BEING A MEMBER OF SUFFOLK SOUL SINGERS
Members will usually have reached their 18th birthday before being eligible for membership of the choir. Those joining the choir will be expected to:
- Follow the instructions of the Musical Director or other nominated officer.
- Embrace the ethos of the choir.
- Make every effort to attend rehearsals regularly and participate in concerts
- Be proactive and promote the aims and objectives of the choir.
Subscriptions are to be paid termly to the Treasurer within three weeks of the start of each term. If a member has not paid by the fourth week of term, the Treasurer will alert the Musical Director, who will then speak to the member. If payment hasn’t been received by the fifth week, without a valid explanation, the committee will temporarily suspend the individual’s membership, (i.e. ask them not to attend rehearsals or gigs), until the overdue subs are paid.
The amount of membership subscription is determined by the Trustees. If, for whatever reason, a member is unable to meet the subscription, a decision will be made at the discretion of the committee on a case by case basis.
The choir shall rehearse weekly on an evening decided by the Musical Director. The current regular evening for rehearsal sessions is to be a Thursday from 6.30 pm until 8.30 pm. The choir shall meet at St. Augustine's Community Hub. In the event of this venue being unavailable then arrangements will be made to relocate. If relocation has to be made, the Secretary or a nominated person will contact all members to advise of any changes. Rehearsals will commence promptly at the start time. There may be a break during the rehearsal for refreshments. The choir will meet during term time but will break for the Christmas, Easter and Summer holidays. The exception is when an extra rehearsal is needed in the run-up to an important gig. Other breaks will be at the discretion of the Musical Director.
Members are asked to make every effort to attend at least 75% of rehearsals and as many public performances as possible. If a member is unable to attend a rehearsal and/or performance then the secretary must be informed and the message passed on to the Musical Director. If members have a regularly-occurring reason for absenteeism then the Musical Director must be informed at the earliest opportunity.
Members must attend the final rehearsal prior to a major performance. Failure to do so may render the member liable to be unable to take part in the performance. If a member is absent for more than three consecutive weeks then the choir Secretary may make contact with the member in question.
Member Code of Conduct and Attire
Members attending a public performance not correctly attired may not be permitted to take part in that performance. In such cases the decision of the Musical Director shall be final.
Members are not permitted to be under the influence of alcohol or drugs at a rehearsal or public performance. Any member thought to be so will not be permitted to participate.
Members are not permitted to discuss any details of choir finances or policy outside the confines of the choir. Any member found to be doing so may be asked to resign membership of the choir.
When engaged in choir business no member shall take it upon themselves to make any official complaint to the hiring organisation. If a member has a concern or grievance with the booking agent or venue then the member will inform the choir Secretary who will bring the matter before the committee. A decision will be taken by the committee and it will be their decision if a complaint will be forthcoming from the choir. Any member who officially complains to a booking agent, venue or hirer without going through the choir committee will be deemed to have brought the choir into disrepute.
The choir’s music and musical arrangements are the intellectual property of the Musical Director. Members are not permitted to sell or pass on choir recordings to persons who are not members of the choir. Members are also not permitted to distribute these in any way in the public domain.
Members are expected to play their part in ensuring that the Suffolk Soul Singers is an inclusive organisation in which everyone is treated with respect and dignity regardless of their race, age, gender, religion or beliefs, sexual orientation, disability or social and economic status.
Members are not permitted to behave in an abusive, threatening or intimidating manner when engaging in choir activities.
All members of the choir should engage in a ‘sense of occasion’ and conduct themselves in a professional manner at all times. All members will be expected to follow the directions of the Musical Director at all performances.
Health and Safety
Members have a duty of care, under Health & Safety law, both for themselves and others who may be affected by their actions.
The social aspect of the choir is to be encouraged wherever possible. The choir as an organisation is to nurture a friendly atmosphere and meetings socially are to be encouraged.
Winding up the Organisation
In the unlikely event of winding up the organisation, any revenue after debtors will be distributed to not-for-profit organisations, with preference given to community music projects.
Protocol for Rehearsals & Gigs
Please try to arrive for a 6 .30 pm start. Offers of help to transport and/or set up equipment enable us to begin promptly.
If you are unable to make a rehearsal for any reason, please let Viv know as soon as possible. (email@example.com)
Members are asked not to chat when Andi is teaching, or when other sections are singing. As each rehearsal is recorded, background chatter can spoil these recordings.
For the same reason, it is not helpful to sing your part when Andi is focusing on rehearsing another section’s part.
As a way of encouraging and recognising the efforts of any member who offers to sing lead vocals, all soloists receive a round of applause at the end of a song.
There is an expectation that members will practise songs at home, outside of the weekly rehearsals, using the recordings that are emailed to them or made available on Google Drive. .
SSS is proud of being an inclusive organisation that attracts a diverse group of members and supporters from across all ages, backgrounds and communities. We want all members to feel welcomed and included, so we need to be mindful of the language used in the group. Swearing or negative behaviour that involves sexism, ageism, racism or homophobic comments aren't what we want to experience at SSS; we're all about celebrating the good stuff!
Members will be given notice about the dates and venues of gigs in a variety of ways: at rehearsals, (via 'Parish Notices'), by email and on the 'upcoming gigs' section of this website. Please endeavour to make a note of these in your diaries.
By far the quickest and simplest way to find out about members' availability for gigs is by using Doodle Polls. Please try to respond to any poll requests as promptly and as fully as possible. If you unsure about a particular date, you can always use the 'Yes, if need be' option, i.e. a double tick, to show that you cannot, as yet, commit to a that gig.
Newer members will be given guidance as to which gigs will be suitable for them in the early stages of membership – busking-type gigs are great for first-timers, for example.
For major gigs, (i.e. gigs like The Wolsey, St. Peter's, Dance East, etc. where SSS hire the performance venue and sell tickets for the gig), the expectation is that members will have attended around 75%-80% of rehearsals that term in order to qualify to take part. This must include the final rehearsal with musicians, which usually takes place a few days before the actual gig. If attendance has been significantly less than this, Andi will have the final say about inclusion.
Formal kit , for gigs like concerts, weddings, etc. comprises SSS T-shirts, black formal trousers and black formal shoes.
Informal kit for busking-type & outdoor gigs, etc. - SSS T-shirts, blue jeans, black shoes or trainers & SSS hoodies in cold weather. In hot weather, cropped jeans may be worn, (but not shorts) along with black sandals.
An SSS T-shirt is given to each new member. (This remains the property of SSS and should be returned if a member subsequently leave the choir.) Hoodies can be purchased (current price, around £20). Both can be ordered from Sharon Lee (sops).
Informal kit Formal kit