I joined a new choir. A proper choir. One where the singers have pedigree and credentials like Ulster Operatic and Belfast Phil.
I was invited to join as they needed a tenor. I'm not sure if the guy who invited me to join actually explained to the rest of the choir exactly what he had invited to join the tenor section before I arrived on the scene, but certainly, to say some of the members didn't quite know what to make of me is an under-exaggeration!
For example, the night I first appeared, one of the ladies looked me up and down and then asked, as a tenor, would I be singing alto? Well no, as a tenor, I'd be singing tenor. If I could sing alto, I wouldn't be a tenor.
Then arose the tricky predicament of what to wear at concerts. The men, I was told, all wore dinner jackets and bow ties, and the ladies wore black trousers and tops. Would I be wearing the same as the men? Well, as my mouth hung open and the guy who invited me smothered his giggles at the very idea, the ladies concerned continued to discuss my wardrobe situation and concluded it would be better if I dressed like the ladies.
Although there was some discussion about my hair.
So, that decided, I was then given very clear instructions as to what exactly I should wear ... smart, that's smart, as in classy; the type you would wear out for a meal smart, black trousers. I think I got the message, but I took my mother with me when I went to buy them, just in case. (I was also requested to bring my smart black trousers to a practice so they could be scrutinised to establish if they were indeed smart enough.)
My husband and my mother have come to the conclusion they think I am a 'woman who likes to wear comfortable shoes'.
Then there is the issue of how I mark my music copies. With a pink highlighter. You see, I don't really read music, at least not fast enough to be able to sing it at the same time. But I like to highlight my part so I know when to sing and when not to sing, basically. What I wasn't aware of at the time is that this choir actually perform with copy, whereas my other singing fraternity do not under any circumstances allow you to have copy at performances so you can highlight, write, draw, doodle and make paper aeroplanes out of your music if you wish.
Having said all that, I have been made to feel very welcome, and am enjoying the singing very much. First gig in a fortnight. Sorry, performance ;-) Watch this space ...