With different choir leading teachers you will expand your musical comfort-zone, improve your rehearsal technique, create more communication awareness, get tools to improve your singer’s skills and create an inspiring environment within which your singers can make music. Merel Martens will guide you through your studies, together with Marlou Vriens, monitoring your development and creating individual, unique goals. For every first course weekend, we invite a different guest teacher: Jesper Holm (Touche, Vocal Jazz, the conducting toolbox), Peder Karlsson (the Real Group, Organic Choirs, singers tools), Line Groth (co-conductor Vocal Line, Postyr), James Rose (Vocal jazz, Accent, Brave James, arranger) or Signe Sorensen (Mariagerfjord Pigekor, youth choir expert).
The basis of Vocal Leadership can be found in Denmark; Jim Daus Hjernøe created the concept of ‘The Intelligent Choir’: His method is divided into three pedagogical areas:
- Develop your skills within the five musical focus areas (rhythm & groove, intonation & pitch, sound & blend, interpretation & expression, staging & concert design).
- Implement the tool ‘Operating System – Vocal Painting’ (VOPA).
- Expand the singer’s comfort zone in improvisation (liberation of voice, body and spirit).
‘Should rhythmic choir be conducted?’ We will gladly answer that question for you and share our ideas and expertise in this field. In addition, some ‘Organic Choir’ ideas are taught. Several games, created by Peder Karlsson, Marlou Vriens and Merel Martens, will be introduced to the students. Games that are based on rotated leadership and initiative, movement, creativity and self-awareness. Jesper Holm is the vocal jazz experts in this team. Vocal Jazz needs a slightly different approach and with the experience of these experts you’ll be provided with specific tools for that. ‘The Conductors Toolbox’ is a method Jesper created for rehearsing scores. Merel and Marlou will bring you the core tools for working with choirs liek rehearsal technique, vocal painting, vocal technique and more, combining a safe enviroment with a positive approach. Don’t we all want to have fun while making music and learning something new?
Teachers: Marlou Vriens, Merel Martens and guests: Peder Karlsson, James Rose, Signe Sorensen, Line Groth, Jesper Holm
Move & Groove
Move & Groove class! This class can also be defined as ‘physical eartraining’. Main goal is to create more awareness of the rhythmical and musical communication we do using our bodies. By using our voice, bodysounds, percussion instruments and much more we train our non-verbal communication and musicality. For music making we use all of our body!
Teachers: Freek Koopmans, Glenn Liebaut, Ben Schuetz, Sarah Lasaki, Esther Diethelm & Merel Martens
A harmonic understanding is important for vocal music leaders. In this class we connect music theory to actual choir rehearsal by using scores as a starting point. Rhythm, melody, harmony and groove will be improved upon quickly.
Teachers: Syd Horster & Jeroen Zijp
Conducting & Embodied Leadership
Our non-verbal musical communication is very important. Students are trained to communicate with their singers with a ery clear conducting language. Jesper Holm teaches from his methodology ‘the Conductors toolbox’.
Since Spring 2023, Merel teaches a class called ‘Embodied Leadership’. What does the physical energy do to the music and how can you change the sound and energy of your group? And when does the conductor stand in front of the group in rehearsals and concerts, and when can you step aside?
Teachers: Jesper Holm & Merel Martens
Voice – Elective
In our singing classes we connect voice theory to our choir practice. To get an optimal choir sound, we need to know how to use the instrument and how to teach this. During voice and voice theory classes there’s room for some individual tips and tops but we also sing arrangements and implement vocal technique.
Teachers: Marlou Vriens, Syd Horster
The piano is a great tool to help you and your choir in rehearsal. But how often and in what way, ideally? A good choir leader can be flexible, accompany the choir when necessary, give a harmonic context and a groove to support the rehearsal proces and inspire the singers by creating a suitable musical atmosphere.
Teachers: Axel Blom
Arranging – Elective
A good choir needs good arrangements. It is important that a vocal leader can make his or her own arrangements and has a good idea of what makes an arrangement succesfull. In our arranging classes our teachers give each student different assignments that will take him or her to the next level. Different arranging styles will be examined.
Teachers: Line Groth
Vocal Leadership in School – Elective
This elective class for music teachers combines our VL tools with regular classrooms. Learn more here.
Teachers: Stephanie Kramer & Mathieu Vulto