summer choir

What to Sing with Your Summer Choir

What to Sing with Your Summer Choir

So, you’ve decided to have a summer choir. 😊

You’ve invited your current choir members and put the word out to others in the congregation who might be interested. Now, it’s time to figure out what you’re going to sing each week.

Depending on how you structure your summer choir, you may have a general sense of how many people you’ll have each week (and how many parts you’ll have covered). But, if you’re leaving it more open and letting people show up without RSVPing ahead of time, choosing music can be a bit more complicated.

Related post: Three Ways to Have a Summer Choir (+ How to Make the Most of Your Time Together)

You need anthems that are:

  • singable and intuitive

  • written in an accessible way

  • easy to learn

Three Ways to Have a Summer Choir (+ How to Make the Most of Your Time Together)

Three Ways to Have a Summer Choir (+ How to Make the Most of Your Time Together)

It’s that time of the year: The days are getting longer, the grass is growing taller, and we can (finally) leave the house without putting on a coat - summer is almost here!

As people are wrapping up their school-year commitments and making plans for those lazy, hazy days of summer, now is the perfect time to start organizing a summer choir at your church.

Now, I know what you’re thinking:

“That’s not in my contract!”
"We all deserve a little break, don’t you think?”
"No one would come if we had rehearsals in the summer.”

I get it. Summer choirs may work really well in some churches and not-so-well in others.

The good news is, there’s not a one-size-fits-all model.

12 Easy Anthems for Your Summer Choir

12 Easy Anthems for Your Summer Choir

Summer is almost here! Time for watermelon and slow evenings on the patio, travel adventures and long, early morning walks, a slower pace and simpler Sunday morning services (we hope!).

For many of us, summer means a break from choir rehearsals; but that doesn’t mean they can’t sing during the summer months!

Spend your last rehearsal of the year prepping a few easy anthems to do throughout the summer, then meet for 30 minutes before each service to review parts and get warmed up. Do a pick-up choir once or twice a month, or put together an ensemble one week.

This is a great way to keep people connected during the summer months and a wonderful way for new people from your congregation to see what choir is like without making a year-long commitment.

Related post: The Case for the Summer Choir

I usually try to stick with anthems that are easy and accessible - not too challenging melodically or rhythmically and without a lot of divisi. You may even look at unison/2-part or SAB anthems. If you have a few capable singers that are available to sing one Sunday, pull an SSA or TTB piece and put together a ladies’ or mens’ trio. The possibilities are endless!

Looking for a few suggestions? Here are 12 of my favorite anthems for summer (in no particular order):

The Case for the Summer Choir

The Case for the Summer Choir

The summer choir. It's a hot topic among church choir directors everywhere. To sing or not to sing? To have "special music" all summer or no anthem at all?

Some directors feel strongly about giving their choir time off so they'll come back refreshed and renewed and ready to get to work in the fall. Others are worried people won't come back after an extended break.

Some directors feel that the choir sets an example for the rest of the church and by not participating (and likely attending), others in the church may follow suit. Others enjoy the slower pace of summer services and a short break from the weekly choir routine.

This is a not a right-or-wrong, good-or-bad kind of decision. In fact, I'll admit that the summer choir may not work and may not be what's best for certain churches. But for those of you who are on the fence about it and those who are considering adding a summer choir this year, here are a few of the benefits I've seen: