Welcome


Welcome to Renate's Baton. This blog is mostly for and about my choir, The York Region Community Choir.

But, While I'm holding the baton, I'm in charge. So, if I want to talk about other parts of my life, I will. :)

The choir itself is a community and I'm discovering that we have a lot in common with one another besides our love of music and singing.

When I go off on a tangent, there is always a crowd coming along. Join us!

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

YRCC Rehearsal 18-Sep-2017

Another fun, energy-filled rehearsal!

Warm-ups:
We started off with a short physical warm-up and then tried out our new interval exercises. They're meant to help with our sight-reading. If you missed this rehearsal, you'll need to get the hand-out next time.
1. In Our Town in December. Sweet, multicultural holiday song (mostly Christmas). There are 2 storyteller solos. Bill is going to do the first one (Carol back-up) and Trix will do the second at 24 (Lauren back-up). The choir sings at 13 and 32. Alto, Tenor, Bass are all on Part II. We will not do this on October 15. It'll wait for December.

2. Hine Ma Tov: Bilingual, Hebrew and English. We need someone to sing the first solo in Hebrew, also in a storytelling style, and another to sing the second verse in English, clearly translating the first. Think about it, and let me know if you're interested. This song is for October 15 and December 3rd, and for next Spring (Unity/Peace theme). We have Alto, Tenor, Bass all on Part II. We only sang the melody line this week.

3. Noel Nouvelet: French. Like on Hine Ma Tov, there is a guide to the pronunciation. I disagree with a couple things. Take note: chantons ici = shã-tõ-zee-see, gens=zhã, crions=kree-yõ, l'ange disait= lã-zheh-dee-zay... there are a number of other places where there are nasalized vowels and the letter n simply indicated this but is not pronounced. I'll point them out as we sing. Remember to have your pencils handy to mark your music (never pen!). I have lots of pencils in case you forget yours. We have 2 parts in this song as well, and Alto, Tenor, and Bass are down on part II. It's a really cool part! And, there's a beautiful flute part. I'm so happy that Robin is back! It was fun having Joy's friends play flute with us, but this is more comfortable. Altos, if you have trouble with the high notes, there are a couple of things you can do. 1. just don't sing them, those who can will probably need to sing them louder than usual and we won't notice your voice missing, but be sure to pretend to sing them. 2. sing with the tenors, and skip the lowest notes in the same way. 3. do vocal exercises every day to increase your range. This song is for December 3rd only, not for October 15.

4. Song for Canada: Bilingual French and English! There's a short flute part for Robin in the last verse, the O Canada descant. This is ready to perform. Altos, the last verse is a bit high. Same 3 choices as above apply to dealing with the high notes. Everyone, don't stress about the ahs at the end. I like lots of harmony there. The tenor/bass section (men) have added ahs starting at the French verse which I like, but the women in that section are singing the melody an octave down. It would be good if a few altos could join them in that lower octave. October 15, for sure, and Dec. 3.

5. I Will Always be With You: We have to be careful not to sing this too slowly or too loudly. It's sweet and pretty. Be sure to enunciate well so that the words can be understood. They're lovely. The flute is gorgeous and must also be sweet and not too loud. I don't like the ending, so we'll probably add something there. We will sing this on October 15, but probably not on December 3.

Tickets are on sale for October 15th. 
Tickets at the door will be $30.  
In advance, they're $25, with $20 for seniors and students.
In advance there's a family discount $50 for 4. 

There will be a number of songs only sung at the October concert, but not at the December concert. If you want your family to hear them, then you'll want to get tickets. On Eagle's Wings, You Raise Me Up, I Will Always Be With You, Go Now in Peace, as well as a few solos and small groups (Janet and Kevin, Todd, Trix, etc) are just for Enid. I'll have the order set soon. 

Next week: 25-Sept-2017
Small group: Barenaked Ladies starts at 6:30!
Hine Ma Tov
Noel Nouvelet
Somewhere a Child is Sleeping
You Raise Me Up
You'll Never Walk Alone



Wednesday, September 13, 2017

YRCC Rehearsal Review 11-SEP-2017

We're back! 
This is the first rehearsal review of the 2017-2018 season!

This Fall/Winter season is different from others because we have a concert to perform on October 15th, a fundraiser for our friends at St. Andrew's in Aurora who allow us to use their church to rehearse when we cannot have our room at the Admin Centre. We're going to sing some of our past songs especially for Enid. Thank you to those of you who have already signed up for the concert on the website. If you haven't yet, log in on the website and sign up for this "event". 

To start the rehearsal, we did some of our usual warm-ups. Some are physical, to release tension and to raise awareness of the musical instrument that is our whole body, not just the mouth. Sometimes our vocal exercises are also an introduction to following the conductor and working together as a choir. 

1. Wonderful World is one of our top 10 YRCC hits. It's awesome, and it's already performance-ready. Gorgeous.
2. Song for Canada was also super. Front row tenors sing an octave down, coming in at verse 2. The rest of the tenors and basses come in on the second verse with ahs. Very cool. Altos can choose to sing down an octave with the tenors, especially on the third verse after the key change. We will have Robin on flute. She has also sung that descant line before. Should be great! 
3. On Eagle's Wings is probably Enid's favourite YRCC hit. It's a powerful version of a church hymn, full of drama and movement. The ending! If you haven't sung this with us before, please log in to our website and listen to your part and listen to this YouTube video of us.
4. You'll Never Walk Alone is my favourite YRCC hit. It's also based on a hymn and very powerful. It's got a jazzy gospel element which I love. Again, if you're new, you'll want to do some homework. Log in to the website to hear your part. Here's a link to a YouTube video.
5. Hockey Song is still in good form. It's a perfect song for Canada's 150th and winter! The audience will appreciate this rousing, up-tempo piece. 
6. I Will Always Be With You is a sweet and touching piece that is also pretty much ready to go. It will feature Robin on flute. Here we are on YouTube.

Coming up next week: Christmas already.
1. In Our Town in December
2. Noel Nouvelet
3. Hine Ma Tov
4. Song for Canada
5. I Will Always Be With You
I will hand out music for small group: God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen/We 3 Kings
Please sign up to participate in this small group song. 




Monday, August 28, 2017

YRCC Winter 2017 Start is 11-SEP-2017

Today is the second last Monday without choir.
I've been missing you all, but I'm working on choir today and thinking about you, because it's Monday :-)
Next Monday, Labour Day, will be the last Monday before we get started.
Monday, September 11th is our first day back! Yay!

Joy and I are working on the music, and the Executive is getting ready to register everyone and make sure all is set for our new season.

You should get an email asking you to pre-register soon so that we can quickly have everyone pay their dues so we can get singing right away!

We have a busy schedule this season because we're singing a concert on October 15!
Be sure to sign up for that so that I don't panic. We need lots of you there so that we can do our 4-part pieces. If you're not familiar with some of the titles, please go to the recordings page on the website and download them to start learning them on your own. Even if you kind of remember them, you might want to brush up on your own. We won't have a lot of time on Monday nights to review them.

I'm looking forward to our wonderful new season. We've got lots of great music to sing, as always.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

YRCC 2017/2018 Choir Leadership Team

Introducing 
the Executive of the York Region Community Choir 
for the 2017/2018 Choir Year:

The Executive works together with the Director and Accompanist, and the Reading Committee, to choose music, decide when and where we sing, and make sure people are there to sing and to hear us sing, and take care of our equipment, finances, website and music library. The Executive is elected and the Reading Committee, Conductor and Accompanist are appointed. The Executive is now officially called the Board of Directors since we are incorporated, but we can still use the name Executive, I think. 

Our President is Lauren Solar (laurensolar@gmail.com). This is Lauren's fifth year as President. Lauren is responsible for everything happening. 

Our Vice-President is Jane Griffiths (jane.griffiths@rogers.com). Jane's role is to help Lauren and anyone else on the executive when they need a hand. She's a fundraising superhero.  

Daphne Young (youngdc@rogers.com) is our Public Relations ChairIf you need to contact us regarding advertising, or to book us for a concert, or just need some information, contact Daphne. The PR role is to keep us connected to the community. 

Karen Andrews (karenc.andrews@sympatico.ca) is our Secretary/Treasurer.
If you want to write us a cheque, make it out to York Region Community Choir, and Karen will put it in our account. We accept cash too. Karen will keep our paperwork in order, creating and maintaining records like the minutes of our meetings and accounting stuff. Michele Horton supports Karen and will continue to represent us when we share condolences and congratulations. 

Trix Verge (trix.verge@gmail.com) is our Webmaster and former Music Librarian. She had our music collection in her basement for years and her organizational skills and patient dedication served us well in our greatest period of growth. Trix is the one to go to for help using the website, and she makes sure that it's functioning properly. Trix has magical computer skills, and could probably herd cats.

Lyn Gadd (maralynr@rogers.com)  recently took over the Music Librarian role but may have to ask someone to take over. She has several filing cabinets full of music in her basement now, along with tables and a printer, and she makes sure we all have music to sing every Monday, and has extra binders made up for guests, or people who are checking us out. If you have a binder of music that belongs to us and want to know how to get it back to us, contact Lyn! If you have space and can store our library, please let someone on the executive know!

Carol Ford and Debbie Hood are the Registrars. They make sure the membership list is up-to-date and coordinate registration in September. They will be calling you if you're on the waiting list. Debbie had our coffee (and tea) equipment and supplies in her basement for many years, and together with Carol took care of our refreshment needs, but Sophie is going to have a turn in that position this year.

Teija Cumming and Anne Marie Vandekemp are the Reading Committee. They help choose new music and order it from the publishers, shopping in person and on line. They are chosen for their ability to read music and knowledge of our strengths and weaknesses. 

Renate Naghavi (That's me.) is the Conductor/Musical Director of the YRCC. The Conductor chooses a theme and selects music for each season, with the help of the Executive and the Reading Committee, and with input from the Accompanist. The Conductor teaches the music with the help of the Accompanist, and leads the choir in performances. 

Anne Marie Vandekemp has been the Assistant Director, officially and unofficially for at least a decade. Since she is one of the original members of the choir, Anne Marie is consulted on everything from music to venues and managing member politics. Anne Marie leads the small group rehearsals. 

Joy Zhang is our Accompanist. She is a talented pianist who helps Renate teach the music and accompanies the choir in rehearsal and in performances. 

Monday, August 7, 2017

YRCC St. Andrew's Fundraiser Concert October 15th

Mark your calendars and start rehearsing!

St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church (click for map)
Sunday, October 15th 
2:00-4:00
(12:30 arrival for rehearsal)

We will be performing a concert for St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church as a fundraiser to thank them for providing rehearsal space for us whenever we are bumped out of our free space at the Admin Centre.

Members, please sign up for this event on our website. (click to follow link- you'll need to log in)
I do hope everyone can come!

Sunday, July 23, 2017

YRCC could we do Bohemian Rhapsody?

This video was brought to my attention (shared on Facebook), and some choristers are saying we should do this. What do you think? It would take some work, but we would feel great. We wouldn't have to shake our heads. It's too big a song for a small group, I think.
Whether or not we decide to sing this, take a look at this video of a choral Bohemian Rhapsody.


Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Free Outdoor Concerts in Newmarket Summer 2017

'Tis the season! It's outdoor concert season!
Christmas isn't the only singing season, Choristers!
This summer, be sure to sing and dance to live music whenever you can. There are plenty of opportunities here in Newmarket!
Starting tomorrow, with our very own Carrot Sticks, there are 2 free concerts every week!
Read about it here. 
You can bring your lawn chair or you can choose to stand so you can move to the music.


I love the Carrot Sticks!





Saturday, June 24, 2017

Get your tickets for the Newmarket Music Festival 2017!

Formerly the Newmarket Jazz + Festival, The Newmarket Music Festival takes place at Riverwalk Commons again this year, and it's not on the August long weekend as in the past but on August 25, 26, and 27.

For three days of live music, the tickets right now are only $25 per person. I've got tickets for my family. Even if we only go for a few hours it will be worth it, but we will be there for most of the weekend, I'm sure.

There's something very special about a live outdoor concert, a wonderful feeling of celebration and community. I highly recommend this!

Buy your tickets here before July 3 for the "early bird" price. After that they're still cheap at twice as much.


There is also an opportunity to volunteer at the festival. My girls and I have done that before and it's fun and you get to be there for free.


Sunday, May 7, 2017

YRCC Spring 2017 Seniors Tour

O Canada- 2 verses 
Four Strong Winds/ Hallelujah
Song for the Mira/ Where the Coho Flash Silver
Love Theme from St. Elmo’s Fire/ V’la l’bon vent
Both Sides Now/ Don’t Go/ This Island Earth
Hockey Song/ All the Little Rivers
7 Ca-na-da
Sing-alongs
They All Call it Canada/ Song for Canada

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

YRCC Canadian Pop Songs audience participation medley

So, we didn't get a chance to go through this on Monday, but here are some links to the songs I'm planning to do. We're just doing bits of each, and you'll have the words. 
Don't stress over it. It's meant to be fun. 


1.       Put Your Head On My Shoulder  by Paul Anka (1959)

2.       Snowbird by Gene MacLellan  (Anne Murray 1969)

3.       If You Could Read My Mind by Gordon Lightfoot (1971)

4.       Closer to the Heart  by Geddy Lee of Rush (1977)

5.       Up Where We Belong by Buffy Sainte-Marie et al (Joe Cocker 1982)

6.       Everything I Do I Do it For You  by Bryan Adams (1991)

7.    Everything by Michael Bublé (2007)


8.       Call Me Maybe by Carly Rae Jepsen -2012

YRCC Rehearsal 24-APR-2017 last one before dress rehearsal

This Island Earth, V'la l'bon vent, and St. Elmo's Fire met early, and all was well.
Mary-Ellen, Stanley, and Trix and Rob had time with Joy to rehearse.
Echo Beach met at break with Kevin and Jeannie.

Song for Canada is beautiful with Jeannie an octave up on her flute descant. Basses are awesome on ahhs! It's not what I planned, but I like it.
Song for the Mira is also so much more beautiful with Jeannie playing flute. Thank you, Jeannie! (and thanks to Joy, too for finding Jeannie for us)
Where the Coho Flash Silver now has a solid ending! We reviewed and polished and now it's good and strong.
Unity is pretty and uplifting. Remember to keep it light and positive. Sopranos and altos only on the first page the first time. Only first sopranos in the verse until the Love thy neighbour part. Bass on tenor for the verse.
We didn't have time to go through the pop song medley!
I'll post links to the songs. I hope I chose well-known songs.
If you're feeling a bit behind on anything, remember there are recordings on our website to help you.

Next week: Dress Rehearsal-really! We're wearing our formal white and black to take an official picture. If you like, you can bring a change of clothes for the rest of the rehearsal. Don't forget black shoes and hose. Black to the floor. If you want to wear a skirt, it must be floor-length. Long pants to the floor. Long sleeves to the wrist.

6:00 start: solos, small groups until 7:00 for sound checks, where to stand.

7:00 everyone arrives. 7:15 picture and warm-up.

7:30 run-through. have your binders in order. The concert order is posted on the website (members only: Spring concert order).

Sunday, April 23, 2017

YRCC Canadian sing-along songs on YouTube

Thank you to Ellen, who found our sing-along songs on YouTube and sent these links!


https://www.youtube.com/watch? v=upsZZ2s3xv8  ( The Log Driver's Waltz- iconic film)

https://www.youtube.com/watch? v=WSjMuKh1Wpo  ( This Land is Our Land) 

https://www.youtube.com/watch? v=JstZIsrGlP8  ( Give Us a Place ...Ontario)

https://www.youtube.com/watch? v=BN_mZgSt5k0 ( Land of the Silver Birch- we're singing boom-boom) 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G9m4g8H4f4Q  ( O Siem)       

Thursday, April 20, 2017

YRCC Rehearsal Review 17-APR-2017

Sorry, I missed rehearsal on the 10th. We had a family emergency.
Thank you to Joy and Lauren and Anne-Marie for leading and making sure "the show went on"!

Echo Beach met early with our new flute player, Jeannie. Anne-Marie led you in Song for Canada and Song for the Mira with Jeannie, and apparently timing was an issue. We'll work on that next Monday when Jeannie is back. Four Strong Winds and Where the Coho Flash Silver are getting good, as is Unity.

On April 17th, St. Elmo's Fire was the early group. We did well, even without Joy, who got her days mixed up on the long weekend. I'm so glad it happens to young people too.

1. We started with a test run of my "traditional Canadian songs" medley. It was not bad, but I thought you'd know all the songs I know. You'll have the words, but the audience won't, so I have to work out how to manage this thing. It might mean we do fewer songs, but repeat the chorus twice.

2. Four Strong Winds. We worked on the musicality. Dynamics and tempo are getting good. We had to review the Tenor and Bass part B. Please look at this  Tenors and Basses! It's hard to correct something this late in the game, but you're all here now, and you've got to become a team and sing together. We'll keep on top of it.

3. All the Little Rivers. Getting the middle of the first page good and loud was a challenge. Try to remember that part so you can be strong there. Remember to anticipate the fortissimo at the top of page 7 so that you come in super-strong.

4. Unity. Page 2 we had to take the second sopranos off of the verse from "Sometimes/ Through respect", and add the basses to the tenor part there for balance. First sopranos are alone on the soprano part until "Love thy neighbour/ No race", which is strong, so everyone can sing their parts.

5. Where the Coho Flash Silver. I love Blair's solo there! Daphne seems well-suited to her part as well. We'll hear her better with a microphone, don't worry.

Next week: 24-Apr-2017

Early groups: 6:30 This Island Earth
                       6:50 V'la l'bon vent
                       7:10 St. Elmo's Fire


  • Song for Canada with Jeannie
  • Song for the Mira with Jeannie
  • They All Call it Canada
  • Unity
  • Where the Coho
  • Four Strong Winds
  • Pop Medley?


Wednesday, April 5, 2017

YRCC Rehearsal Review 03-APR-2017

Monday, April 3rd. Wow! It's April already!!!

Roxanne sent a nice sample email that you can copy and paste to send to all of your friends and family. I've sent mine :-) Offer to pick up tickets in advance for them. They can pay you back at Easter :-) Or, you can have tickets set aside for them to pay at the door. Get them booked now, so they don't make plans for our weekend! May 6th is not far away.

We had a really nice coffee break with sweet and savoury treats. It was great to hear the noise of happy conversations. It's good to be able to relax and chat for a change, when I've got you working so hard all the time. Thank you to the volunteers who brought delicious delicacies.

6:30 V'la b'bon vent:  Rob had his clogging shoes on! It's so cool! We need to support Rob and Joanne (spoons) with more energy to in our singing. At the end, we don't slow down, maintaining the energy and tempo, and we're nice and loud, then give Rob and Joanne a bit of a last hurrah before our last bar.

1. O Canada We talked about whether Altos, Tenors, and Basses should memorize their parts or write the words of the other 2 verses into their music. It's up to individuals. Whatever makes it easier for you. I absolutely love the pines and maples verse!

2. Ca-na-da This song is fun and not serious, so relax and have fun! There are a ton of words for the Sopranos to fit in, but don't stress about it. Do practise, though. Say the words a few times getting faster each time. I was hearing Sopranos saying province and territories in the French verses. Remember that provinces comes out something like pro-van-sa and territoires is kind of like terra-twar. We decided to ignore the two beats on Notre (first bar at bottom of second page) and sing NOooootr instead of no-traaaaaa.

3.Where the Coho Flash Silver It's getting very good! We sang all the way through and went over bits we had trouble with. The a cappella part to the end was reviewed for all parts. If you missed it, try to listen to the recording to review your ending. Endings are important. We also worked on the transition between part B and part C at the bottom of page 4. We need to listen for the piano accompaniment to know when and how to come in at the key change. There's a little "la-la-la-la pa-pa oom-pa-pa" and we sing 'Well the' on the second pa-pa. Listen for that low note.

4. Unity This is getting very good. Page 2 is really cool. I'm worried that the tenors are not loud enough on their bit of the melody. We have to fix it. My first thought was to have the basses join, but the basses have a really cool part there. Not sure what the answer is. I'll figure it out. We had to work on page 3. We are in unison, so we have to sing the same thing. This is also on the website. Listen to it if you can find some time.

5. We only sang Four Strong Winds once through, but it's still stuck in my head! I love this song. We got the doo-doos! All the stuff we worked on last week went well. I'm happy. We need to review the tenor and bass part at B. First of all, "Think I'll" is fast on beat 4 not 3 and 4, "fall" is only 2 beats, so "I got some" takes 2 beats not one. Same with "go to working". It's part of the "full warm sound" that is indicated in this section. The rhythm is a bit different. Take a look please, tenors and basses!
Second Sopranos: at the end, from 98 to the end, you have the melody. Enjoy it! You're forte until 'back this way'.

Next week: Monday, April 10

6:30 Echo Beach with flute

1. Song for Canada (flute)
2. Song for the Mira (flute)
3. Four Strong Winds
4. Where the Coho Flash Silver
5. Unity



Wednesday, March 29, 2017

YRCC Rehearsal Review 27-MAR-2017

Monday, March 27th

Remember that tickets are for sale for our concert. Roxanne is selling them at break. Next week, we will have coffee and treats at break too (oops. we forgot to ask for treats)

Remember to sign up for Sing! Sing! and Sing some more! April 29th all-day choir event.
Sign up on our website so that we can determine whether we can offer a YRCC performance for the concert at the end. Right now there are only 4 of us signed up. You have to register for the event on the Georgina website and pay your fee there too.

6:30 Rob and Trix: OMG I love this song! You two are wonderful for sharing this with us!
7:00 Melinda's group: now includes Rob. Thanks, Rob, for joining us on this island.

1. Warm-up was Hallelujah. What a joy! Washed away our Monday stress. We need to sing it in the concert, so we're going to have to think of a way to make it into a sing-along for the encore. It's fun to try out different soloists during rehearsals. Will you try some time?

2. Song for the Mira gave us opportunities to hear other solo voices, too. We are getting very good at this East Coast song! We reviewed section 5 again. It's hard, but it's awesome.

Kudos to those of you who rose to the challenge when I called on new soloists! You are not only beautiful, but also brave! It's not easy to sing alone when you're used to singing in the choir. It's a different thing. We don't have many willing and able soloists. We hear the same ones again and again for that reason. I think I need to give people more opportunities in rehearsal time even if you're not going to sing a solo in a performance.  What do you think? You can say no when I ask. But, didn't it make you proud for the ones who sang? It felt wonderful to me. Remind me. (Having said that, it sounds strange to say that I still haven't decided on the soloists for that song. I haven't found the right combination of voices, the right chemistry.)

3. Four Strong Winds This has been stuck in my head now for 2 weeks! Luckily, I love this. We looked at the triplets in the tenor part at B. Remember that they take up beats 3 and 4. We need the tenor and bass section to sound like one voice here, so you've got to be together. We also decided on pronouncing Alberta the normal way, with a Canadian flap and not a strong aspirated T. We reviewed the doo-doos to the end and sang the whole thing. It's funny how I'm not so good at so good at quiet endings. I love a big end, or at least a very clear end. This non-ending is stressful for me. I understand the idea of it, but I'm having trouble doing it. I'll keep trying. We all have to try to be wistful at the end.

4. Hockey Song We did this one instead of O Canada. I just wasn't in the mood, somehow. This one is so much fun! Just remember to have fun. It's not too picky a song. Just watch for the weird entries.  Enjoy it and give it a great big goofy Wayne Gretzky!

5. Where the Coho Flash Silver We are pretty good at this West Coast one too, now. We spent some time on the last page. There is still some work to be done, but it's coming along. It's hard work, but worth it.

We're on the home stretch. we should not be looking at anything new, but only reviewing and polishing our performances. (if there's stuff you haven't learned, you can go online to hear your part, but also let me know) We do still have the sing-alongs to learn. I'm working on them, and they should be easy- all unison, all well-known bits of songs, that we have to just know better than the audience, or be better prepared than them, anyway ;-)

Next week: Monday, April 3rd 

6:30 V'la l'bon vent Small Group

  • Ca-na-da
  • O Canada
  • Four Strong Winds
  • Unity
  • Where the Coho









Wednesday, March 22, 2017

6204 Main Street, Stouffville 24/7 music Record Attempt


YRCC Rehearsal 20-MAR-2017

Monday, March 20th, 2017

6:30 Rob and Trix
7:00 Melinda's group

Roxanne had tickets and posters at break time.

Remember to buy as many tickets as you can in advance. It's good to know how big our audience will be. Tickets are priced better in advance. You can buy 2 for $25. At the door, all tickets are $15. Everybody enjoys the student and senior rate ;-)

1. Unity: We reviewed page 2 thoroughly and spent some time on the transitions- from the first to the second verse, from the bottom of page of page 2 to the nest section (we didn't observe the 2 fermatas) and from page 3 to the end. It was pretty good.

2. Where the Coho Flash Silver: We reviewed the a cappella section and the end, pages 7 and 8. It's getting great!

3. They All Call it Canada: We reviewed pages 10 and 11 where the Sopranos and Altos have the descant part and sang from there to the end (going back to "from the Atlantic" and skipping to the coda).

4. Four Strong Winds: We reviewed the middle hard part starting at the doo-doos and sang to the end! We weren't sure we liked the end, but decided that if we slow down starting a bit earlier and get softer and softer that it would satisfy my need to have a clear ending :-)

5. We Rise Again: I was sad to announce that we will not be able to sing We Rise Again this season. We are running behind because we needed work on songs that I thought we knew better. Not to worry; we'll do it again soon. It's a beautiful song and will fit into all kinds of themes.

We do have lots of work to do on the songs that we have. Spend some time working with the recordings, please!

Next Week: Monday, March 27th

Get more tickets for your family and friends! You can take tickets and pay next week, giving you time to get the money from your family. Or, maybe they'll pay you at Easter :-)

  • O Canada
  • Hallelujah
  • Where the Coho
  • Four Strong Winds
  • Song for the Mira



Thursday, March 16, 2017

YRCC Rehearsal Review 13-MAR-2017

It was March Break and it was a crazy-snowy day, but lots of us came and sang and felt wonderful!

6:30 This Island Earth, Melinda's small group

Warm-up were quick and focused on where our breath comes from.

1. All The Little Rivers: getting excellent!

2. Four Strong Winds: we did the hard middle part! It wasn't so bad. The doo-doos were good! The "fancy" verse is cool, and we do get that "going home" feeling when we get to E. This is something to review on your own if you have some time. It's challenging and beautiful.

3. Song for Canada: in wonderful contrast to Four Strong Winds, Song for Canada is straight-up in unison, and the focus is on the words and the fact that we sing in French for the second verse. The end is cool and will include a Flute Descant based on O Canada. The timing is tricky, but you've got it! If you're uncertain, you can listen to the recording online.

4. Unity:we've now learned the whole song. We just need to clean it up, and remember page 2. Don't forget to write in the words for the second verse:

Through respect and dignity (sopranos)
Will come peace and unity (tenors)
No race, religion, skin nor creed (all)
For you are you. And I am me
Together we're we.

Next Monday: Monday, March 20

6:30 Trix and Rob 7:00 Melinda's group

  1. Four Strong Winds review all, focus on middle
  2. Unity review, all focus on pg 2
  3. Where the Coho Flash Silver review middle
  4. Song for the Mira try further pair of soloists to finalize who sings where
  5. They All Call it Canada just page 10-11
  6. We Rise Again? Talk about whether or not we can keep it


Saturday, March 11, 2017

YRCC Spring Concert: Canada: a Land of Harmony, Sat., May 6th


Sing! Sing! And Sing Some Moire! Georgina Choir Event April 29th

SING! SING! AND SING SOME MORE! 2017 Saturday, April 29th 9-5


Register yourself and pay on your own.
Click on the links below to register.

Register on the YRCC website to see if we can offer a YRCC choir song for the concert at the end.


Enjoy a morning of vocal workshops, lunch and an afternoon of singing! 

Click below to sign up for the full day:

$30.00 Full Day 9:00am-5:00pm 

Includes two workshops, group sing-a-long and group choir, lunch and snacks


just come out and Sing! Sing! And Sing Some More! in the afternoon! 
To register for the afternoon only, click here: 

$15.00 Afternoon Only 12:30pm-5:00pm 

Includes Group Sing-a-long and group choir and snack

For more information, please check out their Facebook page (link)

Search Facebook: Sing Sing And Sing Some More (no exclamation marks)
Or email Susan stewartsusan78@yahoo.ca 
or call her at 905-716-2565

AGES 12+
There will be a 4:00 public performance.
Please invite family and friends.

Refreshments will be served.

The event is brought to you by The Town of Georgina
In partnership with The Voices of Georgina

YRCC Rehearsal 6-MAR-2017

Monday, March 6th, 2017

6:30 St. Elmo's Fire- Excellent! We got over the timing issues. It helps that it's in cut time, 2 beats per bar instead of 4. You feel beat 3. You've got to cut off on time, too. It helps to watch me. ;-)

1. They All Call It Canada Wow! It's awesome, but we didn't remember everything at first. Keep looking at this one, please. Especially Sopranos and Altos at the "new" part, pages 10 and 11, that descant part. It's really cool there and makes for a big climax to the song, making our big ending even bigger. Review the ending too, and make sure you're ready for it after the second "from the Atlantic", and remember to cut short the "-tic" on Atlantic and Pacific.

2. Where the Coho Bar 27 seems like a little thing but it's the way that section B connects to section C through the key change. A,B,C, D are all fine. We need to review E. Please look at it on your own. Use the recordings on the website if you need to.

3.Song for the Mira We heard a few different soloists and it was cool! I'm trying to figure out how I want the solos to work, who sings what. We've tried different things at the first "Can you Imagine" and I think I want to go back to what we've always done before, having the whole choir come in soft and in unison. It's a better transition from the ooh part. Also, the last solo should be one person. In the meantime, Tenors and Basses, please review section 5, especially page 10.

4.Unity We learned from bar 24 to the bottom of page 3. Take the second ending only and continue to the end. Yes, we're almost at the end! Such a pretty song, and powerful too.

Next Week:
Monday, March 13th, 2017 March Break Monday.
If you've got plans because the kids are at home, enjoy them! We expect there to be people missing. Those of us who are there will work had and will help you when you're back. If you have some time, listen to the recordings of your parts on the website.

CONCERT TICKETS AND POSTERS ARE NOW AVAILABLE

BUY TICKETS AND POST POSTERS

6:30 This Island Earth- Melinda

  • All the Little Rivers- just sing through
  • Four Strong Winds - middle section
  • Song for Canada- just sing through  
  • Where the Coho- E
  • Unity- ending, review page 2



Wednesday, March 1, 2017

YRCC Rehearsal 27-FEB-2017

Monday, February 27th, 2017

6:30 St. Elmo's Fire Small Group-getting closer. Timing seems to be an issue.

We had a wonderful surprise visit from Enid who sat in the alto section, having a hard time not singing. We can all imagine the frustration she must feel at being told not to sing. Hopefully, her health will improve and she will be able to sing again soon. We wish her all the best!

Joy was at a choir event with her church choir, so she prepared a few recordings for us, and we managed quite well with Anne-Marie at the keyboard and Lauren managing the recordings. We look forward to having Joy back next week! We all have an increased appreciation for our wonderful pianist.

1. All the Little Rivers. Well, I had planned for us to just sing it through. But, the recording was faster than what we're used to, and we did really poorly. It seemed to me that we didn't know our parts as well as I though we did. So, we went over a bunch of stuff, even the second page. I asked the sopranos to come in at bar 12, noting to the altos and sopranos that this beckon me line is different form the first one. We sang through a couple times and it got quite a bit better.

2. Four Strong Winds. We learned section F to the end. At F, we come out of a fancy section and it feels like going home. It's the regular timing and harmonies and the ending is only a little bit big, just so you know it's the end. We sang along with Joy's recording and it went better than I expected. We know the beginning and the end. Next, we have to learn that fancy middle section.

3. Song for the Mira. We learned the oohs at section 2. It says hmm, and we tried it that way, but we've done it before with oohs, and I think we'll do it that way again. We can have the soloists on microphones. These are very pretty oohs. If you missed today's rehearsal, you probably want to listen to the recording of your part to hear how they go. We will review them, but everyone who was there learned them very well. We sounded so pretty! And, Joanne had a go at the solo part along with Blair. I will listen to other possible soloists. I haven't decided on a soloist for this, so consider whether you'd like to try it and let me know. I also haven't quite decided who sings when.


Next week: Monday, March 6th

6:30 St. Elmo's Fire Small Group: I will also come and we'll see what we can do about the timing.

Four Strong Winds- starting at the a cappella part
Song for the Mira- review oohs, sort out solos
They All Call it Canada- once through
Unity- starting at pick up to bar 24
Where the Coho Flash Silver- bar 27 and a cappella

Thank you for supporting me on my CNOY walk!

A very big, heartfelt thank you to Trix, Rob, Robin, Melodie, Lyn, and Ellen for supporting me on my walk! I love my choir! It felt wonderful to have raised close to $500. Soraya, Victoria and I walked with our heads held high among approximately 200 walkers and volunteers. It was cold and windy and there was a stretch of the walk where we were walking with our faces towards the setting sun and into the wind, but it was great.
This year we walked 5 km. Next year, we are thinking of walking 10 km.


Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Support the Newmarket Community: Coldest Night of the Year

CNOY stands for Coldest Night of the Year. 

CNOY is a walk, a fundraising walk which supports programs for homeless people. My daughters and I will participate in the walk this year on February 25th. We are joining a team from our church, Trinity United Church in Newmarket. Walking at night in February gives participants a small taste of what it might be like to live in the streets in the winter. It's meant to be uncomfortable, but we will be walking in teams and will have snacks and a warm home to go to afterwards. We will be reminded of how lucky we are.

To find out more about the Coldest Night of the Year, click here. 


Please sponsor me on my walk! You can donate online here. Just enter my name in the Search box: Renate Naghavi. 


In Newmarket, Inn from the Cold is the recipient of the funds raised. Inn from the Cold started as a shelter for the coldest winter nights only, but has grown to a multi-service centre for people who find themselves homeless or at risk.

You can find out about Newmarket Inn from the Cold here. 

Briefly, here's what they do:

Services offered by Inn From the Cold

Inn From the Cold is a service hub for the homeless and at risk of being homeless. We offer our guests a range of helpful services year round that are designed to assist with finding housing, employment, mental health support and other necessities such as hot meals, warm clothing, laundry, internet and bathing facilities.Our goal is to not only provide the basic necessities of food and shelter but also to help our guests upgrade their skills in order to be able to enter or reintegrate into the workforce and to obtain financial stability.

YRCC Rehearsal Review 20-FEB-2017

Monday, February 20th, 2017: Family Day!

6:30 Love Theme from St. Elmo's Fire- Wow! What a beautiful song!

1. Hallelujah: Always a treat to sing this! Having different soloists was fun!
2. Hockey Song Great Wayne Gretzky!
3.We Rise Again: Section C is the hardest part and we did it! It was awesome! I got goosebumps. We also sang the first verse oohs and aahs and they were really cool.
4. Where the Coho Flash Silver: We sang through the whole song so that we could record Joy playing the accompaniment on our keyboard, but it was really hard! There are tempo changes and fermatas and we had some technical difficulties (forgetting that there's a speaker on/off switch on the keyboard). Also, there's the a cappella part which is awkward. I don't think we can sing that without Joy. But, now we'll be able to rehearse it with accompaniment without Joy when necessary up to the a cappella part. We reviewed everything up to the a cappella part as well.
5. Four Strong Winds: We also recorded the accompaniment for this. The same challenges apply here, so we just did it at one tempo, so we could have something, and Joy played something during the a cappella part. We cannot hope to sing this without Joy, but we'll be able to rehearse without Joy when necessary. We reviewed the parts up to the a cappella part here too.
6. Ca-na-da: We recorded this, too. It is a much easier song, and fun, too.

Next week: February 27th ( Joy will be absent, but we have recordings and Anne-Marie! )

6:30 St. Elmo's Fire Group

  • All the Little Rivers (just a sing-thorough)
  • Four Strong Winds (Section F-we'll skip the tricky middle part for now)
  • Song for the Mira (section 2- the oohs)
  • They All Call it Canada (just a sing-through)
  • Where the Coho Flash Silver (bar 27, review up to a cappella)






Thursday, February 16, 2017

YRCC Rehearsal 13-FEB-2017

Monday, February 13th, 2017 at St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church in Aurora. Thanks, again, for providing us a home when we're bumped out of our room at the Administrative Centre!

St. Elmo's Fire small group started at 6:30

1. Unity: We learned the whole difficult part on page 2! This beautiful piece holds a special place in our hearts because it was created by a friend of our friend Rob for Canada's 125th birthday. The arrangement was prepared by a friend of Blair's and by me just for us. In case you didn't catch the words of the second verse, which were somehow missed, here they are:

Through respect and dignity
Will come peace and unity
No race, religion, skin nor creed
For you are you. And I am me
Together we're we.

2. Where the Coho Flash Silver: We learned A (the soloist will be Blair or Todd, with the other as back-up) and B (the soloist will be Daphne or Ellen, with the other as back-up). We reviewed C, D, and E and now we're almost done! We looked at the ending, too. We still need review, and there are little bits that we seemed to have missed, but it's awesome.

3.We Rise Again: We sang section F first, where S2ATB have melody and S1 has a descant, and looked at the key change too. There is a small difference in the tenor section which we will ignore. Tenors can sing with Bass throughout that section. We will look at section C next week. It's where there are 4 parts and it's cool.

Monday, February 20th: Family Day -regular rehearsal in our room 

6:30 Small Group St. Elmo's Fire

  1. Four Strong Winds- once through to record
  2. Hallelujah- a treat for missing time with our families :-)
  3. Hockey Song- a family day treat
  4. We Rise Again- section C
  5. Where the Coho Flash Silver- once through to record, plus bits we missed





Wednesday, February 8, 2017

YRCC Rehearsal Review 06-FEB-2017

Monday, February 6th, 2017

6:30 V'la l'bon vent was excellent! We've got it moving now, and we'll have an awesome surprise too!

Warm-ups today included trying out harmonies for Happy Birthday! Now, you'll be able to impress your friends and family when you sing Happy Birthday. It was my birthday on the 5th, so I enjoyed being sung to in such a wonderful way! Thank you!

1. Unity is a song written for Canada's 125th birthday by a friend of Rob's, Kathleen Deters, at the same time as Rob wrote and produced a play, Sentimental Journey. They performed the song together with Rob's cast and crew on several occasions in 1992. We are honoured to be chosen to honour her memory by learning and sharing her music. Unity is a sweet and catchy song that you'll be singing all day long.

2. O Canada is going to be great! We tried singing the first verse with the with piano accompaniment, then the pines and maples verse a cappella, then the French with piano and an extra chorus of English as an ending, It was excellent, but I'm still considering different variations.

3. Four Strong Winds: I had goosebumps several times! It was beautiful! We learned C and then went back to the beginning and learned A and B. Take note: the tenors have the melody at A and B, so sopranos and altos don't! Cool!

4. Song for the Mira: More goosebumps! At one point I had goosebumps not only up and down my arms, but across my body, a big frisson! I love this piece! We learned half of section 5 and reviewed the Can you imagine part. It's hard, but so satisfying!

5. We Rise Again: I am looking for a soloist for this. I'd like to hear a few possibilities. We sang through, and a bunch of people sang the solo part to see if they felt comfortable doing it. It's not easy, but the parts are recorded and you can review your part on line. We've forgotten it, but it won't take us long to pick it up again. Please review your parts, everyone, to make it easier.


Next week: Monday, February 13th 

We will not be in our usual room again, having been bumped. We're rehearsing at St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church in Aurora, on Mosley. 

6:30 Love Theme from St. Elmo's Fire Small Group


  • Four Strong Winds (D, and E?)
  • Unity 
  • We Rise Again (section F on page 9, then C on page 5)
  • Where the Coho Flash Silver (Try solos- A: Blair/ Todd and B: Daphne/Ellen and continue with C, D,E)



Listen to all kinds of music. Share it.

So, researchers have said that people who listen to more than one genre of music tend to be smarter, more creative, open minded, and honest. 

Is it because of those traits that people are drawn to different kinds of music, or does music inspire people to be better? I think it's both. Maybe it's good, smart people who introduce their children to all kinds of music as part of their education, or up-bringing, who start the cycle? I believe we need to include much more music in children's education, all kinds. I know music inspires me in a million ways. 

Just more than one genre is all it takes? Only one more genre than pop, or rock, or classical can do that? Cool! If you only like rock, then all you have to do is add one other genre? If you only like classical, then you only need one other type of music to make you smarter and more creative? Imagine if you added two or three? I like almost every kind of music I hear, and listen to all kinds. All of the buttons on my car radio are used, and I'd like more. I'd like to hear more world music, and more folk on the radio, but there's so much more, and readily available, than what's on the car radio!

I like that the new "radio", internet sites, YouTube, the Spotify and Apple Music-type things, offer playlists of all kinds: genres, moods, artists, eras, etc. It's amazing what you can listen to while you write on your blog! If you haven't tried it, do a Google search for relaxing music playlist, or study playlist, or Harry Belafonte playlist!

I'm so grateful for all the music in my life! I aspire to being smart and creative, open-minded and honest, and I hope that I inspire that in my children. I know they are both very musical and open-minded consumers of all kinds of music. I sang and danced and made music with them from the moment of conception. My mother and father probably did the same for me. 

I also had wonderful teachers, excellent music teachers, and musical teachers in my very early years. We all had band and orchestra in Junior High School when I was young. Many of us continued to choose music in high school I have an appreciation for jazz because of Mr. Miner. Maybe I'm crazy for John Williams because of my band experiences with him and Mr. Beatty and Mr. Eason and more recently, Madame Leblanc. (It's not the movies. I haven't seen most of them.) Kids I went to school with learned to play violin, viola, and cello and bass, and played music from Bach's Brandenburg Concertos, in grade 8! It was normal. It was awesome. My kids had an excellent music program at their school, but it was exceptional.

Music is magical. Explore the world of music and take your kids there, too!




Saturday, February 4, 2017

YRCC Rehearsal Review 30-JAN-2017

Monday, January 30th, 2017

6:30 V'la l'bon vent Bilingual Small Group. Fun! We added spoons and a few repetitions of the chorus so we modified the arrangement from a slowish and soft song to a joyous jig!

Warm-ups were just to get our bodies ready to sing and our spirits ready to sing together. The vocal warm-up was our first song.

1. Ca-na-da from Canada's Centennial is so sweet, we'll sing it twice and we'll invite the audience to sing along the second time. Sopranos are on top (one little, two little,...) and Altos, Tenors, and Basses are all on the bottom singing the main melody.

2. Coho Flash Silver is still stuck in my head! What a sticky melody! We did the difficult part, the a cappella section at E and then the ending. You should have enough of a feel for the song to practise on your own with the recordings at home for a while, as we move on to other songs.

3. Song for the Mira: We just reviewed the Can you imagine part we learned last week, and that was hard enough.

4. Song for Canada: we learned the ending ahs. Mark on your music where you sing. We move around a bit.

5. All the Little Rivers: we just sang it through to remember what we've learned. I think this song is also ready for some individual rehearsal at home. We've learned the trickiest bits together. If you're not sure how to use the recordings at home, ask someone on the executive or the person you sit next to. The resources are there for you. Take advantage.

Next week, Monday, February 6th:

6:30 V'la l'bon vent  Bilingual Small Group meets again. We might be able to finish. We were just not sure of the tempo and dynamics, but the parts were very good already.


  • Four Strong Winds (starting at C)
  • O Canada (French words)
  • Song for the Mira (5)
  • Unity (new)
  • We Rise Again (run-through with potential soloists)


Wednesday, January 25, 2017

YRCC Rehearsal Review 23-JAN-17

Warm-ups were different moves done as we sang Frere Jacques in a 4-part round. It was not easy.

1. All the Little Rivers is so cool! We worked on the a cappella part and it was excellent! It reminds me in parts of Pocahontas :-) I love Pocahontas too. We worked on the dynamics of the rest of the song. Make sure you pay attention to where to those ps and fs and mfs! Also, save your ff for the parts that are marked ff. This is a very challenging song, so use the recordings to help you if you're feeling uncertain.

2. Hockey Song! We learned sections B and C and sang to the end. It's not as easy as it sounds, so listen to your part recorded for you and posted on the website. It will help!

3. Song for the Mira. We learned the 4-part section before 5 "Can you imagine". It's my favourite part of the song. (aside from the words "stars on the river face sparkle and spin". Sometimes a group of words makes me especially happy. The "snow was falling snow on snow, snow on snow"of Bleak Midwinter is my all-time favourite. Maybe I just like the alliteration of sibilants.) The timing here is pretty tricky, and we all have to be together. If you missed this rehearsal or just want to review what we learned, go to the website and download the recording of your part. Sing along, watching your music and listening. For a challenge, listen to another part and sing your part with it!

4.Ca-na-da. If you remember this from the Centennial, you're lucky. I don't quite remember how it goes, and a bunch of us are even younger than I am, but we'll learn it. We have to learn a bit of French for this song, too! Wow! We're becoming so bilingual! We talked a bit about changing the words, since it refers to the centennial year and the population at the time. I think we should sing it as is. It's history. And, we can make fun of the word sesquicentennial instead of singing it. My plan at the moment is for the Altos, Tenors, and Basses to sing the main melody and the Sopranos can sing the special bits on top.

Next week, Monday, January 30th:

Bilingual small group V'la l'bon vent starts at 6:30.


  • All the Little Rivers (B and C)
  • Ca-na-da
  • Coho Flash Silver (E)
  • Song for the Mira (5)
  • Song for Canada (ending)