the best sound possible, we're going to record the audio (your voices singing) for each vocal part separately. The sopranos will record their parts of the three choir anthems on one Wednesday night, the altos on another Wednesday night, tenors on another, and basses on yet another. I'll take the audio of all four parts, combine it with the instrumental tracks we purchase for the anthems, and mix everything so that it sounds great. This is (basically) the method we used when we did the "We Will Remember" Praise Team video at the beginning of the lockdown period: we used the video everyone shot, and mixed the audio separately, and then combined them for the final product. In the case of the choir videos for Christmas Night of Praise, we'll combine the videos we shoot during our rehearsals & recording sessions with the audio we record.
When we're going to do it:
  • 4 Rehearsals for the full Worship Choir (everybody) in the Worship Center:
    • Wednesday, September 30, 7:30pm--8:45pm
    • Wednesday, October 7, 7:30pm--8:45pm
    • Wednesday, October 14, 7:30pm--8:45pm
    • Wednesday, October 21, 7:30pm--8:45pm
  • Audio Recording Sessions by vocal sections:
    • Sopranos (both 1st & 2nd sopranos): Wednesday, October 28, 7:30pm--8:45pm
    • Altos: Wednesday, November 4, 7:30pm--8:45pm
    • Tenors: Wednesday, November 11, 7:30pm--8:45pm
    • Basses: Wednesday, November 18, 7:30pm--8:45pm
  • Presentation: Christmas Night of Praise on Christmas Eve (December 24), multiple service times that afternoon / evening. We'll show the videos of the choir singing our anthems (the videos we will have pre-recorded) that night, interspersed between the live congregational singing (led by band & praise team; no in-person choir on the actual night of the event).
We were going to have an issue with our regular Christmas Eve service this year regardless of what we did with Worship Choir. We usually have around 600 people in attendance for the Christmas Eve service, and obviously, we can't put that many people in the Worship Center at one time while observing social distancing. We'll do multiple (two, maybe three) live "Nights of Praise" on Christmas Eve to accommodate the crowds, and we'll either use online registration or (free) tickets to control the crowd flow.

 

What you need to do first:
  • Pray and ask the Lord if He would have you participate in Christmas Night of Praise. I'm excited about this plan, and I really hope you will all dive in with me as we try something new.
  • Check your calendar for the dates listed above; see if you'll be available. We'll need you to make as many of the 4 full-Choir rehearsals as possible, plus the 1 audio recording session for your vocal part.
  • Register for Worship Choir Christmas Session at the bottom of this page. We'll need you to register so we know how much music to purchase and how many notebooks and CDs to make.
Anticipating Questions:
  • "So, I'm confused: Are we singing on Christmas Eve or not?" Well...yes and no: you won't be singing live and in-person that night, but that night we will show the pre-recorded videos of the choir singing our three anthems.
  • "Can we use our notebooks (printed music), or will we have to memorize?" You can use your notebooks.
  • "Since we're video recording on several different nights, what will we wear? Surely you don't expect me to wear the same thing for 8 Wednesdays in a row?" You're right; that would be ridiculous. Just wear your regular clothes that you would normally wear to rehearsal; we'll forgo Christmas-themed attire for this presentation.
  • "I'm going to be out of town on Christmas Eve. Can I still participate?" Absolutely. If you make the full-Choir rehearsals and the one audio recording session for your vocal part, you'll be a part of the video that shows on Christmas Eve whether you're in town for the Christmas Eve event or not.
  • "Will we be singing to live music (will the band be playing), or will we be using accompaniment tracks?" We'll use accompaniment tracks purchased from the publishers.

REGISTER FOR WORSHIP CHOIR CHRISTMAS SESSION (CLICK HERE)