Repertoire & Standards Statement of Philosophy

The Wisconsin Choral Directors Association represents a diverse group of choral musicians in our state: music educators from the elementary to the collegiate level, church musicians, community choir leaders, and friends and lovers of choral music. As advocates for excellence in all aspects of the choral art, WCDA introduces the following standards as an evolving set of guidelines for its members and their many constituencies.

We consider that choral conducting is an art, and that outstanding results can be produced by a variety of personal styles and techniques. We also recognize the diversity of settings in which our members practice their craft, and have attempted to allow for the musical goals of choral directors in a variety of circumstances. Thus, the standards set objectives for our membership, not expectations. They are intended to be encouraging rather than prescriptive. Above all, they are designed to allow the WCDA membership to bring the joy of excellent music making and the rewards of lifelong singing to the entire community.

The Wisconsin Choral Directors Association encourages in its members:

Standards of Music Selection

  • Commitment to finding and presenting pieces that are high quality examples of a particular musical style.
  • Commitment to selecting music that is appropriate to the age and proficiency of the ensemble.
  • Commitment to achieving a balance between music that has stood the test of time and various styles of contemporary music.
  • Commitment to exploring choral contributions of the many cultures of the world.
  • Commitment to encouraging the composition of quality choral music.

Standards of Vocal Production

  • Commitment to understanding the functions of the vocal mechanism and characteristics of the voice.
  • Commitment to providing instruction in healthy vocal production and the art of singing.
  • Commitment to encouraging a healthy singing voice for singers of all ages, and to promote the joy and rewards of lifelong singing.

Standards of Rehearsal

  • Commitment to excellence in vocal production, musicianship and musical expression.
  • Commitment to having singers involved in a variety of activities at each rehearsal.
  • Commitment to training singers to be independent musicians.
  • Commitment to fostering a positive sense of community and communication between ensemble members.
  • Commitment to rehearsal schedules that place reasonable demands on participants.

Standards of Performance

  • Commitment to achieving the highest performance proficiency possible.
  • Commitment to performances that communicate effectively and are enjoyable, educational and entertaining.
  • Commitment to variety in performance format, accompaniments and repertoire.
  • Commitment to performing for and with other arts organizations.
  • Commitment to performance schedules that place reasonable demands on participants.

Standards of Community Outreach

  • Commitment to sharing musical experiences with local arts and educational organizations.
  • Commitment to advocacy for local arts institutions and arts education programs.
  • Commitment to developing strategies for involving the entire community in singing.

Standards of Professionalism

  • Commitment to continuing professional development in the areas of instruction, conducting, singing, and interpretive skills.
  • Commitment to developing healthy and respectful relationships and leadership styles.
  • Commitment to ethical business practices.
  • Commitment to local, state, and national professional arts organizations and institutions.
  • Commitment to working within the constraints of current copyright laws.