Not only is singing fun, but it's also good for you! Numerous studies have demonstrated its health benefits - from getting more oxygen into your blood, increasing the flow of feelgood hormones and improving mental health. And it's a very socially rewarding activity as well. At Heathfield Choral Society, there are no auditions, and anyone is welcome to sing with us for 2-3 weeks to see how they get on before thinking about joining. It's not necessary to read music, although it will make it easier if you do - many members have joined not being able to but have picked it up as they went along.
We have two singing terms in the year:
January to June
September to December
From September 2021, rehearsals are on a Monday evening from 7.30pm to 9.30pm at Horam Village Hall (postcode TN21 0JE). We start the first Monday in September, and finish mid-late June for a summer break. Our main concerts are normally held in the State Hall on Station Road, but we also take part in carol services at nearby churches and sing in local nursing and residential homes. A workshop, on a work we are planning to perform, is usually held in the Spring and is open to non-members. We may revert to our normal venue, Union Church, in 2022 but this will depend on the Covid situation at the time.
Subscriptions are set each year at the AGM, and are £135 (payable in advance) for the year 2023-24, running from September to July. This works out at less than £3.50 per session - about the same as a cup of coffee! Membership is free to those in full-time education.
Members are expected to take part in all main concerts, although obviously there may be occasions where this is not possible. We give a concert at the end of each season but often take part in other performances in the local community as well. Recently we have taken part in:
Verdi's Requiem with Eastbourne Choral Society in March 2012
Puccini's Tosca with Southdowns Opera in October 2012
Joint concert with the Combined Choirs of Forges-Les-Eaux in June 2013, 2015 & 2017
Verdi's Aida with Southdowns Opera in October 2015
Joint concert with Burwash and Cross in Hand Primary Schools in April 2017
Joint concert with the choir from Heathfield Youth Drama in 2018
Members come in all shapes and sizes, and some have never sung before joining. Here's what Howard, a recent recruit to the bass section, thought:
"I joined the choir at the beginning of October after having moved to the area in September and was immediately impressed by the friendliness of those that greeted me and the high standard of the choir, especially considering there were no auditions. I was a keen singer in my youth but work and family commitments prevented me from being able to give the necessary input. I had forgotten the intense emotion that one can feel from singing within a choir. It was magnified manifold by the two pieces that we sang for the Armistice Day centenary – two modern pieces which really captured the emotions of the occasion. Having sung many standard choir pieces over the years I found the new pieces quite challenging but extremely rewarding, which contributed to one of the best musical experiences I have had. Fortunately not all pieces are as sensitive and moving since it was quickly followed by festive Christmas carols!"
Have a go!
Why not give it a go? It will be a lot less scary than you think. If you'd like to try singing with us, please contact our membership secretary, Jenny, via firstname.lastname@example.org or you can click here. We look forward to seeing you!