March 18, 2020
The Aeolians of Oakwood University (Jason Max Ferdinand, cond.) singing "Hold On," arr. by Marques L. A. Garrett.
This is the first of a new series of short, weekly Wednesday emails that we are sending - for a time - to support and lift up our members during this challenging period. Do you have an idea, strategy, or words of inspiration for your colleagues? Reply to this email so that we can consider them for inclusion on our website and in future emails.

SmartMusic, a web-based suite of tools for singers and choir directors, is offering ACDA members free premium access through June 20, 2020 . With this platform, singers can work on sight-singing, technique, and performance repertoire, and choral conductors can assign anything from the repertoire library, as well as create, edit, and import their own music with the Compose notation tool.

Two states - Idaho ACDA (contact Max Mendez) and Missouri ACDA (contact Kathy Bhat) - are currently coordinating this option at the state level. If you are in another state, just click here for more information!

Words from Lynne Gackle, ACDA National President:

"Community is at the heart of what we do as musicians, but most especially, as singers. Each of us possesses that God-given instrument, the voice. Recent studies from Sweden show that when choirs sing, after a period of time, heart beats begin to sync with one another (Vickhoff, et al, 2013). Through song, our hearts seem to become ‘one.’ Though ‘different,' we are reminded of the commonalities that make us also ‘same’ – each of us in need of solace, which music can provide. . . . We need each other and a sense of community.  Music and song – from the past, from the present and that which will come in the future will continue to be one of the ties that binds us together and uplifts our spirits even during this challenging time." Full post here

Walter Bitner, ACDA member and ChoralNet blogger, reminds us to continue to make music in his latest post, Off the Podium: Making Music During the Pandemic:

". . . Music is in large part a social art, and choral music in particular may be the most social form of musical expression. Being denied the opportunity to sing with others for the time being, it would be easy for many of us to simply stop making music at all. Listening to recordings is not a substitute for this. Set aside some time each day to simply make music – to do it. Ultimately, it doesn’t matter how – making music in some way every day will help you maintain equilibrium and preserve your lifeline." Full post here

Arizona ACDA posted ideas for remaining connected with your choirs: 10 Ideas for Choir Directors to Stay Connected During the Pandemic

New York President-elect Doreen Frying shares one of her lesson plans for high school choir students as an example for others: High School Choir Online Learning Options: Growing as Musicians

ACDA Performing Choir Audition Update!
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, audition guidelines for performance at the 2021 Dallas conference will have the following changes:

  1. The due date for submission has been extended to May 10, 2020.
  2. Choirs that do not have recordings for the 2019-20 school year because of the pandemic may submit recordings from 2016-17 rather than 2019-20. All auditions must contain a recording from 2017-18 and one from 2018-19.
  3. No re-application for materials already submitted.

ACDA is hosting a webpage that is updated daily containing resources that are particularly useful for choral professional: Resources for Choral Professionals During the Pandemic. Keep an eye on it, and let us know resources we should consider adding!
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