The EMU Choral Meet-Up: Three cities, three choirs, one web

31.01.2021 | cb — No comments
The EMU Edinburgh Munich Ukraine Three Cities Choral Meet-Up feat. Stas Mishchenko

You’d like to sing, but your choir can’t meet up to rehearse? You want to meet people from other countries, but you’re not allowed to travel? Then we have the solution for you: our international Three Cities Online Choral Meet-Up with singers from Edinburgh, Munich, Kyiv and beyond. 

We’ll meet up on three Sundays via Zoom, and together we’ll learn three songs in the three languages English, German and Ukrainian. Participation is free, it only costs a couple of hours of your time.

When will we rehearse?

Three Sunday afternoons, on 14 February, 14 March and 11 April from 3pm to 5.30pm including a break with the opportunity to chat afterwards.

Where will we rehearse?

On Zoom at home, on the couch, at your desk, or with friends from your choir, if the lockdown rules allow you to meet.

Who can take part?

All LGBTIQ* singers and allies/friends, whether they already sing in a choir or not.

How can I join in?

Here’s the link to the registration form. After you’ve signed up, we’ll send you a Zoom link for each rehearsal.

The EMU is the Meetup’s mascot after the first letters of Edinburgh, Munich and Ukraine. An EMU like this can certainly sing beautifully. Graphics: Stanislav Mishchenko

What will we sing?

Three songs that are easy to learn and have a connection to the LGBTIQ* community, one song each in English, German and Ukrainian.

Who’s organising the project?

Samantha Seymour and Stephanie Hügler from Munich Kyiv Queer in Munich, together with the musical directors of  the Regenbogenchor in Munich, Loud & Proud in Edinburgh and Qwerty Queer in Odesa.

Who will lead the rehearsals?

Three experienced choral conductors from Bavaria, Scotland and Ukraine: Mary Ellen Kitchens in Munich, Kathleen Cronie in Edinburgh and Olga Rubtsova in Odesa.

In which language are the rehearsals?

We’ll rehearse in English. There will be a translator for the Ukrainian singers (if required).

What equipment do I need?

You need a notebook, tablet or mobile with a stable internet connection. Use a LAN cable if possible. For better sound quality, use an external headset with a microphone, if you have one.  We’ll send you a link to the Zoom meeting – the software is free and easy to use. We’ll be online 15 minutes before the start of the rehearsal to help you log in and set up your audio.

More EMU? Then join the Three City Sports Challenge! This way you can keep moving and get through the lockdown in good health. More here

How are the rehearsals structured?

We’ll rehearse for an hour with one musical director, take a short break, and then rehearse for another hour with another conductor. After the rehearsal we’ll use breakout rooms to have a chat and get to know each other. 

What if I don’t have time for all the rehearsals?

That’s fine – join in when you can! 

How can we sing together on Zoom?

Because of the latency (delay), it’s not possible for everyone to sing together the way we would at a live rehearsal.  But it’s still possible to learn new songs, because the conductor can sing or play your vocal line. We also use rehearsal tracks so that you can hear all the harmonies while you sing along.

I haven’t sung for a long time – can I still take part?

Don’t worry, all the singers are usually muted on Zoom, so nobody will be listening to you anyway ;). It’s more about taking part and enjoying yourself than having the perfect singing voice.

I can’t read music – how can I learn the songs?

Our musical directors will sing or play each vocal line slowly until everyone has learnt it. 

There’ll be a practice track for each song that you can listen to before the rehearsal, and use to practice afterwards. 

How can I learn the lyrics in a forieng language?

During the rehearsals, our conductors will guide you through the pronunciation. Our native speakers have made recordings of the lyrics, spoken very slowly, that you can use to prepare and practice. 

Does the project have a goal?

Having fun and meeting new people! Apart from that, after the rehearsal period we’ll invite you to make a video of one of our songs. We’ll edit all our videos together to create a virtual performance that we can show at the Pride festivals in our three cities this summer. Of course, participation is voluntary.

Why have we chosen to do an international project?

The Various Voices Festivals have shown us time and again how much fun it is to meet up with singers from other countries. We hope to create connections that will remain after the project has finished, and maybe we could all meet up and sing together someday.  

We hope to give the LGBTIQ* singers in Ukraine the sense of an international community that supports each other through difficult times.  And of course singing is fun and good for you!

When: 14 February, 14 March, 11 April, 3 p.m. to 5.30 p.m.
Organised by: Münchner Regenbogenchor, Loud & Proud, Edinburgh, Qwerty Queer, Odesa, CSD Munich, Munich Kyiv Queer, Cultural Department of the City of Munich

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