The Concert Choir is one of two choirs in the WCJC Music Department. The enrollment varies from 35 to 50 students, depending on availability of classes. Its membership consists of music majors and non-music majors from many walks of life and cultures. This richness brings freshness to the music repertoire performed, and the unique quality of the choir that performs the repertoire. The Concert Choir performs many styles of choral literature including ballads and folk songs from countries all over the world; standard choral literature from composers such as Brahms, Mozart, Berlioz, Mendelssohn, Handel, Dello Joio, Moses Hogan, Johann Pachelbel, John Rutter, Kirby Shaw,and Daniel Pinkham. From these composers and others, the Concert Choir has performed “Messiah” by G.F. Handel, “A German Requiem” by Brahms, “Christmas Oratorio” by Daniel Pinkham, “Mass in C” by Mozart, and “Gloria” by John Rutter. The Concert Choir has also performed choral selections from Africa, Israel, Spain, Mexico, Czech Republic, Ireland, and Scotland. The choir performs annually for the Choral Dinner/Music Revue, Candlelight Holy Days Concert, Art, Music and Drama Showcase, Choir Tour, and the Spring Concert.
The Chamber Singers are a smaller, more select ensemble with between 15 and 20 members. The repertoire is selected from more intimate, chamber styles of music including music from the Renaissance to contemporary music. Lighter musical styles include folk songs from many cultures, spirituals, gospel, swing, show tunes, and vocal jazz. The Chamber Singers have performed music composed and arranged by Kirby Shaw, James Mulhousen, Kenneth Fulton, John Rutter, and Moses Hogan. Within the Chamber Singers are smaller ensembles including The Women’s Chorus which performs music styles such as boogie woogie, blues, and intimate romantic music such as "The Rose", and the Men's Chorus, which performs styles such as barbershop, blues, and country music.
The choirs take an annual tour in the spring. The tours have taken the choirs to Branson, Missouri; Carnegie Hall; the Bahamas and Cozumel, Mexico on cruise ships; and Disney World and Sea World. Funds for choir tours are raised through fundraising events, the annual dinner show, and donations from various foundations
Although there are no UIL competitions at the college level, choir members have the opportunity to audition for the Texas Two-Year All-State Choir which performs at the Texas Music Educators' Association. Some of the most respected choral directors in the country are selected to be clinicians for this All-State Choir. The best two-year college choir members in the state of Texas are selected to be a part of this prestigious choir. Many members of the WCJC choirs are selected each year to participate in the All-State choir.
Students may audition for the Concert Choir and the Chamber Singers beginning in the fall semester of their high school senior year. Auditions include warm-ups and singing a song like “America" or a UIL-preferred vocal section. Performers are evaluated on vocal range, vocal quality, artistry and technique, sight reading, interval intonation, and skill in holding a vocal part.
Choir scholarships are available to students who audition for the choirs. Choir students are strongly encouraged to go to Financial Aid to explore the possibilities of grants and scholarships that can augment the choir scholarships. Money for tuition costs and free dorm space are offered to students participating in the choirs. Also, music majors are eligible for fine arts scholarships.
There is no cost for choir folders, music, concert dresses, tuxedos, or choir shirts
Frequently asked questions:
Are there extra rehearsals outside of regular choir rehearsal times?
- No! Many of the choir members have to work after school. There are no extra rehearsals for the Concert Choir or the Chamber Singers.
How much does it cost to be a part of the Choir and Chamber Singers?
- There is no extra cost for membership in the Concert Choir and the Chamber Singers. The only out-of-pocket expenses are for choir tours to pay for what is not covered by fundraisers, and food money for those who make the Texas Two-Year All-State Choir in San Antonio. The college provides concert outfits and choir shirts.
Do I have to be a music major to join the Concert Choir or the Chamber Singers?
- No! All students regardless of major are eligible to audition for both choirs and may be eligible to receive choir scholarships.
How difficult are the auditions to get into the Concert Choir and the Chamber Singers?
- The audition is not difficult. Those who have had choral experience have no difficulty making the choirs. Those who have not had choral experience find it a bit more difficult but are almost always successful. The Chamber Singers auditions are a bit more difficult in that sight reading counts more for this choir, but allowances are given to those who have a good ear for remembering pitches.
Are there a lot of concerts that will cause me to miss classes?
- No! Most of our day concerts are with service organizations that meet during lunch. Choir meets during noontime so that community members can come during their lunch times for rehearsals and to join us for large concert works. All of our major concerts are on Tuesday or Thursday evenings on campus. A list of concert dates, times, and locations is given to the choir members on the first day of each semester. This gives the members plenty of time to change work schedules and to notify instructors in case some class time is missed.
If you have any questions, or if you are interested in auditioning for one or both of the choirs, you can contact the Music Department by mail, telephone, e-mail, or fax.
- Wharton County Junior College
911 Boling Highway
Wharton, TX 77488
Fax: (979) 532-6587