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The Ann Arbor Youth Chorale’s mission is to transform young lives and enhance the cultural life of Southeast Michigan through music education, performance of quality choral music, and collaboration at the highest level of artistic expression– all in a safe, inclusive environment.

2020-2021 COVID-19 Update

As we look with anticipation toward our 2020-2021 season, alongside the developing and swiftly changing circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic, we want to assure our AAYC choristers and families that safety remains our primary focus in all AAYC practices and decisions. We are dedicated to providing a calm, supportive, and fulfilling singing experience that honors the AAYC mission to enrich the lives of children and our community through the vehicle of excellent singing and a community where children can safely make music during this time of uncertainty. 

During this unparalleled time, we’ve been asked to exercise responsiveness and adaptiveness as the science of COVID-19 continues to be discovered; our 2020-2021 choir season will also ask for our flexibility and nimbleness. In response to the Ann Arbor Public Schools decision to start the 2020-21 school year in a virtual/remote format, Ann Arbor Youth Chorale choirs will meet via Zoom to learn, make music and share friendship through December 2020. We are excited to focus our learning and music making on creating our first professionally produced virtual choir recording. The 21st century music performance and technology skills that our singers will learn during this time will be a valuable experience that will benefit our singers far beyond this season’s virtual  performance.  We are currently researching the hire of a professional sound engineer to provide the artistry of technology required to assemble a stellar performance. To ensure accessibility of virtual learning for all of our members, we kindly welcome donations of gently used laptops/tablets.

For the Fall semester, Mrs. Kidd and Mrs. Powell will meet with singers via Zoom during our regularly scheduled Tuesday rehearsal times to present vocal techniques, performance skills and music learning. During rehearsal we will use our time to provide feedback and encouragement to help our singers grow and benefit from music. Practice recordings will be provided so that singers will be able to make music on their own throughout the week between rehearsals. Our accompanists will continue to be collaborative partners and key artists in our rehearsals and practice recordings.

We are eager to return to live music making; however, none of us can predict or guarantee precisely when we can safely gather to rehearse in person or present a live concert performance. Throughout the upcoming season, we will respond to state orders about COVID progress and do everything possible to prepare for the return to live instruction as soon as is feasible in 2021. Our hope is that by the end of the 2020-21 season we will be able to gather singers for in-person performance that may be live streamed or presented in an outdoor venue. Should we be able to do so, we will do everything in our power to allow for that celebration, while employing safe practices for everyone. Should that not be possible, we will reframe the second part of the season in a format to allow our choirs to create a live stream type concert to share with our virtual audience. We want to assure AAYC children and families that we will discover the road ahead together and are excited about providing a compelling and beneficial experience for our choristers in this unprecedented time.

Sincerely,
The Ann Arbor Youth Chorale Board and Staff

Important information about AAYC’s upcoming virtual rehearsals

When will AAYC be rehearsing in the fall?
Fall rehearsals will be held via Zoom.  All singers will attend the Zoom meeting as if we are meeting in person.

  • Our first rehearsal will be on Tuesday, September 15, 2020.
  • Descant Choir rehearsals will be held Tuesdays from 6:00 p.m. until  7:00 p.m.
  • Concert Choir rehearsals will be held Tuesdays from 6:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m.
  • The link for your chorister’s Zoom rehearsal will be sent in a separate communication.

What about Workshop Day this year?

  • Given that we are not able to gather in-person at this time, we will not hold Workshop Day as we would in a typical year.
  • Please watch for information in upcoming newsletters about a virtual Parent Orientation meeting in the near future.

What items will be required for a virtual Zoom rehearsal?
The following items will be necessary for each singer to participate in the virtual rehearsals:

  • Private, quiet, distraction- and interruption-free location
  • Earbuds or headphones
  • Device with Zoom software installed (laptop, desktop, tablet, or smartphone)
  • Reliable internet connection
  • External microphone (for recording only): AAYC will make recommendations for affordable microphone solutions later in the season.

How may parents and guardians be supportive of their chorister?

  • Please help your singer locate a quiet space to practice with online recordings each day and to focus during the virtual rehearsal sessions. It is hugely helpful if the space is consistent from week to week.
  • Offer the supportive expectation that quality practice and active engagement in virtual rehearsals are important parts of a young musician’s journey.  Treat the virtual rehearsal with the same importance as any in-person rehearsal.
  • Allow mistakes to occur during practice or rehearsal without commentary or judgement.
  • Encourage your child to work through mistakes and support them in working toward artistry.

What about uniforms this season?

  • For the 2020-2021 season, AAYC will not wear their formal uniforms.
  • When recording for virtual or live-stream performances, singers will wear
    • A red AAYC logo tee (which will be issued to you early in the  season)
    • Black pants (no leggings please)
    • Unadorned, black, closed-toe, flat shoes.

What if we have additional questions or need assistance with setting up Zoom for the rehearsals?

Job Announcement – AAYC Administrator

JOB ANNOUNCEMENT

Administrator for Ann Arbor Youth Chorale

The Ann Arbor Youth Chorale (AAYC) seeks an administrator to manage all AAYC functions including, but not limited to: office administration, finance and equipment management, public relations, and administrative duties as assigned.

About the Ann Arbor Youth Chorale:

The Ann Arbor Youth Chorale is a non-profit organization whose mission is to transform young lives and enhance the cultural life of Southeast Michigan through music education, performance of quality choral music, and collaboration at the highest level of artistic expression– all in a safe, inclusive environment. AAYC consists of two choirs, Descant Choir and Concert Choir, which present concerts during the school year, including with the Detroit, Ann Arbor and Flint Symphony Orchestras, and University of Michigan’s School of Music, Theatre & Dance.

Essential Functions of the Administrator:

  • Manage office located in the NEW Center Building in Ann Arbor
  • Report to AAYC Board President and Board of Directors
  • Serve as chief liaison between the parents, board, and conductors of AAYC
  • Work closely with the board and board committees to advise, prioritize, communicate, and ensure all projects are on track
  • Attend monthly board meetings and provide written reports of administrative activity
  • Be responsible for all bookkeeping and record keeping, including payroll and tax filing with CPA
  • Manage and coordinate all concerts, workshops, and other special events
  • Assist with annual fund solicitation and fundraising events
  • Must be available to attend and assist with weekly rehearsals and dress rehearsals
  • Coordinate parent volunteers for events
  • Revise/update (with Board input) all AAYC registration documents
  • Publish a weekly newsletter from Sept-May (primary correspondence with membership)
  • Organize and schedule annual auditions
  • Facilitate uniform distribution, collection, cleaning, and storage
  • Maintain the music library

Qualifications:

Bachelor’s degree or equivalent work experience. Knowledge of Quickbooks, Microsoft Publisher, Microsoft Office (Word, Excel) and Google office products (Drive, Forms, Sheets) desired.Excellent verbal and written communication skills required. Demonstrate ability to work independently as well as collaboratively with others, manage multiple priorities, and work effectively with individuals from diverse communities. Grant-writing experience desired. Candidate must be a detail-oriented, organized self-starter who takes initiative and follows through.

Salary:

This is a part-time position with an annual salary of $21,000.  Hours are varied and flexible in relation to programmatic and seasonal needs.

Inquiries:

To apply please email cover letter, resume, contact information, three references, and other pertinent materials on or before July 3, 2020 to:

Search Committee, aaycadmin@annarboryouthchorale.org, Ann Arbor Youth Chorale, NEW Center, 1100 N. Main Street, Suite 111, Ann Arbor, MI 48104

For more information about AAYC, visit our website at www.annarboryouthchorale.org. Find us on Facebook and YouTube!

As our nation reels, first from a pandemic and now from the horrors of recent police brutality and racism, we feel it’s important for us all to remember that the arts are more important to our culture now than ever. They reflect current events and help us heal from them. They provide much-needed humanity, beauty and an escape from fear. Or as Robert L. Lynch, President of Americans for the Arts, said, “The arts empower. The arts give a voice to the voiceless. The arts help transform American communities, and the result can be a better child, a better town, a better nation and certainly a better world.”

The Ann Arbor Youth Chorale stands committed to learning, listening, and growing as an organization and continuing to provide young singers with a safe, diverse, and caring environment. Together we can tear down the walls that separate us and build bridges of goodwill, love, and friendship.

Auditions for 2020-21 season on August 8

AAYC is scheduling auditions for their 2020-21 season! Know someone (age 9-16) who loves to sing and is interested in trying out for our 34th season? They’ll LOVE Ann Arbor Youth Chorale!

We are now scheduling auditions for Saturday, August 8, 2020Tryouts are virtual and are by appointment only. Go to the Auditions drop down to request a date/time and to find all the information you need.