The Seven Stages of Concert Week (for Chorus Directors)

Tori Cook Nov 01, 2017

Learn more: concert operations, inspiration


Ah, concert week. We've all been there. Come first dress rehearsal, the chorus seems to be sight-singing and we start to panic. We try to find a solution by reworking everything, cutting pieces from the program, changing notes, and guilting our singers to get some practice time in before the big performance. We are at a complete and utter loss until... somehow, as if by miracle, everything finally comes together beautifully for the performance. Go figure.

Welcome to the seven stages of concert week.



Wait, concert week is here?!



No, no, no, no, no. I don't believe it! We've been practicing this music for months and we still don't know it. This can't be happening to me!



If I remove this difficult piece from the program, will you practice the other one? How about I give you a pitch there so you're not fumbling around? For the love of god, I'll pay you each $10 to just practice!!!



I should have done more to prepare my singers. I should have made them do sectionals. I should have chosen easier repertoire. I should have enforced more practice time. This is all my fault.



This isn't my fault, its my singers' fault! They didn't take the time to practice their music. There's nothing more I can do. They should have known better!



All is lost!


Acceptance & Hope

Final dress rehearsal: Holy crap! Did the sopranos just get that line right? Did we actually end IN TUNE?! Did we just nail that complex rhythm? Maybe we can do this. Bring on that concert!


Sigh. Anyone else in concert week right now?

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Tori Cook

Tori Cook is the former Director of Sales & Marketing at Chorus Connection, an active board member of the Greater Boston Choral Consortium, and a soprano with the Tanglewood Festival Chorus. In a past life, she was the Music Director of the Harborlight Show Chorus and President of Chorus pro-Musica. When not making music, she daydreams about adopting a golden retriever puppy and scuba diving to exotic locations around the world.

Tori Cook