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FAQ

Related Links:
Boychoir Fact Sheet (PDF, updated September 2014)

What is the difference between the choirs?

Comprised of our youngest and newer singers, Cantar (7-9) and Cantando (9-12) function as the training choirs. These developing singers, ages seven to twelve, rehearse once a week with emphasis placed on the basics of singing: posture, breathing, tone production, and reading music. As Cantar and Cantando members grow older, they continue to hone their singing and musical skills.

Participation in Cantabile is reserved for choirboys ages nine to fourteen who demonstrate high levels of musicianship, leadership, responsibility, discipline and commitment. Our most visible choir, Cantabile rehearses twice a week and performs at well over twenty events during the season, singing music in a wide variety of styles and languages.

Graduates of the Boychoir program ages fourteen to eighteen are invited to sing in Allegro. They perform music for changed voices and collaborate with the Boychoir trebles, increasing the variety and range of repertoire available to the ensembles.

The Cantabile ensemble demands a big commitment from both the boy and his parents. All of the music performed by the choir is memorized, and the choir sings repertoire in many different languages. Boys need to practice their music at home in order to be prepared for rehearsals. Attendance at rehearsals and concerts is mandatory; without full participation from its members, the choir is only as good as its least prepared singer. For all of the intensity and demands of the choirs, the boys form very close bonds with each other and the staff, and they learn a tremendous amount from this exciting and rewarding experience. Placement in the choirs is entirely at the discretion of the Artistic Director and changes may happen at any time during the concert season.

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Where does the choir sing?

The Minnesota Boychoir performs up to 30 concerts a year. They perform major concerts each year in December and May. They sing two school concert series, once in the late fall and once in the spring, performing at four or five schools in each of those two days. The choir has also performed with the Minnesota Orchestra, the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, the Minnesota Opera, the Baltimore Symphony, the Prague Philharmonic, and at numerous professional, religious, musical and sports events. The Minnesota Boychoir also undertakes concert tours and has thrilled audiences in England, France, Costa Rica, Norway, New Zealand, Canada, Australia, Alaska, Italy and throughout this country. Read our tour blogs.

Interested in having the choir perform at your event? Contact us!

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When does the choir practice?

Cantabile rehearses twice a week on Tuesdays from 7:00 until 9:00 pm and Saturdays from 9:30 until 11:30 am. Cantar rehearses once a week on Thursdays from 6:00 until 7:30pm. Cantando rehearses once a week on Thursdays from 6:30 until 8:00pm.

All choirs rehearse at Concordia University in the Fine Arts Building, located on Hamline Avenue just south of Interstate 94 in Saint Paul. 

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How old does my son need to be to audition?

Boys who are 7-14 years-old (first through eighth grades) may audition for membership in the Boychoir. No preparation is necessary. Each audition lasts about 20 minutes and consists of an interview, a test of the boy’s singing range, tonal memory and pitch matching. 

Important qualities for a prospective member include an interest in and aptitude for music and willingness on the part of the boy and his family to make a serious commitment to the choir and its expectations. Learn more about upcoming auditions.

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What are tuition costs?

Boys pay a comprehensive tuition fee each season. Tuition helps to pay for staff salaries, music, administrative expenses, and other organizational costs, and also covers specific individual expenses, like choir retreats, photos, and some required clothing. Families pay for their boy's uniform, which can be purchased new through the choir or used in a uniform exchange with other choir families. Families are not required to purchase music, which is supplied by the choir.

For the 2016-2017 season, Cantabile tuition is $1440 per year and includes expenses and costs related to their large commitment. Cantar and Cantando tuition is $880. There is also a fundraising obligation of $200 for Cantabile and $100 for Cantar and Cantando members. We are very committed to help make the Minnesota Boychoir experience available to all interested boys. Scholarships are available.

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How can I support the Boychoir?

Find information on our Support page.

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How can I find out more?

  • Call the choir office at (651) 292-3219 to get more information, schedule a visit or an audition, and have your questions answered. We can put you in touch with choir families who may live in your area, or who can tell you about their experiences with the Minnesota Boychoir.
  • Come to a rehearsal, concert, or other performance of the choir, which will give you a good feel for the choir, its staff, and the experience. All of our rehearsals are open to prospective members, music teachers, music students, and others who might be interested.

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