How do I join Cantus?
How do I audition?
Remember, EVERYONE gets into Cantus Youth Choirs. And only singers in 8th grade or older need to audition. These auditions can be done live (please check the calendar) or by submitting a video through our Submit Audition form. You can register/join without auditioning first. The purpose of your audition is so we know which group will be the best fit for you.
To audition by video, all you need is a smartphone, tablet, or desktop computer with a web cam and a youtube account. Here’s how you audition:
- Video yourself (or have a friend video you) singing “Happy Birthday Dear Cantus”
- Upload your video to youtube (set the privacy settings as PUBLIC or UNLISTED … if you mark PRIVATE we won’t be able to view it
- Copy the URL to your video (or click the share icon and grab the URL)
- Paste the URL into the SUBMIT AUDITION form
- Fill out the form and hit the SUBMIT button.
To audition in person, please check our calendar for audition dates, or just show up to our first rehearsal and tell a director that you need to audition. We’ll have you sing “Happy Birthday Dear Cantus” or have a student aid record your audition.
What is expected of parents?
- I am expected to pay all tuition and fees on time.
- I am expected to purchase a performance outfit for my singer.
- I am expected to be involved and encourage my singer to do their home practice.
- I am expected to have an email account and check my email weekly and read emails sent by Cantus.
- I understand that my singer and I are expected to remain active for the entire season, and that should we resign, all fees are non-refundable and that we are responsible for all balances.
What is expected of youth?
- I will attend all rehearsals, retreats, dress rehearsals and performances. I understand that I can miss 3 rehearsals per semester.
- I will do my home practice, as assigned.
- I will care for the materials issued to me and pay any fees for lost or excessively damaged materials.
- For older youth: with my parent/guardian’s consent, I will also subscribe to Cantus emails and read them.
I’m nervous about auditions. Will I make it into a choir?
Don’t worry. Everyone who auditions will make it into a choir. The auditions are simply to help us get a better feel for your voice, musical experience and personality. You will be placed in a choir by grade level, and remember, no one is cut!
Can I go on tour?
All Cantus singers are invited to tour, but none are required. Tour costs are separate from your tuition, and the price for tour is published each year in the fall. Cantus parents spearhead fundraisers from time to time, and information about those opportunities will be sent to everyone. You will also want to make sure that you meet the attendance and behavior requirements and successfully complete all assignments given by your choir director.
What will tour be like?
Amazing. You will get to travel with some of your best friends. You will sing in beautiful venues and hear outstanding choirs from across the country. Tour is a wonderful time for making music … we also have a lot of fun along the way, like theme parks and concerts.
My family is going through tough financial times. Is there any help available?
Part of the mission statement of Cantus Youth Choirs is to “enrich the lives of youth from all economic backgrounds.” We partner with individuals and businesses in the community to provide sponsorships. Costs are kept as low as possible. We offer a payment plan for tuition where payments can be broken up into six affordable installments, and discounts are available for siblings. For more information about financial assistance, please contact the Cantus secretary.
Can I play sports or do other activities and still sing in Cantus?
Definitely. We encourage you to be as well-rounded as possible. It just takes good planning and open communication between you, the choir director and your coaches or other activity directors.
What if I don’t know anyone in Cantus? Is it hard to make friends?
Cantus is a great way to meet new people and make new friends. In fact, many youth say that they met their best friends in Cantus! Another way to have friends in the choir is to invite your friends to audition with you! You will share amazing musical and social experiences together, including performing for prestigious events throughout the community! Don’t worry, though. You will develop friendships within the choir that will last a lifetime. Rudy Trevino, a former student has said, “Choir under Mrs. McCauley’s direction wasn’t a group of kids singing, it was a family.” Read more accolades here »
Why should I have vocal training in elementary and middle school? Why can’t I wait until high school?
All singers, male and female, go through what experts call the “adolescent voice change.” The way that you choose to sing during this voice change can affect the way you sing for the rest of your life. The best method to protect, develop and expand your voice is to sing early, often and with close guidance by an expert. By the time you get to high school, you will have a background in the skills you need for a lifetime healthy singing.
Why do I need to practice at home? What if I can’t read music?
We expect the best of the singers in Cantus Youth Choirs. In order for the choirs to perform music that is challenging and engaging, we need every moment of limited rehearsal time to refine the music. We only have one night a week to rehearse, which means that singers need to learn and memorize the music at home. To help, we provide practice recordings. If your singer needs additional assistance, please contact his/her ensemble director.