Director education is paramount to the success of a barbershop chorus. If you have yet to test your arm waving skills or you are a seasoned professional, there are many resources to help you improve.
Spend a Saturday in your area with 4 other directors and 2 visiting trainers to talk about the challenges of directing a volunteer group, rehearsal planning, goals, and then spend your afternoon working with a Joe Barbershop chorus, practicing skills YOU have asked to be worked on. In the history of BHS, this workshop is routinely rated as one of the best programs… period! Think of this a Harmony University, brought to your local area for a day!
Here is one of our finest Harmony University Instructors, taking the time to teach directing skills to a wide range of directors…from first timers who simply want to try “Keep The Whole World Singing” to a director who has been around the block but wants help with gesture and technique. Don’t watch all 16!! Watch 1, work with a group, watch the next one, work with your group. If the level is too low skip ahead.
Watch director Larry start at the most basic concepts in directing and advance to our most advanced. The best way to use these? Watch one, work with the concepts with your group, then watch the next one. Don’t watch all 16… you will explode!
Watch one of these 15 minute videos and get some ideas! Better yet, set up a big screen or projector, and have your chorus try any of our HU warm ups!
Want to become a director?
Basic patterns in directing techniques
How to get started?
Direct one Barberpole Cat per week.
Start with the simple tunes like “Heart of My Heart” (three pattern), “Down Our Way” (one pattern), the choruses of “Wait ’til the Sun Shines, Nellie” (two pattern) and “Honey – Little ‘Lize Medley” (four pattern). Then, begin testing your skills by moving on to more difficult songs with rubato (slightly speeding up or slowing down the tempo at the discretion of the director), such as “The Old Songs”, “My Wild Irish Rose”, and “Sweet and Lovely”.
Become one of the warm up leaders.
Become a section leader
Here are some materials that can help you on your way. Barberpole Cat Songbook and learning materials
Basic Directing Technique Video / DVD (??)
Improving Vocal Techniques through the Warm Up, Stock #4068
Effective Choral Warm Ups Video, Stock #4960
Directing a Barbershop Chorus, Stock #4053
Building a team
Learn basics in music theory
Music Fundamentals, Stock #4034
Theory of Barbershop Harmony, Stock #4037
Barbershop Arranging Manual, Stock #4031
To be able to teach better singing, you must know the ins and outs of the instrument.
Basic Group Singing Techniques
To be able to teach better singing, you must be able to listen.
Sound for Ensemble Singing, Stock #4086
New or experienced directors can learn from the best at HU
Get the full directing experience each summer at Harmony University in Nashville, TN.
Learn conducting techniques, get private lessons in conducting, and sing in a world class directors college chorus.
Learn more about Directors College
Are you looking for a director?
Here is a map of choruses also looking for directors:
Would you like to also place a request on this map for your chorus?
This is a resource for all Barbershop Harmony Society, Sweet Adeline International and Harmony Inc. choruses who are looking for directors.
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Pole Cat Directing Techniques
Below you will see four different directors directing four different songs. This forum is for open discussion on what you see that you like, what you see that can be improved, and ultimately, what level you would place each director in for Directors College (Level 1 (Beginning), Level 2 (Intermediate), or Level 3 (Advanced)). Click here for our criteria we use for Directors College placement. And comment here on this page (that way, you don’t need to have a YouTube account to be able to comment) so we can all follow the discussion. NOTE…best viewed using Internet Explorer or Firefox.