Wednesday, 20 September 2017

Getting Organised

New Year, New Faces

Any club or group of people who meet regularly for a specified purpose has to have an organisation behind it. Commonly this will take the form of a committee whose job it is to make day-to-day decisions and run the group as the members would wish.

And Cantilena is no exception. With at least three concerts annually to arrange, soloists and orchestral players to engage and music to be sourced, it's not a simple task.

Cantilena is a registered charity and there are some rules to be followed if we are to maintain this status. One of these is the appointment of officers: Chair, Vice-Chair, Secretary, Treasurer, to be exact. The size of the rest of the committee is up to us, but these four are the core.

When you think about it, it's really the minimum needed to make us functional. A spokesperson (and someone to step in if needed), someone to do all the communications and minutes and someone to handle the cash.

Many organisations find that, once a committee is appointed, there it stays, with the same people doing the same job for decades. There are two things wrong with this model.

The first most obvious one is that a few people do all the work, which hardly seems reasonable. Members don't always realise how much goes on behind the scenes, but there are times when it's a fair bit, believe me!

Secondly, when the same group has been operating for a long time, it's possible to get stale. It's harder to find new ideas and there can be a "well it's worked so far, why change?" attitude. Which is all very well, but the wealth of talent and ideas in the group as a whole remains untapped.

So, our constitution states that officers have a fixed maximum term of five years, after which new ones must be elected. Officers can step down with a relieved sense of a job well done and choir members can have a chance to participate more fully by taking their turn.

This is managed via the AGM, which takes place early in the new choir year in September, September 26th this year, to be exact.

We are hoping that new faces will give us new and exciting ideas for the next five years.

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Tuesday, 12 September 2017

Changing Seasons

New Term, New Year

The Summer has gone and we start the new year at Cantilena today. There is always some anxiety: has my voice stood up to a Summer of family parties and very little singing? Will there be new members? It's true that it does take a week or two to settle back in. Some members are still on holiday, so we won't really have an idea of our full complement for a while.

The next concert will be our Christmas concert and it's a strange thing to get into festive mode when September is only half gone. Maybe it's a bit like models who do the photo-shoots for swimwear in January and for winter warmers in July.

The music itself will help in that transition. We will be presenting a selection of the best Christmas items for choirs and I, for one, am looking forward to getting stuck in!

The concert will be on 1st December, just before the first Sunday in Advent, so perfect to get you in the mood.

Make a note in your diary: there'll be more information soon.

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