creative thank-you for choir members?
March 5, 2009 6:42 AM   Subscribe

An imaginative thank you for my choir members?

My choir (about which I asked a previous question) is about to do its final two concerts of the "season" this coming week. They have been a fantastic bunch, incredibly hard-working and committed, and we've had a ball together. Despite having planned on doing only two concerts this year, the numerous invitations we have received to perform have tripled that. The choir has stepped up to the plate admirably to take on these extra performances.

The choir launched this past September, so they are a very, very new ensemble. They sing primarily Celtic music, in both English and in four of the six Celtic languages. Some people joined in the middle of the year, and have picked up the music and been ready for performance in as little as two weeks. So, as you can see, I have thrown a lot at them, and they've done an amazing job.

I'd like to do something for them as a thank you, for all the aforementioned great work they've done this season. Hive Mind, help me think of a creative thank-you that my choir members will appreciate!

P.S.: I do plan on actally *telling* them all this, so thank you in advance for that suggestion, but I'm looking for things I can *do* for them.
posted by LN to Human Relations (5 answers total)
Their own song, that will belong to the choir, that they can sing together whenever alumnae return to visit. You can write it or commission a local / special-to-them composer to write it.

I do not know how much this would cost, or whether the time involved would be prohibitive, but it would be very special and would be a gift that renews itself for many years.

Other idea: have a professional quality photo made of them, and give them each a copy with a message from you printed below. If funds are tight, you can do this with a decent printer and some really good photo paper and Photoshop.
posted by amtho at 6:53 AM on March 5, 2009

My band has a holiday party after our last concert of the Christmas season, which is a nice way to wrap up the year (we perform several holiday concerts, as well as extensively during the summer, and a "big" concert in the spring and fall). For the past few years this party has been held at an Italian restaurant near the concert venue, where we rent out pretty much the entire dining room; a selection of appetizers, family-style entrees, and desserts are served; and there is no charge for band members (the party is covered from our band fund). This party is really appreciated and looked forward to by the band members.
posted by LolaGeek at 6:54 AM on March 5, 2009

My thoughts are in the keepsake direction- I've kept small things from orchestra like this.
- a small pin/tieclip in a celtic design that they could wear during performances
- a book on history of celtic music or similar topic
- recording of your final concert
- a commissioned piece; I'd suggest asking around a nearby university for a composition student willing to take it on. There's always a couple of talented students in the bunch, and from my experience with those folks I'm absolutely positive someone would be willing to do it for you in return for being able to put a "commissioned piece for xxxx, premiered xxxx" on their resume before they've even graduated. You've got something to offer in return, and taking that into consideration I'm sure they'd be willing to adjust their fee.

This group sounds like an incredible undertaking, and thanks for doing your part to promote languages that are on their way to disappearing!
posted by variella at 8:28 AM on March 5, 2009

It sounds like your group got a lot out of this - congrats on a successful coaching experience.

Seconding a recording of the concert - you could easily rent microphones or hire someone to set them up for you.

Make a speech in front of the audience during your final performance; boast about how hard they worked, how much they learned, how committed and skilled they are, etc. Everyone loves to hear that.

You could also invite them over for a party during the down-season. Organize a get-together - if cost is a concern, make it a potluck and you supply the booze! (or whatever). This will get them riled up for next year, encourage friendships between those who may be too shy to take the initiative on their own and remind them why they participate in the first place.
posted by cranberrymonger at 6:22 PM on March 5, 2009

Response by poster: Some follow-up:

We had our big concert yesterday night, at the official opening of Irish week. I made sure to praise them (essentially say everything I said above) to the audience. And boy, were they ON. They sang as one voice, and there were ten of them.

Thanks so much for the suggestions! I love the idea of a commissioned piece, and will probably do that for the summer. For the short term, I like cranberrymonger's idea of a party.

Thanks for all your suggestions!
posted by LN at 5:53 AM on March 11, 2009

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