Songbirds is a musical discovery program for 5- and 6-year-olds. The Songbirds explore the basics of singing with a fun, engaging, age-appropriate curriculum which is more like a general music classroom. Using games, songs, and rhythm instruments, the children learn about the following concepts:
Using a healthy singing voice Self-expression through movement/instrument play Thoughtful and active listening to music Keeping a steady beat Following teacher’s directions Following a conductor’s gestures Concert etiquette
The children in the LyricChorus are old enough to engage in a full choir rehearsal. Concepts that are fundamental to choral singing are taught: singing posture, breath support, good diction (which includes correct vowel sounds and articulate consonant sounds), the ability to follow a conductor’s gesture, and the beginnings of reading a choral music score. All of this is taught using games and activities that are fun and encourage the children to work together as a team. We begin with unison singing and progress to singing two-part music. The Lyric Chorus has participated in music festivals and tours of Lafayette, Houston, Kansas City, South Carolina and Disney World.
Concert Chorus members perform a variety of compositions representing many musical styles from all periods. The Concert Chorus continues the development of musicianship in each individual singer, as well as the ensemble as a whole.
The Concert Chorus has appeared at three regional conventions of the American Choral Directors Association. They have presented solo concerts at Carnegie Hall in New York City, performed at St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome, the Palazzo Vecchio in Florence, served as Artists-in-Residence at three universities and performed frequently with the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra and the New Orleans Symphony. The choirs have also won numerous awards in music festivals throughout the Southern United States and frequently perform with the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra.
The Concert Chorus made their solo debut at Carnegie Hall in June of 1997, under the direction of Cheryl Dupont. In February of 1998 they presented a concert with the American Boychoir in New Orleans, and in March 1998 they performed at the national Kodaly convention. In May of 1998 they served as Honor Choir at the Children in Harmony Festival at Walt Disney World.
In June of 1999, NOCC sponsored the first annual Crescent City Choral Festival which was held in downtown New Orleans in June of 1999, culminating with a concert at St. Louis Cathedral. The festival featured ten children’s choirs from throughout the United States. Conductors were NOCC Artistic Director Cheryl Dupont and guest artist Moses Hogan. Subsequent festivals have featured the noted English composer, conductor and singer, Bob Chilcott. In July of 2002, the Concert Chorus served as Young Artists-in-Residence at the Choral Music Experience International Millennium Festival at the National University of Ireland. They were the only American choir to receive this prestigious invitation.
The Chamber Ensemble is a small ensemble for teenage singers who want to perform more advanced music in a small group environment. Rehearsal focus on music independence, expression, and singing in advanced harmony. Because this is a small ensemble, singers can take more ownership over the interpretation of their music.
Singing with the Alumni Chorus is a wonderful way to reconnect with old friends and continue singing choral music as an adult. The Alumni Chorus performs on concerts throughout the year, with a short rehearsal period leading up to the concert. For more information, contact NOCC.