Voices Ensembles 2021
The Voices Ensembles project is underway!
The Voices Ensembles project offers a new, exciting opportunity for professional singers in Aotearoa New Zealand to work and perform at a high artistic level. Choirs Aotearoa has received funding from Creative New Zealand to run a pilot scheme that creates small vocal ensembles of Voices NZ singers. The pilot will run from March to October 2021. Auditions will be held in February and the ensembles will work towards public performances late in the year. We will establish ensembles in Auckland and Wellington in the first instance and consider expanding to other centres should the opportunity arise.
If you would like to audition for an ensemble, please fill in this registration form.
Check out further detail below and if you still have any questions, please email Diana .
K A U P A P A
- To develop and ultimately establish small, one-per-part, regional, a cappella ensembles of Voices NZ singers in this new environment where mass gathering or travel restrictions challenge our usual arts practice.
- To encourage and nurture small ensembles that would ultimately be self-contained and have an enduring life within the artistic framework of Choirs Aotearoa.
- To provide additional performance opportunities to members of Voices NZ.
"This is an exciting opportunity for singers to receive world class tuition in small ensemble performance. The commitment from March to October combines both in-person and virtual tuition. The singers must be available for every rehearsal and performance. The goal of this project is to create professional, one-per-part ensembles with a distinct and, importantly, consistent sound, capable of performing a wide variety of repertoire, to take advantage of increasing commercial opportunities in NZ and overseas, when restrictionless international travel becomes possible. " - Chris Bruerton
P E R S O N N E L
Dr Karen Grylls Artistic Director of Choirs Aotearoa. Karen has the overall artistic oversight of this project.
Chris Bruerton Mentor for Voices Ensembles. As an alumnus of both NZSSC and NZYC, Chris has maintained a close association with Choirs Aotearoa. He has been a member of the world-renowned a cappella ensemble, The King’s Singers, since 2012. His considerable experience as a professional ensemble singer, coupled with his background in teaching, makes him the ideal person to mentor this process.
Diana Cable Project Manager for the establishment of these pilot ensembles
Louise Jakeway Manager Voices New Zealand
Both the Auckland and Wellington ensembles will have a dedicated vocal consultant.
A U D I T I O N P R O C E S S
The process will involve singing alongside other singers to give everyone the best idea of your ensemble skills. We will need to be flexible in trying out different combinations of singers so please expect that there will be time when you are not actively singing. Printed scores of the prepared works will be given to you upon arrival, along with additional pieces for sight-reading.
You need to prepare three pieces of music. Pdf of the sheet music can be downloaded below.
- Kyrie by Byrd
- Morgengebet by Mendelssohn
- Money can't buy me love Lennon & McCartney arr. Abbs (please prepare from memory)
The audition panel will be Karen Grylls, Catrin Johnsson and Chris Bruerton.
Auditions will be held in the following two cities:
Date - Friday 19 February - from 4.30pm to 9.30pm
Venue - Wellington Central Baptist Church, 46 Boulcott Street, Wellington
Date - Friday 26 February - from 4.30pm to 9.30pm
Venue - Pitt Street Methodist Church, 78 Pitt Street, Auckland
D E V E L O P M E N T A N D R E H E A R S A L P R O C E S S
There will be a series of rehearsals and workshops from March to October.
Rehearsals and workshops will be held on Monday evenings. They will be roughly fortnightly, but this will vary depending on Voices NZ commitments and other sessions that Voices singers may be involved in (such as NZ Opera commitments). There will be about 15 rehearsals/workshops.
The rehearsal process will start on Monday 6 March with an introductory workshop led by Chris Bruerton (via zoom) and Karen Grylls. Each ensemble will have up to six workshops with Chris throughout the process, where he will discuss the ensemble’s progress and aspects such as rehearsal and performance technique, building teamwork, memorisation, repertoire and programming approaches, communication, promoting ensembles and building audiences etc.
We are hoping (COVID permitting!) that Chris can be in New Zealand for several weeks in August, so workshops at that time will be in person.
The workshop dates with Chris will be set-in-stone, and the ensembles will have the flexibility to alter the other dates to suit the group.
C O M M I T M E N T
Membership of a Voices Ensemble is in addition to your Voices NZ commitments, not an alternative, and so you will need to be able to commit to all rehearsals, workshops and performances.
R E M U N E R A T I O N
You will be paid the current Voices day rate per rehearsal - $70.