The Yallourn Madrigal Singers
TYMS is a traditional choir. We sing songs from a very wide period: 16th century to now.
As with most performers we struggle a bit with live performances. While we perform some songs that can be sung with by our audience, most you can't, as they are of a rather technical nature. In times gone by, choirs were listened to and were expected to be not uninterrupted, but respected. These days with the audiences attention span quite short, it's an effort to complete a show without the audience losing interest, as they are not involved.
TYMS has a fairly simple schedule based on a six month interval:
1. Spend five months rehearsing.
2. Spend a week, maybe two performing what we've rehearsed.
The first six months of the year the material is fairly non-religious. This year we foccussed on the centenary of the end of the First World War.
The second six months, of course, is for the Christmas season, where we perform traditional Christmas songs old and new.
As one of our co-conductors told me "It's about the journey, not about the end!" In a sense we are pleasing ourselves.
The average age of our audiences must be seventy plus. The choir is what they grew up with and they still support it. Younger people don't even go to church and are practically unreachable.
I'm glad to be a part of TYMS for a couple of reasons:
1. It's not loud and is acoustic.
2. It's technical.
a - The tempo varies.
b - The volume varies.
c - The words for the songs don't have to be in English. They could be Latin, French, German, etc. Sometimes more than one in a song.
d - You need to follow the conductor. The music ebbs and flows.
Clearly this is nothing like being in a function band where the emphasis is to be loud(er), keep a reasonably fixed tempo and not too much variation in the overall level. TYMS are far more interesting.
I'm enjoying myself and that's the name of the game.
Hope to keep this up for the forseeable future.