A high degree of personal commitment is required for members to meet the California Desert Chorale’s standards. The Chorale has Monday night rehearsals from September through April; periodic Saturday morning rehearsals; very busy concert week schedules, and occasional community service performances. A substantial portion of the group’s concert repertoire is sung from memory. Therefore, significant individual effort is required between rehearsals.
Membership auditions occur prior to the Chorale’s concert season and intermittently during the season, at the discretion of the Artistic Director. All those interested in Chorale membership must perform an individual audition with the Artistic Director prior to acceptance. Current members may be required to re-audition at any point if the Artistic Director perceives the need.
1. Each auditioning singer must perform a memorized solo work from the classical, folk song, musical theater, American standard or sacred music repertoire. Typical audition material includes operatic arias, art songs, ballads by George Gershwin, Jerome Kern, Irving Berlin, Cole Porter, etc. The musical selection one chooses to use for the audition should readily reflect good breath support, consistent tone quality, accurate tuning and interpretive skill. AUDITIONERS MUST PROVIDE PRINTED SHEET MUSIC FOR THEIR AUDITION SONG.
2. Each auditioning singer will be vocalized in order to test tonal quality, pitch accuracy and functional range.
3. Each auditioning singer will be tested for aural retention of melodic lines, as well as short, spoken phrases of text in English, Latin, Italian, French and German languages.
4. Each auditioning singer will be required to sight-sing (sight read) several short melodic exercises, as well as their respective choral part (Soprano, Alto, Tenor or Bass) for selected portions of Handel’s “Hallelujah Chorus.” A printed score for this piece will be available at the audition (and not before). Auditioners may prepare for this, as they choose, by listening to this piece in the “Listen” section of the Chorale’s website.
5. Each auditioning singer will be asked to discuss his or her prior experience as both a choral and solo singer.
6. Some auditioning singers may be required to work privately on specific technical and interpretive skills as a qualification of their membership, at the discretion of the Artistic Director.
College of the Desert Internships
College of the Desert Internships are offered each spring by the Artistic Director to a select and specific number of students (as approved by the Chorale’s Board) who have demonstrated excellence and dedication as members of choral ensembles and voice classes at College of the Desert.