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Welcome to Ember!

Welcome local friends and folk lovers! I am so excited to convene with you all again for another season of magic and merry-making! To returning members, welcome back, and to folks joining or curious about joining for the first time, I look forward to hearing from you! There are so very few choirs like ours between the coasts, and I think it's so important to cultivate communities of cultural curiosity and exploration in this rural place together. In this group, we value curiosity, listening, generosity, humility, integrity, and giving our best effort over purity, perfection, competition, and being the best. Please read through the class expectations, details, and registration info as you consider joining us!


If you're planning to join us in person, you should be prepared to:


• Learn very challenging, complex, and potentially unfamiliar music with full focus and engagement, including singing in unfamiliar scales, rhythms, and foreign languages 


• Learn and practice new vocal techniques & grow vocally

• Identify as strong singers who can hold a harmony / melody against other parts as a pre-requisite skill, or be committed to enough home practice that holding a part on one's own without the help of other section members is achievable by performances

• Be willing to review material and listen to recordings between choir rehearsals

• Attend choir regularly and prioritize it over optional activities that overlap with rehearsal time

• Because all of our classes are recorded, we expect members to make up missed classes with the online recordings in order to stay up to speed and not hold back group learning

*New for Winter Term*

A private 45 minute one-on-one voice lesson / check in is included in your term registration this semester! If you want to take advantage of this opportunity, you can schedule your lesson with Anni after the new term starts in January.




Winter Semester: 13 Weeks

January 12 - April 6

Thursday Evenings 7 - 9 PM

Nature Nooks Retreat Center

Nature Nooks Retreat is located 13 min drive east of Viroqua, between Viroqua and La Farge. Carpooling will be organized for those who would like to share transportation from town! 

Bass Voices: If you identify as a man OR someone who sings in the bass / lower octave, please check in before signing up. We are by and large a treble group of women and non-binary members with treble voices, and in order to accommodate lower range voices, we have to ensure that we both have enough members in that range and that those members have a high level of skill so as to not throw the group out of sound balance.

While we love little people, this group is a high-focus, demanding experience and is for adults (15+) only.

Community Well-being


Singing is one of the highest risk activities one could partake in when it comes to Covid-19. We are all responsible to our communities, and in order to be able to have the goodness of group singing in our lives whilst protecting vulnerable group members and their families, all must agree to these basic group protocols around Covid in order to join. We are all consenting to a level of risk by attending in-person singing, but we have a serious desire to do the best we can to protect one another while still getting to do the things we love.


• We prefer that in-person members are fully vaccinated for Covid-19, but exceptions are possible if members are willing to abide by the other wellness guidelines

• If a member is experiencing cold/flu symptoms or has a *known primary exposure* to someone who is sick with Covid or with an unknown Covid status, they will join class on  Zoom if well enough to participate

• If a member has a *potential or secondary exposure* to Covid - like, a sick person in your household - we ask that you wear a mask for in-person singing or join on Zoom, even if you have no symptoms of illness.


• In joining this group, you agree to excellent communication around health status and possible exposures if it impacts the group in any way.

*known primary exposure* - Someone you live with, work closely with, or have spent several hours with has tested positive for Covid-19 in the last 5 days or is experiencing symptoms that are very likely Covid.

*potential or secondary exposure* - You spent time with someone who tested positive but were/are outside the window for transmission, or have had close contact with a sick person not sick with Covid-19.



We are very happy to offer this course on a sliding scale basis to our extended community. In the spirit of Folk, we want the material of this course to be as accessible as possible, while also honoring the time, energy, and skill it takes to offer a class like this. 

The sliding scale for local participation is $100 - $250, or between $7 and $20 for each of our 2 hour classes and materials. Please review the Sliding Scale Guidelines before registering to see where you fit.

Members who can pay the full tuition but need to do so in installments are welcome to join the monthly payment plan option! Just send me an email and I can set you up. 


Limited scholarships beyond the supplemented amount of the sliding scale are available for BIPOC and disabled participants.

You are able to drop off cash or a check at my house in Viroqua prior to the class start date or pay via Venmo - @anniezylstra.


If you would like to propose a trade as a substitute for dues, I might love that! Things I love to trade for are -- bodywork, home raised meat, other food staples, farm animals, fruit trees, etc. I trade for goods at the full tuition value of the class.

* Physical space for Ember is limited and Pre-Registration is required to join! * 

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