FAQ’s and Quick Facts

The only thing that’s missing is you!

 

ABOUT US

Encore is the nation’s largest and fastest-growing choral organization for older adults (55+), with affiliates in 7 states. It was begun by Jeanne Kelly in the Washington, DC area as part of the groundbreaking study, “Creativity and Aging.” The study was conducted by the late Dr. Gene Cohen for the NEA, NIH and George Washington University. Encore Creativity, our sister institution in the DC area, currently serves more than 1,200 singers in 21 neighborhood Chorales and “Encore Rocks!” groups.

Jonathan and Sandy Miller brought Encore to the Chicago area in early 2016; Encore Illinois is the independent, not-for-profit, local affiliate of this energetic organization. More than 250 singers are actively participating in our current fall season with Encore Illinois, in seven choirs located in city and suburbs.

Encore dedicates itself to providing an excellent and accessible artistic environment for older adults, 55 and over, who seek arts education and performance opportunities under a professional artist. All are welcome, regardless of experience or ability. We are an IRS 501(c)(3) nonprofit tax-exempt organization.

All Encore programs are conducted by veteran professional artists, who know how to get the most from their Chorale members. All rehearsals begin with physical and vocal warm-ups. So, if you love to sing, come join the excitement, either as a beginner or at an advanced level. This is an excellent way to learn how to develop or improve your musical abilities, meet new friends, and look forward to an exciting performance schedule. We encourage new singers to come and check us out before registering, if that is the most comfortable way to get to know us… but sometimes word of mouth is enough and people just jump right in, thanks to a friend raving about Encore.

Our concerts are always free of charge to the community.

You’re never too old to try something new—and to have the time of your life!

SCHOLARSHIPS

For singers unable to pay the entire tuition for a semester, we make scholarships available to qualified applicants. If you are interested in applying, please send us a confidential e-mail at encoreillinois@gmail.com.

 

HOW DO I SIGN UP?

Click “Register” from the menu to the right. Tuition includes musical direction, sheet music, practice CD, accompanist, the flexibility to attend rehearsals at any Encore Chorale location, and the opportunity to perform in all our concert performances.

DO I HAVE TO PRE-REGISTER?

No. While we prefer pre-registration, you certainly are welcome to sit in on a rehearsal or two before you register. It’s important to know if Encore is a good fit for you. Once you’re ready to sign up, you can do so on this website or in person at rehearsal.

I HAVEN’T SUNG IN A CHOIR IN 30 YEARS. IS THAT OKAY?

Yes! We welcome not only lifelong singers and complete novices to choral singing but also those getting back into choral singing after a long or a short break. Remember, there’s no audition. Just bring yourself and enjoy the experience. We encourage less confident singers to sit near more confident singers so that everyone benefits from the group’s expertise. Your tuition includes a practice CD that singers report is very helpful in learning the music.

I HAVE HEARD ABOUT YOUR CHOIR FOR PEOPLE WITH ALZHEIMER’S AND RELATED DEMENTIAS. WHEN IS THAT PROGRAM BEING OFFERED?

Encore Illinois is currently laying the groundwork for this important new program initative, the Good Memories Encore Chorale. Good Memories is the Chicago-area replication of the pioneering model created by the Giving Voice Initiative (GVI) in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area, (www.givingvoicechorus.org). Good Memories is designed to serve persons with early- to early/mid-stage dementia, along with their care partners, who are living in the community, outside of care facilities.  GVI’s experience has shown that this is the population that is the most socially isolated following a dementia diagnosis. The community that is formed by this choir is a true lifeline for these families.

Our intention is to launch this program in the Gold Coast area in the fall of 2018 with one ensemble. From there we intend to spread it to as many locations in the Chicago area as resources permit. This is an exciting venture for Encore Illinois and has already resulted in an extraordinary network of people willing to help it succeed. If you would like to be one of the people who serves the project as a volunteer or in another capacity, please contact us (contact info is directly below). We would love to hear from you.

HOW DO I GET MORE INFORMATION?

E-mail us at encoreillinois@gmail.com or call 630-441-5157.

Feel free to e-mail or call us with any questions about Encore.

If you’d like to see what is happening in the greater Washington, DC area with Encore, including travel opportunities, head on over to www.encorecreativity.org/ and find out more!

HOW IS ENCORE SUPPORTED?

Encore Illinois is supported by (1) tuition for participation; (2) in-kind donation of space, goods, and services; and (3) financial contributions from those who love us. If you would like to support us financially, including our upcoming choral program for persons with Alzheimer’s and related dementias who sing along with their care partners, called the Good Memories Encore Chorale—please click “Donations” on the menu to the right, or mail a check to Encore Illinois to us at 501 W. Ogden, Suite 6, Hinsdale IL 60521. Foundation and corporate inquiries are welcomed; contact Jonathan Miller, Artistic Director & CEO, at 630-441-5157.

Thanks to all who support us in any way!

Practicing at The Merion in Evanston–our very first rehearsal.