Blog Archives

NO rehearsal tomorrow!

Good Morning!

Reminder – NO rehearsal tomorrow. We’ll see you all back, hopefully well rested, on October 13th. You’re sounding so wonderful, and we’ll give you folks a chance to “step out” so you can hear the group……we think you’ll be pleased.

“Mind the Gap” – have a look at our Active Members’ Page on our website

The Board and Fundraising Committee thought it would be helpful for us to see how we’re doing with our fundraising this term and we have a wonderful thermometer to check it out. We’re hoping to raise $12,000 and we’re already about half way there! Woohoo! We know some of you are still planning to make a contribution through your fees, thanks.

AND there is the “Walk in the Park” Walk-a-thon on Sunday, October 14th from 1:00-5:00 p.m. at Gage Park – you can walk, or sponsor, or get sponsors for a walker. This is also a pot luck social, so come along just to hang out even if you’re not walking.

Our concert is confirmed for Dec. 1st at 7:00 p.m. at HARRRP. More details will be available soon.

Hope you have a beautiful, restful and fun Thanksgiving weekend.

The Board, Hanna & Sue

Reminders & Rewards

Hello all you wonderful singers!

The first two rehearsals have gone really well, and you sound amazing! But why should I be surprised, eh?! Thank you for your joyful participation.

Info – to get onto the Active Members’ Page of our website you need the password, which is XXX.
Hanna’s playlist is up and Carol Greene’s songs.
Please DO NOT listen to, nor practice Solstice Carol – it’s a slower version, and I don’t want you to get comfortable with that pace, as it often becomes a dirge.

Helpful reminders:

  • Please arrive by 9:45 to sign in on Saturdays; we begin promptly at 10:00.
  • Please don’t wear scented products – we don’t work that hard to churn up a sweat!
  • Say hello to someone who is new to you.
  • As said at rehearsal last week, please ONLY use pencil on the choir music and especially DO NOT mark it with highlighter. If this is your preferred way, you are able to make a copy for your own personal use and mark it to your heart’s content. (some music we have had to purchase printed scores from which we can make copies. If we have to replace them it’s more expense to the choir)

Walk-a-thon – Our “Walk in the Park” – Sunday, October 14th at 1:00 in Gage Park, with a pot luck social and singing! Sign up and get sponsors – even a few dollars helps. If you can’t come, speak with Andrea about getting pledges for another walker.
If you have raised $250 in pledges send us an email right away – first one we receive – you’ll have your membership free next term!

Take care out there, and see you Saturday.

Autumn Details

Welcome back to YOUR choir – our main goals are to have fun while learning music from the many cultures who call Hamilton home.  We also learn about healthy singing AND develop our musical skills, and encourage experienced members to help new folks both with orientation AND their skills.  We endeavour to be a community together…

If you are receiving this email, but shouldn’t be on this list, please let us know – we’ll correct it as soon as possible.
Please bring your name badge back – a suggestion is to tie it into your folder at the end of each rehearsal and it will be there next week.  We’ll have new name tags for new members.
Please return any music from previous terms – a sorting bee will take place after this week’s rehearsal.
Finances – for those of you who are planning to pay for the term we’d like to have any fees in by the end of September – this helps the Board determine how much needs to be raised to cover our costs for the season.
“A Walk in the Park” – our annual walk-a-thon is on Sunday, October 14th at 1:00 p.m. in beautiful Gage Park.  It’s an easy and fun way to meet and get to know other choir members AND raise funds for your choir.  Pot luck munchies before/during/after!  Singing has been known to break out during this event 🎶
You can register to walk and pick up a sponsor sheet at rehearsal.
There is NO rehearsal Oct. 6th – Thanksgiving weekend🌽🍎!
Our winter concert is the evening of Dec. 1st… more details to come.
Looking forward to seeing you tomorrow!

Hello Everyone!

Hello everyone!

We hope you’ve had a wonderful summer break and are raring to go and get back together with your friends to sing… we are!!!
Our first rehearsal is this Saturday, Sept. 15th at HARRRP, 705 Main St., East, Hamilton.  Please arrive by 9:45 to sign in and pick up your music.
This is an open rehearsal.  Afterwards registration will be closed for the term, and our contact lists updated to add new members AND move those not returning this term to our Alumni list.
If you plan to come back this term and haven’t already registered, please do so at:
If you’re not sure if you registered, please do so again – we can delete any duplicates 😉
Our fee is $125 for this autumn term, and sliding scale – down and up.
Payment can be made by cash or cheque in person to our treasurer, Tom Ciancone, at rehearsal, online via e-transfer (link on the registration page), or Paypal (please note – we pay about 3% to Paypal, so if you want more of your contribution to go to the choir, please consider one of the other ways).
Folks, this is by the honour system – no one will come asking you about paying – we respect that each of us is in a different place and want to make sure all of us can participate.  Also, you’ll be hearing about our autumn fundraising activity at rehearsal on Saturday…….should be fun, and is literally a walk in the park!
Looking forward to seeing all of you!
Sue & Hanna

A Concert Well Done!

Congratulations on a concert well done!

My hubby, an unapologetic critic of everything, was unreserved in his praise – “the best concert yet” were his very words. The after-party buzzed with excitement from choristers and audience alike. Pat yourselves on the back – you’re in the choral adult class now.

From where I was standing, it looked like we drew a good crowd. Thanks again to the 5 individuals who took charge of the gift basket initiative. Thanks again to Jenny, our fearless concert co-ordinator, for pulling it all together in the end. Thanks again to our choir directors Hanna and Sue for wringing the best out of our diverse membership. Thanks again to the Hamilton Sings board of directors for putting in the necessary hours on administration and institution building. And ultimately, thanks again to you – you, that lone voice made mighty when united with kindred spirits every Saturday morning.  Adele may be big, but you guys are massive.

We’ve got a last bit of business to take care of before the term really ends . . . . SHEET MUSIC RETURN and social, this Saturday May 5th starting at 10:15 pm at HARRRP. Somebody is bringing some muffins, so bring along your morning coffee and if the mood strikes you, additional snacks to share. We’ll chat about this past term, our current lives, and future terms to come, all while sorting sheaves of music scores. Our librarian Susan looks forward to your assistance. I’ll be hovering with the label-maker in hand – and will need help spelling almost everything.

Hugs to all you fine, fine people,

Brenda Atkinson

Hamilton Sings Volunteer

Illuminated by a Fierce Light!

Hey Gang. 

Spring has sprung and I just finished a walk through Laking Gardens. Saw a blue heron, a red-winged blackbird, a red-headed woodpecker, and almost got mugged by a flock of chickadees. Here’s the choir current events  – now illuminated by a fierce light!

DRESS REHEARSAL SATURDAY APRIL 28TH at 8:45 a.m., Christ’s Church Cathedral, 252 James Street North (near Barton)., church parking as well as city lot parking are available on the east side of the Church on Hughson St. 

Of course you’ll  have your music in a non-noisy folder and in concert order. Test-drive your shoes for comfort, as there’s no sitting down for you buddy.

HAMILTON SINGS SPRING CONCERT “FIERCE LIGHT”, Christ’s Church Cathedral, Sunday April 29th, 1:00 p.m arrival for choir members, warm-up starts at 1:15, doors for public at 2:15, concert start at 3pm, $10/person or $30 family of 3+, sliding scale

Wear those comfortable shoes you tested out Saturday and don whatever makes you feel like God’s gift to the world. Make sure you’ve needled your friends and family to bring cash so they can invest mightily in our gift basket raffle items.


Here’s hoping all of you can make a contribution of some non-messy, hand held munchies, to be shared with attendees at our post-concert reception. Don’t forget that not all of us have a sweet tooth, so savory items are as much appreciated as your Grandma’s chocolate chip cookies. Including an ingredients list can also make life easier for those of us with allergies/intolerances. We will not be offering any beverage service; however guests are permitted to bring along a bottle of something… But leave the hooch at home!

Additionally – and this is important – please be prepared to take any leftovers, as well as the containers they came in, HOME WITH YOU. We’d like this to be a zero-imprint event for the generous souls who maintain the cathedral.


After 10:30 am, debrief with your fellow singers while adding to the librarian’s workload, feel free to bring along some munchies to share

See you all bright and early at the cathedral tomorrow.
Brenda Atkinson
Hamilton Sings Volunteer

Concert Time Draws Near

Well folks, concert time draws very near. Are you pumped yet? We’ve got a lot to do, read on:

1.      Voice files. Use ‘em. Internalize those elusive words, pitches, and beats.

2.      Music folders. Get ‘em. And put those sheets in the concert order (subject to change) as follows:

  1. Sho Sholosa
  2. 1,2,1,(fun rote exercise)
  3. Panther
  4. Minun Kultani Kaunas On
  5. Tourdion
  6. Ver Mee O
  7. The Trees of the Field
  8. Come, Love Away
  9. The Sun Comes (Morning Time)
  10. Matlakala
  11. Sumer Is Icumen In
  12. Sho Sholosa (reprise)

3.  Gift baskets. Fill ‘em. Keep in mind that an itemized list of the baskets’ contents will need to be on hand. I’m bringing the wicker baskets tomorrow for sure.

4.  Hand-held treats for post-concert reception. Make ‘em. Both savory and sweet are good!

5.  Concert volunteers, We need ‘em. The following is a rough list of the tasks involved:

  • Reception/Ushers – say hi to concert goers and point them in the right direction
  • Ticket sellers – take the dough and distribute concert programs
  • Raffle ticket sellers – take more dough and talk up those beauties on the raffle table
  • Hospitality table – set up the goodies for the reception, then tear down.

Try to remind your invited guests to bring that old-fashioned thing called CASH. In this age of digital commerce, people tend to rely solely on their bank cards. Ask anybody who lived through the Quebec ice storm a few years back what happens when the grid goes down…

Be aware that street parking beside HARRRP has switched to the east side of St. Clair. You don’t want to give your hard won money to parking infraction officers – why do all those guys bear an uncanny resemblance to Gollum? Precious…

Methinks the red red robins are finally, finally, bob bob bobbin’ along. Whoo hoo!


Brenda Atkinson

Hamilton Sings Volunteer

Creative Alto Ideas

Hi Y’all

How are the concert gift baskets going? Can’t speak for everyone but I was privy to some impressively creative ideas in the alto section last week. Just a reminder that I have been collecting wicker baskets over the past year and will bring them in for everyone’s use this Saturday. Please don’t buy any of that cheapo dollar store plastic stuff – it’ll add to the Pacific gyre dump sooner than you can say Trump’s a doofus.

Please take the time to organize your sheet music in the current concert order, preferably in a black, paper-noise reducing folder. Here’s the list (subject to change):

  1. Sho Sholosa
  2. 1,2,1,(fun rote exercise)
  3. Panther
  4. Minun Kultani Kaunas On
  5. Tourdion
  6. Ver Mee O
  7. The Trees of the Field
  8. Come, Love Away
  9. The Sun Comes (Morning Time)
  10. Matlakala
  11. Sumer Is Icumen In
  12. Sho Sholosa (reprise)

Here come’s a calendar again – the beat goes on:

Friday April 20th, evening,  Hamilton Sings! has been invited to perform at Cinquefoil at Church of St. John the Evangelist, Locke and Charlton, this is an ticketed evening event and details for those who have signed up will be emailed to you separately, in the meantime you can check it out at

Saturday April 28th, 9:00 a.m., concert dress rehearsal at Christ’s Church Cathedral on James North – no going to HARRP that day folks!

Sunday April 29th, 3pm, our term-end concert entitled “Fierce Light”, at Christ’s Church Cathedral on James Street North, $10 at the door (CASH please), $30 for a family of 3 or more, or sliding scale, invite your extended family, neighbourhood, and entire social circle if you wish. We’ll more than likely fill the house, so come early! This will also allow time for concert goers to invest in our soon to be constructed raffle baskets.

Friday June 15th, evening, Sidewalk Sounds on Concession, Andrea will contact everyone as arrangements develop.

Sorry to those counting on it however we’ve decided to postpone a blueberry order as we already have our hands full with everything else. You can only juggle so many obligations before one drops – and a bag of blueberries would make a heck of a mess. Heh.

And… this link–fierce-light/ is for our Hamilton Spectator listing of our upcoming concert. Feel free to forward it to friend and foe alike.

See youse guys tomorrow.

Brenda Atkinson
Hamilton Sings Volunteer

AGM is a cumen in!

Hello Choristers

Tomorrow’s rehearsal is significant for 2 reasons; it’s one of the 4 remaining rehearsals prior to our final concert of April 29 AND is our Annual General Meeting (AGM) of 2018.

A few words from the board for your consideration:

  1. The AGM will start at 10:00 a.m. sharp and hope springs eternal that we can wade through the agenda by 10:30 a.m.. Print off the AGM package sent to you on March 13th or save some trees by sharing a copy with your neighbour.
  2. Elections will be held for 2 board vacancies. Feel free to nominate yourself – the Alto section is currently under-represented on the board.
  3. WE NEED A CONCERT CO-ORDINATOR! This individual will oversee the ushers, box office, concert reception, and gift basket raffle. You’ll have plenty of people pitching in, so don’t be shy – let your control freak tendencies shine, whoever you are.
  4. A fundraising letter has been made available on the web site for downloading. Members can download and customize to suit for approaching particular businesses.

The blueberries are a cumen in! Actual delivery date is still up in the air (April 28th or May 5th) but at $20 per 2k bag of frozen wild Nova Scotia goodness, you’ll be treating yourself to some anti-oxidant deliciousness while contributing handsomely to your favourite choir’s financial well-being. A very healthy choice for all concerned. Orders can still be placed by email request to or track down Jill Detlor (that raven-haired soprano you’ve always wanted to meet).

In closing, I just want to remind you (and myself), that one should not get too distracted by the details above. Administration is always a necessity however one should not linger too long on it. Rather, we gather every Saturday morning with the simple idea of raising our voices together in song as one community with one voice. I know I speak for many when I say that I look forward to our Saturday mornings as an oasis of calm and meditative focus in a world that seems to be increasingly noisy and discordant. Breathe folks, breathe.

One must always remember to sing in the shower.


Brenda Atkinson

Hamilton Sings Volunteer

Easter Greetings

Howdy Folks:

Okay, so I slept in today… Lent is almost over after all…

Calendar considerations abound… read on:

Tomorrow, Saturday March 31st, rehearsal cancelled, the only creatures at HARRRP to greet you will be old church mice and dust bunnies. Happy Easter, Passover, and welcome springtime!

Sunday April 1st, noon, deadline for blueberry interest, submit the google form as sent earlier this week or express your commitment with an email to $20 for a 2 Kilo bag of frozen Nova Scotian goodness, delivery on Saturday April 28th if demand warrrents

April Tuesdays (3rd, 10th, 17th, 24th) choral workshop series, 7-9pm, Delta United Church, $80 or sliding scale, new songs with tips on healthy vocal function and improving music skills

Saturday April 7th, 10 a.m.,  Annual General Meeting (AGM) followed by our usual rehearsal until 12:30 pm

Friday April 20th, evening, we’ve been invited to participate in a ticketed event called Cinquefoil at Church of St. John the Evangelist, Locke and Charlton, sign up sheets at front desk or drop a line.

Saturday April 28th, 9:00 a.m., concert dress rehearsal at Christ’s Church Cathedral on James North – no going to HARRP that day folks! Wear what ever makes you feel fabulous, choose supportive shoes, and house your score sheets in a noise-reducing black folder in concert order.

Sunday April 29th, 3pm, our term-end concert entitled “Fierce Light”, at Christ’s Church Cathedral on James Street North, we’ll need to assemble earlier than 3, and many of you will find yourselves involved in pre-concert preparations – more details to come as things take shape.

Friday June 15th, evening, Sidewalk Sounds on Concession, a street-performance opportunity. Take note of the following developments courtesy of Andrea :

Hi all you fabulous Choristers.

In the words of the “prez” they’re really excited to have us there, and will give us an exact location closer to the date. Takes place from 6-9pm. – relax, we’re not singing for three hours – June15th.  Why don’t you send us your favourite songs – doesn’t have to be part of our repertoire, though we’ll do those too. But they must be easily teachable that we can have our audience sing along with us. (“Row Row Row your Boat” not an option). 

Send me your emails so I can reply direct, without missing anyone.  Will ask Brenda to send this out to the whole Choir with my apologies to anyone I have missed. 

Thanks to all those who signed up.    


Take note that our Treasure Tom Ciancone continues to rest up after eye surgery but his fellow board member Terri is happy to accept any donations that are crowding your wallet. Here’s hoping that everyone has a plan for scoring a contribution for our fundraising concert gift baskets, that you continue to pester your descendants, predecessors, and neighbours to volunteer for our concert, and you check into the Active Members Page occasionally for some fun practice.

We’re still on the hunt for a “concert coordinator” – someone who can oversee all the folks eager to make a contribution to the success of our final concert.This person does not have to be a Hamilton Sings member.  Have a chat with Sue soon to see what’s involved.

Trillingly yours,

Brenda Atkinson
Hamilton Sings Volunteer

Choir Updates

Now on the Site for Choir Members

Click to listen
  • Solstice Carol: Melody – Verse One; Tenor – Verse Two; Soprano – Verse Three
  • Hanna’s Fall Playlist: Link to YouTube
  • Carol Greene’s ‘Me Too’: Link to SoundCloud
Click to see:
  • Our Fall Fundraising thermometer!