We strive to ensure that our members feel energised and valued as part of the choir. Our Voice Representatives, who are part of the Membership team, act as a liaison between choir members and the committee.
General Members Information
Attendance Members are asked to sign in each week on the registers. As we live in the real world we recognise that not everyone will always be able to commit themselves to every single concert. However if wishing to sing in a concert we ask that Members endeavour to attend a minimum of two thirds of the rehearsals for that concert.
Subscriptions At the beginning of each season all subs are due for current members and friends. Also, at any point during the year, once a new member has sung in their first concert they will need to pay some subs. Please refer to the Subscriptions Protocol for details of the amounts to pay and the ways and means of paying. If you are a taxpayer then gift aiding significantly increases the benefit of your subscription to the Society. All you need to do is fill in a Gift Aid form and submit it to Treasurer Gill. All the forms below are appendices within the protocol but are also downloadable directly.
Note added 2 July 2020 (and amended 23 September)- normally we would be chasing people to pay their subscriptions. We do have some ongoing costs so if you feel able to pay all or some of the normal amounts due please refer to the Subs info document for more information. Subs 2020-21 Info Gift Aid Form HCS Subs Protocol Concert Dress In addition to subscriptions members are asked to purchase the necessary items to fit in with our dress code. Ladies normally wear a pair of smart full length black trousers (not jean style or cords or skinny legged) or an ankle length black skirt (ankles being no more than 2 inches above the ground!) with a long sleeved round necked plain black top. When we sing in Ripon Cathedral or a church (in cold weather) additional warmer black layers are allowed. Ladies also wear a choir scarf, red or blue, members own both and the colour for any one concert is announced in plenty of time. For gentlemen concert dress is normally a pair of black trousers with a black shirt or, occasionally, a white shirt. Usually worn with an HCS tie (red or blue to match the ladies), sometimes open-necked. More information will follow in advance of each concert. You will be required to buy both HCS scarves/ HCS ties once you have had a successful voice assessment, they are available from Louise (Alto 1), ties are £13.50 for both, scarves £10 for both. They are provided for Halcyon singers. Also for the Christmas Concert in HIC, gentlemen wear a plain but brightly coloured shirt and ladies wear a shirt style blouse in a plain bright colour ideally with full length sleeves (but 3/4 length sleeves are acceptable).
All choir members also need to have a black choir folder, please purchase one from Deputy Librarian Liz (Sop 2), they are £5 each. Again they are provided for Halcyon singers. Please will existing choir members keep their maroon folders in case we sing outside again (as we did at Fountains Abbey) where everyone is wearing coats as they provide a means of everyone looking uniform! Poppies may be worn, should members wish to do so, at any concert in the period from eleven days before, and including Remembrance Day or Remembrance Sunday, whichever comes later, in line with the national custom and practice.
Music Scores Generally
Music for each concert is available to hire to Members for each concert for a reasonable fee. Alternatively you may wish to purchase your own scores. However please note that as we perform Messiah and Christmas Carols every year and we do not offer for hire copies of either Messiah (Watkins Shaw) or 100 Carols for Choirs, although we do have a few copies for potential members to use prior to their voice assessment, we also supply copies for our Halcyon singers. We suggest that potential adult members wait until you have successfully passed your voice assessment before actually buying. We try to keep a stock of pre-owned scores in stock to save new members some money (Messiah £5, Carols £10) - please ask to see what we have! But if you prefer new then both should be obtainable through local music shops (The Music House is good) or online. All choir members are also expected to buy a copy of "The Greatest Choral Classics" edited by our President Brian Kay, once they have passed their voice assessment. The librarian Team have copies for just £10 available at all times.
Learning the Music / Scores etc etc
If anyone needs rehearsal files they are often available on Cyberbass. With the latest version of Cyberbass these files should play on any computer, including Apple devices and tablets. But you must observe 2 rules or strange things may happen. 1. Always single click when selecting a section to play, never double click. 2. Before changing to another section, always stop the first section first, by clicking the pause symbol ll. Alternatively have a look at www.johnfletchermusic.org which also contains many helpful files for helping you to learn various works we are performing. You may need to pay a subscription to use this site. In addition we have various pdfs and midi files for works which we have performed over the years. If you are interested in any of them please ask. If there are midi files relevant to a current work being learned they will either be published here or emailed to you.
The 200 Club A relatively painless way of raising money for the choir. Members may join by paying £15.00 per season (September to June) per pencil - choosing a number from the list of 1 - 200. This is the number of your lucky pencil! You can buy more than one pencil and number; it is up to you. A draw takes place every month at rehearsal, the prizes being 3 @ £10.00 and 1@ £20.00. This represents quite a good return on your money if you win! Forms for the new season will be available in September (this might be a bit different for the 2020-21 season) ... the odds are better than the lottery. David (Bass2) will be eagerly awaiting you in September to get you signed up!
The Suggestions Book The suggestions book is a place for you to let the Committee know which works you would like to perform. For shorter works it would be particularly helpful for suggestions of accompanying works to make a full concert. Every few months (or when there are sufficient entries) the book is reviewed and the Committee's views made public. The results of various reviews are available and at all times please feel free to add requests of your own. Please ensure that all entries are fully completed (with your name and the date as well as composer and suggested work) in order that they can be considered. We also ask that you take into account works already considered and planned as well as those already considered and deemed not suitable (there are lists of all these plus all the works ever performed in the back of the book) and finally please don't suggest works we have performed in the last five seasons. Here is a list of suggestions from Feb 2011 to Feb 2020 planned Here is a list of suggestions from Feb 2011 to Feb 2020 pending Here is a list of suggestions from Feb 2011 to Feb 2020 performed recently Here is a list of suggestions from Feb 2011 to Feb 2020 deemed not suitable
Publicity (Radio) Opportunities for HCS Members Why not contact Classic FM with a music request, as a means of publicising our concerts? Weekdays from 1 - 3 pm they will play music suggested by members of the public so any choir member could help publicise our events by linking it to a music request, it can be done in one of three ways:
Have a go...it's so easy and a great way of promoting our events. Good luck! BBC Radio 3 will also play listeners requests if you send them a tweet!
As most day to day matters are now sent out to choir members in the Sunday email the newsletter has been remodelled (with effect from November 2017) as mainly a newsletter for Friends which will be sent out three to four times per year. The original newsletter was first published in October 2001, the most recent ones are here. Older newsletters available at all times on request - just send the Secretary an email.
The 2020 AGM was held at by email at 7.30 pm on Wednesday 1st July 2020, there was also a choir question and answer session held by Zoom on 24th June 2020. Here are the Minutes which will remain in draft until approved at the next AGM
HCS Constitution and Rules
Now that HCS is a CIO (Charitable Incorporated Organisation) we have updated our Constitution and Rules and created various policies to ensure our governance is fit for purpose. Please click on any of the links below to access the relevant document. HCS Constitution HCS Rules
Please click on the files below to access the relevant policy
During the 2016-17 season and the early part of the 2017-18 season we conducted a survey to see how members thought we should be aiming for in the future. If you would like to read the various consultation documents please contact the Secretary and they can be emailed to you.
Finally....keeping the Secretary up to date... It is also important that you make sure that the Secretary's Member records have the correct phone number and address so that Members can be contacted if we have to cancel a rehearsal - as we did during the winter because of snow. If you are in any doubt then have a word to check what info is on file.