Sing With Us
SMFC prides itself on being the area's largest auditioned chorus. Twice annually, new members are invited to attend Open Rehearsals to preview SMFC's musical program and to learn more about becoming a member. Open Rehearsals are held during the first two weeks of the spring and fall seasons. Auditions take place immediately following rehearsal.
Interested singers will be asked to sing a short passage from one of the selections covered during rehearsal. An audition may also consist of vocalizing to determine range and section placement. The audition panel will consist of Music Director, Assistant Music Director and one or more Section Leaders. Singers will be evaluated based on vocal quality, tonal memory, musicality, and sectional need.
Candidates will be notified of the audition outcome within a few days by phone or email. Singers who cannot be admitted immediately may be placed on a waiting list and notified of future openings in the chorus.
The SMFC adheres to the following practices and guidelines to ensure that all rehearsals are productive and rewarding and that artistic goals are achieved.
Participation in SMFC requires a substantial commitment from each member in order to achieve musical goals and performance excellence. Membership is a privilege that demands the enthusiasm of a volunteer and the discipline and responsibility of a professional. Dependability and dedication are as vital to success in SMFC as musical ability.
Each member is required to learn all musical selections, including correct pitches, lyrics and dynamics. Music should be learned accurately as early in the season as possible so that the Directors can work on dynamics and musical interpretation. To aid learning, chorus members will be provided rehearsal recordings on CD.
Rehearsals are held Monday evenings from 7:00 – 9:00 p.m. Additional sectional and other rehearsals may be scheduled. Rehearsals are for learning and polishing music and for conducting other SMFC business. Effort is made to make rehearsals fun and rewarding for all members. Excessive talking and other disruptive behavior during rehearsal will not be tolerated.
Members are expected to attend all rehearsals and sing in all scheduled concerts and may miss no more than three rehearsals per season. Section Managers should be notified of absences as soon as possible. It is each member's responsibility to learn missed material and obtain directorial notes covered during absence. Second and third absences may prompt inquiries from Section Manager about membership status. Fourth absence will result in immediate dismissal from the performance season.
Rehearsals begin promptly at 7:00 p.m. Tardiness is disruptive to other members and will be regarded as absence. Late arrivals will be counted incrementally toward full absences as follows: 7-7:30 equals one-quarter absence, 7:30-8 equals one-half absence.
Rehearsals start at 7:00 p.m. with a warm-up. The warm-up is an integral part of the rehearsal and is not optional. Chorus members should be in place and ready to begin at 7:00 p.m.
Attendance at orchestra and technical rehearsals is mandatory. Absence may result in exclusion from performances.
All members are expected to assist in set-up/strike during tech week. Each member should commit to a minimum of two strike assignments during production week. Sign-up sheets will be posted prior to concert.
Each vocal section is assigned a Section Manager to monitor attendance and sectional progress and to carry out other duties as assigned by the Directors. Section Managers may answer questions regarding all musical or organizational concerns and may speak to members on matters of attendance, policy and musical issues. Section Managers should be addressed with courtesy at all times.
Standard concert attire shall consist of:
Full-length black skirt ($33), black beaded top [holiday] ($62), blue sparkle knit top [spring] ($45), black dress shoes, black hose. Skirts and tops must be ordered through Wardrobe Manager. Payment plans are available and some previously worn items may be available at reduced price.
Black tuxedo jacket, black pants, white wingtip pleated tuxedo shirt [holiday], bowtie [holiday] (provided), white collared dress shirt [spring], blue straight tie [spring] ($12), black shoes and socks. Affordable full tuxedos are available through Kohl’s and JC Penney. Moderately priced, used tuxedo separates are available through many local tuxedo retailers. Blue ties must be ordered through Wardrobe Manager.
Some concerts or engagements may have alternate dress arrangements. Changes to standard concert attire and cost, if any, will be announced at the beginning of each season.
Makeup and Jewelry:
Makeup should be applied generously in natural-looking colors to enhance your features from stage. Lips should be pink or red. False eyelashes are encouraged. No glitter makeup. Jewelry should be limited to plain stud earrings and wedding bands. No necklaces, bracelets, large or hoop earrings or fashion rings.
Dues are $40 per season and are due by the third rehearsal of the season. Checks should be made payable to SMFC and submitted to Section Manager.
SMFC offers a student membership package for high school students. The student membership package includes reduced dues of $20 per season. Appropriate concert attire will also be provided.
All sheet music required for participation in SMFC will be assigned through the Music Librarian. All sheet music remains the property of SMFC and is to be returned in usable condition at the end of the concert season to remain a member in good standing. Marking directorial notes in music is expected, however should only be done so in pencil. Members withdrawing before the end of the season must return all music to the Music Librarian or a Section Manager within two weeks of withdrawal.
All members are required to use a standard black choral folder to hold music for concert performances. Choral folders will be made available each season for a purchase price of $10.
Each season, SMFC coordinates a variety of member fundraisers to help meet production expenses. A reasonable fundraising effort on every member’s part is expected.
SMFC pursues performance opportunities and may schedule one to three extra engagements each season. Members are expected to participate in extra engagements unless informed that participation is optional.
Because we must stand in close proximity to each other, please do not come to rehearsals or performances smelling strongly of perfume, cologne, strongly scented hairspray and lotions, food, cigarette smoke, marijuana, alcohol, bad breath or body odor. Always use soap, deodorant and toothpaste.
All necessary information for participation in SMFC will be provided via periodic handouts. These may include information such as rehearsal schedules, performance and program details, directions, fundraising information, etc. Additionally, directorial notes and other information will be distributed via email. All handouts and emails are expected to be read as part of your participation in SMFC.
Member Code of Ethics:
This policy does not contain an exhaustive list of acceptable and/or unacceptable behavior. It provides a minimum set of ethical behavior to facilitate the goals of the Southeastern Massachusetts Festival Chorus (hereafter, “SMFC”).
- Each member is expected to be an outstanding member of the chorus and lead other members by example with attendance, performance, and behavior in rehearsals and concerts. Members should strive to be a positive role model to all other members of SMFC. Members are expected to behave in a mature, respectful, safe, fair and considerate manner.
- Members will not partake in consuming alcoholic beverages, or other intoxicating substances, when representing the chorus at rehearsals or concerts.
- Members will follow the direction of the Directors, and/or choir management, at all times and respect their decisions.
- Members are responsible for their own actions and behavior.
- Members should respect each other and not seek to make derogatory remarks or ‘jokes’ to other members that are of a personal, sexual, racist, discriminatory, intimidating or otherwise offensive nature.
- All members should conduct themselves in a way that reflects the values of SMFC and meets the expected high professional standards.
The Southeastern Massachusetts Festival Chorus (SMFC) is committed to providing an environment that is healthy, safe, and productive. SMFC is free from all forms of discrimination and conduct that can be considered harassing, coercive or disruptive, including sexual harassment. Sexual harassment is defined as unwanted sexual advances, or visual, verbal, or physical conduct of a sexual nature. This definition includes many forms of offensive behavior. The following is a partial list of sexual harassment examples:
- Unwanted sexual advances.
- Making or threatening reprisals after a negative response to sexual advances.
- Visual conduct that includes leering, making sexual gestures, or displaying of sexually suggestive objects or pictures, cartoons or posters.
- Verbal conduct that includes making or using derogatory comments, epithets, slurs or jokes.
- Verbal sexual advances or propositions.
- Verbal abuse of a sexual nature, graphic verbal commentaries about an individual's body, sexually degrading words used to describe an individual, or suggestive or obscene letters, notes or invitations.
- Physical conduct that includes touching, assaulting, or impeding or blocking movements. Any member who believes that they have been sexually, or otherwise, harassed, or has witnessed an incident that they believe might constitute sexual or other harassment, should immediately report the incident to the Director or a member of the Board of Directors. All allegations of sexual harassment will be quickly and discreetly investigated. To the extent possible, your confidentiality and that of any witnesses and the alleged harasser will be protected against unnecessary disclosure. When the investigation is completed, you will be informed of the outcome of the investigation.
SMFC COVID-19 Member Information Addendum
The SMFC is thrilled to be returning to rehearsals and concerts this fall! We have established the following temporary guidelines to ensure that all members feel secure and remain safe as we navigate through the on-going pandemic.
Only singers that are fully vaccinated will be allowed to participate this season. You will be required to show your completed vaccination card at the time of registration. If you do not have your card, you will not be allowed to register. In addition, all singers agree to get a booster shot if recommended by the CDC. (hint: Take a photo of your vaccination card with your phone so you’ll always have it with you.) If a member tests positive for COVID-19, they should contact SMFC leadership immediately. These guidelines are subject to change based on local, state, and CDC regulations.
We will allow up to 6 absences this season and require that any singer who feels ill, regardless of severity, to stay home. Perfect attendance and attendance stats will not be recognized this season.
All rehearsals will be recorded. It is encouraged that all singers use the recorded rehearsal if they cannot attend rehearsal or to review between rehearsals. The recording will be made available within 24 hours of the rehearsal. Watching a recorded rehearsal will not count as attending live rehearsal and member will be marked absent.
Warm-ups will be revised to exclude any exercise that creates excessive droplets. (i.e. lip trills)
We will keep singers spread out as much as possible. Please do not congregate in areas of high traffic and move to your seat as quickly as possible. Queen of Hearts will NOT be played this season.
Part CDs and/or ePractice files will be provided. In most cases, the tracks will include an actual person singing your respective part. Using these tracks is strongly encouraged to aid in learning vocal part, lyrics, rhythm, diction, vowel placement and dynamics.
Singers who have music from Spring 2020 who do not return this fall should return their music via another chorus member, drop-off during a regular rehearsal time, or mailing to 12 Rockland Street, Taunton, MA 02780.
2021 Holiday Concert
Our holiday concert will be abridged in length and performed in one act. There will be no intermission to prevent large gatherings of audience members in our lobby.
Audience members will be required to adhere to posted guidelines regarding mask usage.