Thinking of Joining a Choir?

Welcome to the Bytown Voices Community Choir Information Page for enquiring, potential members.

Congratulations. Singing in a choir can be wonderful for your health and your spirit.  If you are thinking of joining our choir, this page should help you make your decision, whether you have been singing all your life, are thinking of joining after many years of not singing or have never sung in a choir.

Who Can Join? We welcome anyone who loves singing or wants to learn to sing. Sight reading skills are useful but not required. Come with a positive attitude and willingness to work cooperatively with choir members and our director of music. We provide lots of tools to help you learn your music.

When can you join? We welcome new members in September and January each year. Test us out. Before you decide Bytown Voices is right for you, come and sing with us for a week or two. Meet the director of music and some choir members. Then we will collect your registration fee.  But don’t be shy - we welcome observers any time.

How much does it cost? Choir fees are $95 per term: Fall term is September to December; Spring Term is January to the beginning of May.  Your sheet music is loaned to you for the term; MIDI computer files, video files and YouTube links to assist you with your home practice are supplied free with your membership fee.

What do you need to bring to practice?  Just a binder for your music, water to drink and a soft pencil to mark up your music. We ask that you erase the markings before turning it back to the music librarian at the end of each term.

What kind of choir is Bytown Voices? Bytown Voices is a non-audition community mixed choir made up of more than 60 enthusiastic singers from across the Ottawa region. Non-audition means you do not to have to audition to join our choir.  It is called an SATB choir which means we have Sopranos, Altos, Tenors and Basses. We practice once a week on Tuesdays from 7:30 pm to 9:30 pm at St. Basil’s Church, and we perform two concerts a year and two outreach performances at seniors’ residences, long-term care facilities; sometimes we sing with other choirs. See the link at the end of this article for a complete list of our 20 year repertoire starting in 1999. 

Check out some other pages on the website to see programs from recent concerts and
hear samplers of our performances on our home page.

What we strive for: Bytown Voices seeks to offer an engaging program that balances a variety of musical genres with the capabilities of the singers. We constantly try to nurture an enjoyable practice environment making all members (and especially new members) feel welcome and included. We want to be a confident and dynamic community choir where members enjoy singing with one another. We also want to facilitate the learning of music, provide a variety of training opportunities and help members cultivate good singing habits.   

How do I get more information?  Send an email with your questions to and someone will get back to you promptly.

Bytown Voices history: In 1999 when the Glebe Singers became a women's choir, several of the members approached Ann McNamee, the accompanist, to form a new choir - and the Bytown Voices community choir was born. Ms McNamee was followed by Bob Jones, who served as director of music from 2004 to June 2015. In August 2015, Joan Fearnley assumed the position as Director of Music with Carla Klassen as accompanist. The Bytown Voices has been performing continuously since 1999. For a complete history click here. 

April 12, 2017; Rev March 23, 2020

The Uplifting Power of Singing.  Article from Globe and Mail (Dec . 10, 2018)

Bytown Voices 20 year Music List from 1999 to 2019 (April)

free templates