How to Audition & Join

Welcome! We’re so glad that you’re interested in our programs. Brooklyn Youth Chorus offers exceptional choral music training for both boys and girls, grades 2-12. No experience is required, but a love of singing and enthusiasm for music is essential.

It goes without saying, but even though we are virtual right now – our students are still learning.

At Brooklyn Youth Chorus, when we train singers, we also nurture their voices. We consider a young voice a resource that needs care, encouragement and time to blossom. Our training is based on voice science, health, and a comprehensive approach to building sight-reading and music literacy skills. The old-fashioned notion of learning by doing still applies – even virtually.

Our goal is to develop each singer’s full musical potential so they can deliver polished and authentic performances across a range of genres and styles. Although we’re virtual right now, this goal hasn’t changed.

Register Returning Students   New Student Form


Virtual Fall 2020 Overview

This fall, Brooklyn Youth Chorus will continue to offer exceptional programming that allows choristers to maintain a connection with each other and the Chorus. While all instruction from September through December will be virtual, we feel strongly that this format will give us the opportunity to expand choral music beyond the traditional confines of the rehearsal room and concert hall.

Based on the recommendations and guidance from the New York City Health Department and the Centers for Disease Control, we recognize that virtual learning, or some hybrid model of online and in-person classes, may need to be extended further into the spring. As conditions permit, we will look into holding small group rehearsals or meet-ups in spaces appropriately sized for social distancing. We will let families know in November about our instructional plans for January 2020 and beyond.

Program Structure and Instruction

Levels 1-6 will require approximately the same time commitment as in previous years. However, during our virtual instruction period, class time will be divided in different ways to best take advantage of different learning styles and our virtual format.

  • Each Zoom rehearsal class will include vocal development work, using our trademarked Cross-Choral Training approach.
  • Group Zoom rehearsal time will also be spent preparing choral repertoire for virtual recording projects and longer-term performance goals. Some portion of this time may include splitting out into voice part groups for sectional work.
  • In addition to Zoom rehearsals, time will be designated each week for home practice and independent or partner work on special projects including recordings.

Divisions

Levels 1 and 2

  • One group rehearsal per week via Zoom (60 min/week). Class time will include
    teacher-led and off-camera activities
  • Access to online resources for self-directed learning
  • Participation in virtual chorus presentations

Level 3

  • One group rehearsal per week via Zoom (90 min/week). Class time will include
    teacher-led and off-camera activities
  • Access to online resources for self-directed learning
  • Participation in virtual chorus presentations

Level 4, 5, and 6 (Weekly Time Commitment – 2 Hours)

  • One group rehearsal per week via Zoom (90 min/week). Class time will include
    teacher-led and off-camera activities
  • Self-directed learning activities and special projects (30 min/week)
  • Participation in virtual chorus presentations

Class Structure

During our virtual instruction period, class time will be split between three (3) different segments, which includes full group and small group instruction as well as a mix of online instruction and independent work.

  • The first segment of each rehearsal class will be vocal development work.
  • The remainder of the rehearsal will be spent preparing choral repertoire for virtual recording projects and longer-term performance goals. Some portion of this time may include splitting out into voice part groups for sectional work.
  • During the third component of each day, students will work in smaller groups, rotating through short classes in solo repertoire, music theory, and applied musicianship (sight singing and ear training). Additionally, a portion of time will be left open each week for independent or partner work on special projects, recording, and home study.

Integrating Technology (Levels 5 and 6 only)

We are excited to be able to offer our students instruction in working in digital music platforms for music notation, theory and ear training, and audio recording. The Soundtrap online recording studio makes it possible for students to experience part-work and harmonizing with classmates. Recording provides a wonderful tool for self- evaluation and teacher feedback in addition to creating virtual performances students can share. Students will also gain experience working in music notation programs such as Noteflight.

Performances

While it may be some time before we are able to perform standing side by side, there are still opportunities to participate in virtual chorus projects.

We have reenvisioned our annual winter concert as a Home for the Holidays virtual event, and are hopeful that we will be able to return to live performing for our year-end Spring Sings finale. More details to come!

Tuition and Financial Aid

Brooklyn Youth Chorus is committed to offering high-level chorus education to all who have a desire to sing, and we will continue to serve families regardless of their financial situation.

If your financial circumstances have changed, please don’t hesitate to contact us. We value having your child in our community and will be happy to discuss the variety of financial aid options available.

FAQs

How can a virtual chorus experience compare to singing in-person? Isn’t the point to sing together?

Those of us who sing truly understand part of what has been lost during the Covid-19 pandemic. Of course, our preference is to have adorable children singing together in-person each week. But singers are also a resilient group and we have completely re-envisioned our program to provide the same quality of vocal instruction and music education in a virtual environment. And we will be providing numerous opportunities for choristers to express themselves and sing together while we remain virtual.

What is the minimum technology I will need to participate in Virtual Programming?

At the minimum, you will need a phone, tablet, or computer with the Zoom app installed and a good internet connection (wireless or wifi) that can handle live video.

What are your plans for virtual vs in-person rehearsals for the Spring 2021?

Like you, we are eager to come back together in person as soon as possible, and plan to do so as soon as we can be sure we will all be safe and protected. We are currently hoping for a return to in person classes in January, but recognize that we may need to continue with virtual learning for the full season. We plan to confirm our plans for January in November.

I’m worried that my child will be sitting in front of a screen for too long. What is it like to participate in a virtual rehearsal with BYC?

When we train singers, we train their full bodies, not just their voices. All rehearsals begin with active stretching and warm-ups. Students will be asked to hold correct posture, stand when needed, and be generally active during each rehearsal.

Will my child be able to socialize with other students?

While rehearsals are primarily times for learning, there will be opportunities at the beginning and end of each rehearsal for socializing. Students will also participate in activities that encourage group participation. And we hope to create opportunities throughout the year for purely social activity.

Register Returning Students

Watch our Recent Virtual Performances


Auditions for New Students

** COVID-19 AUDITION UPDATE **

Due to the restrictions on public gatherings and social distancing measures, Brooklyn Youth Chorus is temporarily waiving auditions for new singers until further notice. New singers will be automatically placed into the entry-level division based on their current age. Once social distancing rules have been lifted, students may be asked to complete a ‘new singer assessment’, in addition to classroom observations, to ensure the best placement within the Chorus’s division levels

If your young person is interested in joining Brooklyn Youth Chorus for the 2020-21 season (September 2020 to mid-May 2021) please complete and submit the form below or click here to open in a new window.


Division Information

Brooklyn Youth Chorus’s division structure is organized by both age and level of skill and experience. Most new choristers begin in one of the Training Divisions—Levels 1 to 6 and Men’s Training. Advanced singers (ages 11+) may be placed in one of the three  Performing Ensembles. The number and length of rehearsals, as well as the number of performances each year, increase as a chorister progresses through the program.

TRAINING DIVISIONS

  • Prep (boys and girls; ages 7-9)
    • Level 1 & 2: 1 hour, 1 day / week
  • Pre-Teen (boys and girls; ages 10-12)
    • Level 3: 1.5 hours, 1 day / week
    • Level 4: 2 hours, 1 day / week
    • Level 5: 2 hours, 1 day / week + extra 2 hour rehearsal approximately 2 times / semester
  • Teen (boys and girls; ages 13+)
    • Level 6: 2 hours, 1 day / week + extra 2 hour rehearsal approximately 2 times / semester
  • Men’s Training (boys with changed voices; ages 12+)
    • 2 hours, 1 day / week + extra 2 hour rehearsal approximately 2 times / semester

PERFORMING ENSEMBLES

  • Junior Ensemble (boys and girls, ages 11+)
    • 2 hours, 2 days / week
  • Men’s Ensemble (boys with changed voices, ages 12+)
    • 2 hours, 2 days / week
  • Concert Ensemble (boys and girls, ages 11+)
    • 2 hours and 15 minutes, 3 days / week

Choristers are assessed each spring to evaluate their progress and determine their readiness for placement into more advanced chorus divisions.


Tuition and Financial Aid

  • Tuition varies and is determined by division and level. More information about tuition will be included if accepted into the program.
  • Brooklyn Youth Chorus encourages families who need assistance with tuition to apply for financial aid. When you receive your acceptance letter, you will be notified of our financial aid application dates and processes. Families may need to provide tax returns and pay stubs or evidence of receiving social services benefits as part of the application process. You do not need to be receiving social services benefits to qualify for financial aid.