Westcoast Harmony Chorus performs its gold-medal winning performance at the Division AA International Harmony Classic in Denver, Colorado, in 2012. (photo: Westcoastsings.com)

MINTY: Sing in spring with Rhayne, or listen in with some Sweet Adelines

Sweet Adelines Regional Convention returns to Surrey theatre this month

SURREY — “Sing your way into Spring, and hear your voice bloom,” trills professional recording artist, Rhayne. A few years ago, Rhayne started a singing class for adults called “Love to Sing,” and these classes were hugely popular, and beginners advanced to performers with confidence in their vocal abilities. The next class for “Love to Sing” is on Wednesday, April 19 at Surrey Arts Centre, from 2 to 4 p.m. To register, phone the City of Surrey registration lines during office hours at 604-501-5100.

Rhayne (and yes, that does rhyme with rain) blends her singing experience with her former nursing background, into a very easy-to-learn method she developed, called the “Rhayne Method.” Even a “non-singer” can learn to sing while learning how to prevent vocal injury. I took her first session, and I can safely say it is taught in a fun, relaxed and enjoyable group setting. The singing skills you will learn in her classes, you can use for a lifetime. Remember, it is never too late to learn a new skill.

Rhayne loves teaching and performing for the community with her students. The advanced singing students from her “Love to Sing” class have been busy performing with her at the dove-release ceremony hosted by Surrey Hospice Society, entertaining seniors at Chartwell Imperial Place, performing for 2017 International Women’s Conference attendees, and will be performing with a smaller group of students at Historic Stewart Farm on Easter weekend.

Don’t be shy, or – worse yet – assume that you cannot sing just because you have never been encouraged to do so. It is daunting to try hitting the “right” note, and it is easy to shrug it off and say you are tone deaf. Not so. Just listen, learn some easy techniques and, before you know it, you will be singing along with the best of them. Whether you are just starting out as a beginner or are a more experienced singer, Rhayne teaches adult group classes for both. Singing in a group can bring great joy into your life, plus the bonus of being a stress reliever. True story. Breathe properly, do physical warmups and relate to the other singers in your group. You can sing.

Then there is the next level of singing. The Sweet Adelines is an international organization of ladies who sing. That is rather simply put, but you get the idea. Once you have confidence in your singing abilities, you might join a chorus and get really serious about singing. There are competitions. The Sweet Adelines Regional Convention will take place in Surrey from April 27 to 29, with choruses and quartets from B.C., Alberta and Saskatchewan. The competition will be held at Fraser Heights’ Chandos Pattison Auditorium – quartets on April 28 at 5 p.m., choruses on April 29 at 11 a.m. Information can be found on the web at Region26.ca, tickets at the door.

Prior to that, get a sneak peek of some of the choruses that will be at Regionals, happening right here in Surrey. This will include Westcoast Harmony Chorus, who are seeking their 13th Regional win (outstanding!), Peace Arch Chorus and Valley Echoes Chorus, plus a couple of quartets. This “Sneak Peek Show” is on Wednesday, April 19 at Shannon Hall in Cloverdale. Doors open at 7 p.m., show at 7:30. Admission by donation.

Westcoast Harmony Chorus director is Anne Downton. She sings baritone in the quartet FRENZY!, the current International Quartet Champions, having won that title at the 2017 international convention and competition in Las Vegas last October. That is a gold medal winner, just like the Olympics.

So there you have it. Sing your way through April showers. You have a choice of starting simple and sing in the shower, or perhaps join a chorus that travels to competitions around the world. Wouldn’t it just be great if the world could actually sing in perfect harmony? Gotta start somewhere.

melminty@telus.net