Frequently Asked Questions

Joining a choir

How do I join a choir?

It's very simple! Every choir (with the exception of the Hodgson Singers) accepts new members at the beginning of each semester. The course numbers and rehearsal schedules for each choir are published in the UGA Schedule of Classes each semester, but the easiest way to join is by using the UGACDA website. Simply navigate to the "Choirs" tab and click the "Join Us" button next to the choir you're interested in. You'll be directed to a page where you can share some information about yourself, and then someone will get back to you regarding when you should come for your placement hearing!

What does a placement hearing look like?

A placement hearing is the chance for the choral faculty to hear what your voice sounds like in terms of range and tone quality. Once they've heard what you can do, they can recommend which ensemble(s) would make the best fit for you. A traditional placement hearing takes roughly 10 minutes and includes vocalizing to your highest and lowest register, melodic memory exercises, and a short excerpt of one of your favorite hymn or folk tunes (Happy Birthday, My Country Tis of Thee, Amazing Grace, etc.) Those students interested in auditioning for Hodgson Singers will also be asked to sight-sing, and sing scales/intervals of various qualities.

Where do auditions and choir rehearsals take place?

All choir-related activities take place in the UGA Choral Suite on the 3rd floor of the Hugh Hodgson School of Music.

Can I join more than one choir?

Yes you can! Students can join as many ensembles as they can find time for!

Will singing in a choir take up a lot of my time?

It depends on which choir you join. Hodgson Singers, UGA's premier choral ensemble, has the most extensive rehearsal and performance schedule - often including off-campus travel for high school choir clinics and concerts out-of-town. Most of the groups however only do about 1-3 concerts every semester and rehearse between 2 and 4 hours per week. You can see the rehearsal schedule for each chorus on the "Choirs" tab, but on your first day of class you'll be given a syllabus with all of the extra-curricular obligations your ensemble has for that year. This includes all of your concert dates and any extra rehearsals you may be required to attend. If you stay on top of things and plan ahead, you won't have any trouble coordinating these dates with any of the other things you may want to do while at UGA.

Can I choose which choir I sing in?

It depends on your major, and the type of ensemble. Students that are NOT music-majors can be in any choir as long as they meet the vocal requirements and can fit it into their schedule. For example, a non-major might do a placement audition and be told by the choral faculty that he or she is eligible or invited to be in several choirs. That student can then choose which large/small ensemble(s) he or she enrolls in based on ensemble balance and the student's schedule and interests.

Music-majors MUST enroll in the large ensemble that the choral faculty assigns them. All first year music-majors in choir are assigned to one of the Glee Clubs, though they can choose to sing in an additional small ensemble if they are interested and have room in their schedules. Singers in their second year will either be assigned to a Glee Club or the UGA Hodgson Singers, while third- and fourth-year music majors and graduate students interested in singing in a choral ensemble will be invited into either the Hodgson Singers or the University Chorus. All undergraduate students are eligible for consideration into the UGA Hodgson Singers once they have successfully completed a semester in another UGA choral ensemble.

Do I need any prior choral experience to sing at UGA?

No, we have a choir for every level of experience, though all incoming singers are expected to be able to match pitch easily. The Men's and Women's Glee Clubs are a great place for beginner choir members, while Collegium Musicum and Repertory Singers are perfect for more advanced singers that want the challenge of a smaller ensemble. And AACE is just loads of fun! If you have always wanted to sing but have never had the courage, now is the perfect opportunity! We'd love to have you!

Registering for an ensemble

Can I get class credit for singing in a choir?

Yes you can! All ensembles are worth a 1 hour credit per semester and can be repeated indefinitely. Ensemble credits in most majors tend to count for extracurricular activity hours, but you'll have to look at your specific major's requirements to make sure. For updated information on course numbers and rehearsal schedules make sure to check out the UGA Schedule of Classes published each semester.

Do I HAVE to get class credit?

No, if you have already used your hours for other classes related to your major it is still possible to join a choral ensemble. Each semester we admit students whose credit loads are full, but who still wish to be part of a choral ensemble. On your first day of class you will be asked to fill out your contact information to create a class roster, and as long as you are willing to commit to the schedule presented on the syllabus (including weekly rehearsals and the additional evening dress rehearsals and concerts) then you will be welcomed into the choral ensemble.

Necessary materials

Is there a choir uniform that I need to purchase?

Singers in the four large ensembles perform in specific concert attire. Women must purchase a specific concert dress ($75 including shipping) and have it carefully tailored by a seamstress while men must rent or purchase a tuxedo for all concerts. In addition, the UGA Hodgson Singers requires its members to purchase a Hodgson Singer's polo ($25). Members of other choirs have the option of purchasing a choir-specific polo too, but in most semesters this will not be required.

Will I need to buy my choir music?

Nope, music will be provided for singers at no expense, but all pieces of music are distributed to singers on loan and MUST be returned by the end of the semester.

UGACDA

What is UGACDA?

UGACDA stands for the University of Georgia American Choral Directors Association. UGACDA was formed when the University of Georgia Choral Association (UGACA) and the American Choral Directors Association (ACDA) decided to combine into one giant student organization with the purpose of supporting the choral department and the members of the different choral ensembles. UGACDA also serves as a resource for any choral event, activity, or concert that happens here at UGA.

What does UGACDA do?

UGACDA does a little bit of everything. From a logistical standpoint, UGACDA helps organize events, coordinates volunteers, and plan fundraisers. We are also responsible for purchasing the dresses, polos, and black folders that each ensemble uses. But UGACDA does more than just logistics, we are also very involved in recruiting for the choral department and we also try and put together multiple social events every semester like karaoke nights and the annual Spring Formal. But most importantly, UGACDA tries to provide a better academic experience for its members by inviting guest artists and clinicians to come give talks at UGA and by putting together trips for students to go to state, regional, and national conferences.

How do I become a member of UGACDA?

Every choir member is actually a member of UGACDA! Since most of the activities and services we provide are directed at the choral department as a whole, we consider every choral member to be a member of UGACDA.

What is ACDA?

The American Choral Directors Association is a national organization whose central purpose is to promote excellence in choral music through performance, composition, publication, research, and teaching. Because UGACDA serves as a student chapter of the national ACDA organization, our members have the opportunity to register as a member of ACDA and receive additional benefits.

Why should I become a member of ACDA?

There are three reasons you should join ACDA: to contribute to the promotion of music education, to develop yourself professionally, and to get involved in a community of music educators. As an ACDA member you have the opportunity to submit work to ACDA publications and take on leadership roles in the organization or participate in leadership training. Professionally, you gain access to ACDA publications, educational videos, and potential class credit for activates at select national and state conferences. And finally, being a member of ACDA plugs you into a community of people that allow you to network and build relationships with people all throughout the state of Georgia and the United States who interested in the same things you are. If you are a choral music education major, or if you are just extremely passionate about choral singing, I encourage you to join ACDA and take advantage of the many benefits available to you.

How do I become a member of ACDA?

Becoming a member of ACDA is simple! Simply visit the ACDA website at acda.org, click on membership, select "Join Now" and fill in your information! Where it asks what kind of membership you would like, select "Student", and after you've finished the form you'll be an official member of ACDA! Just remember to put us as your student chapter!

More questions

How can I ask more questions about UGA Choirs, and UGACDA?

The faculty and staff at UGA Choirs would be happy to answer any questions you may have about UGA's Choral Department. The "Contact Us" tab has places for questions about UGACDA and UGA Choirs, but you can always contact us directly at either ugacda.gmail.com (for questions about UGACDA and ACDA) or ugachoraloffices@gmail.com (for questions about choral ensembles and placement hearings). We hope to hear from you soon!