ONE VOICE CHORUS INC

Rating: 4.82 stars   17 reviews

Issues: Civil Rights, Arts & Culture, Race

Location: P.O. Box 13852 Richmond VA 23225 USA

Mission: The broad cultural and community need addressed in our mission is recovery from the wounds of racism in a city long plagued by separation, enmity and mistrust. Incorporated in April, 2004 as an independent non-profit organization, more than 100 One Voice singers now come from all parts of Richmond and many choirs, including more than 50 churches and the Richmond Symphony Chorus. Our mission is to perform excellent choral music for the community and provide artistic and educational resources to promote the work of racial reconciliation. Through our music, membership and outreach programs, One Voice works toward positive, healing relationships between Americans of African and of European descent. Our vision is to be recognized as a model of the enriching power of choral music to bring together people historically separated by racial tensions. Accepted without audition and without the application of any kind of quota, members of One Voice represent almost exactly the racial balance of metropolitan Richmond. Since 2004, One Voice has performed for diverse audiences of more than 10,500 people.

2010 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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Community Reviews

Rating: 5 stars  

6 people found this review helpful

I have been a member of One Voice Chorus almost since its beginning days. A part of our logo says that we "sing(ing) the beauty and power of diversity," but we do more than that. We sing it, we model it and we embrace it. Singing the various styles of music--classical, jazz, and spirituals-- can sometimes be a challenge, but it's such an enjoyable one! Best of all, however, is working to meet that challenge while sitting amidst a group of folks who genuinely believe in and mirror our mission of racial reconciliation. Our mere presence and interactions at rehearsals and in performances speaks volumes.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

the beautiful friendships that begin in the rehearsal site pews and move on into activities that include invitations to social events at a member's home, lunching/dining out together, taking in a movie or just keeping in touch by phone or email

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

the interactions among members both at rehearsals and in private settings. Mastering difficult music selections and performing them for truly appreciative audiences is also a big plus!

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

professional, organized, cheerful, dedicated and committed. To them, working for the chorus seems to be more an opportunity to advance the mission than an actual job.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

open the eyes and hearts of countless millions of folks from all walks of life to the true beauty and power of diversity. As a result, minds, too, would be opened and the need for governments to legislate equality would be obliterated.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-3-01

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Rating: 5 stars  

2 people found this review helpful

Anyone who sings with one other person understands the joy when their two voices become one, and they know the closeness of their voices brings a closeness of heart. Although we are named One Voice Chorus, we usually sing with our four soprano, alto, tenor, and bass voices. However, as a result of our One Voice, we all dwell in one heart. I leave each rehearsal with greater musical knowledge, an increasing closeness with my fellow tenors, and growing friendships with all my fellow singers. Our conductors, Frank Williams and Glen McCune, remind us always that music is a joy we can never turn back and a joy we return to y’ all who come sing and to y’ all who come listen.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

that I myself profit from my growing friendships and my ever increasing musical knowledge.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

These are the best people in the world ! I hate the wait between the end of a concert and our first rehearsal for the next concert...

Ways to make it better...

there were some specialized singing opportunities, such as pop music, holiday music,annual music for Black History Month, music created for children. and musical presentations that included young singers,for smaller groups of singers of moderate abilities

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

One thing I'd also say is that...

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-11-01

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Rating: 5 stars  

2 people found this review helpful

My wife and I heard One Voice about 6 years ago. I called Glen McCune the next Monday to ask about joining and have been with the group ever since, now on the Board. I love all music, but choral music is my favorite to hear and perform. I'm not blessed with the greatest of voices and the "y'all come" nature of OV is an attraction. However, the mission of promoting racial reconciliation using music as the medium is what drives my passion for the group. If we only represented an opportunity for this reconciliation, we would be performing a great service. To offer that opportunity with truly outstanding music is a blessing beyond compare.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

increased friendships with people I would never have had the opportunity to get to know, appreciate and (yes) love. I've also improved as a singer in both my abilities and my knowledge of the broad range of music we perform.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

enhance the infrastructure. A former Board member has described us as an elephant on a bicycle. We've grown in size and scope faster than we have been able to accomodate financially and organizationally.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

the music, but closely followed by the relationships with other singers in the group. I"ve come to know folks of both European and Afrian-American heritage that I would not have known otherwise.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

unbelievably dedicated and hardworking to fulfill the dual missions of the organization.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

organize a strong, nationwide educational initiative that would create interracial groups that would sing primarily in schools, both inner city and suburban (read, white). The model of collaboration and friendship that OV creates needs wider exposure.

Ways to make it better...

we didn't have to spend so much time worrying about money, venues and the future.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

creating and organizational structure that will support the lofty aims and the increasing size of the group.

One thing I'd also say is that...

One Voice is the thing in my life I most look forward to. My wife has to shush me up from talking about One Voice wherever I am! (Usually because I'm going to ask for money.)

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-2-01

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Rating: 4 stars  

2 people found this review helpful

I have enjoyed this setting for singing, and as a byproduct, developing relationships between races and people from other backgrounds.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

my well being...lower stress level and just feeling more connected with life and relationships.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

sing fewer songs.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

a growing sense of confidence through the singing process.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

Very dedicated, conscientious people.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

focus more upon its outreach and reach more people with its positive and significant message.

Ways to make it better...

because of limited time,we didn't need to focus so much upon advertising and ticket sales.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

fund raising and creating an audience. There is so much competition for people's time. We have to show and convince many why this would be an excellent use of their time.

One thing I'd also say is that...

I love the teaching moments Glen gives, and wish he had time for more.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-2-01

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Rating: 5 stars  

2 people found this review helpful

Singing with One Voice Chorus is the perfect solution for someone like me who loves singing but does not have the voice to participate in a professional group. I find this to be a wonderful group of diverse people who bring the vision of One Voice Chorus to life. I am honored to be part of this group. I know that our concerts are a gift to the community.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

participating in the chorus and support

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

the participants are committed to living the vision of promoting diversity in the Richmond community

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

wonderful!

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

support the arts in Virginia and provide opportunities to those who otherwise would not have them

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-2-01

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Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

Being a part of One Voice Chorus is a remarkable gift -the opportunity to combine my personal beliefs with what I love to do - experience uplifting music and promote racial understanding in Richmond in the company of people whom I genuinely enjoy. Each week as we are reminded to "introduce ourselves to someone we don't know" I see the community I live in reflected in the singers around me. People of different races and religions from all over the city and surrounding communities who might have always remained strangers, I now value and appreciate as friends. This is no ordinary chorus learning simple tunes - we work hard! - under the spirited, dedicated direction of Glen McCune and Frank Williams and the commitment of our board. We are sustained and encouraged by our mission as we strive to bring beauty and brotherhood to all who see the diversity of our faces and hear our single message.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

meeting a cross section of the greater Richmond community, experiencing a wide variety of good music and being introduced to the many different churches around Richmond that we sing in.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

diverse, dedicated, lovers of music and song.

Ways to make it better...

we were not continually on the hunt for funding. As the equivalent of a "small business" we are self supporting in all ways - promotion, staffing, etc. Fortunately we continue to be well motivated.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

One thing I'd also say is that...

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-2-01

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Rating: 5 stars  

2 people found this review helpful

As a former professional singer and arts administrator, I am amazed at the level of musical and organizational excellence achieved by One Voice with non-auditioned singers and a part-time staff. The social mission of racial reconciliation is what makes this chorus so special. Singers are attracted to the group not only because of their love of music, but also their desire to connect with people in a personal, non-threatening way. As we focus on making beautiful music, we become a metaphor for community - very different voices pursuing a common purpose in harmony.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

find a way to have at least one full-time staff person so more opportunities could be pursued.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

getting to know wonderful people I would never have met otherwise.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

be replicated throughout the region and even the country.

Ways to make it better...

concert planning could be done earlier so that underwriting and promotion could be more effective.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

board development and sufficient funding.

One thing I'd also say is that...

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-2-01

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Rating: 5 stars  

2 people found this review helpful

I have been involved with One Voice for five(5) years and I have not sung with any other group that I have enjoyed more than One Voice. The directors are truly patient and encouraging each one of us to strive to learn the music and enoy it in the process. You want to sing you best and put on a great concert for the joy of the audience.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

being able to sing and perform complicated music with a few months rehearsal and I look forward to meeting and rehearsing with One Voice each week.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

all interested in accomplishing the one goal of a great performance of whatever type of music we were doing.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

tour the world and spread the joy of singing to many different countries and, hopefully, enrich the lives of many people.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-12-01

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Rating: 5 stars  

6 people found this review helpful

This choral group of 100+ achieves a socially responsible community mission of bringing together a diverse group of people (different ages, different ethnic backgrounds, different singing abilities!), and provides a gathering place for people to come together to practice and perform great music. At the same time, it provides a comfortable environment where we learn to appreciate other remarkable human beings that we wouldn't ordinarily have the opportunity to know. OneVoice Chorus is a musical gem of a choir, where anyone can join and sing and feel at home.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

improving my singing experience in types of music rehearsed and performed. I've also gained some wonderful new friends.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

It's dedication to its mission which is to focus on its members and serve to enrich the community.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

kind, understanding, generous to a fault. The staff brings a strong professional background to the group's management.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-2-01

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Rating: 5 stars  

2 people found this review helpful

I have been involved in Richmond activities promoting tolerance and dthe values of diversity since i moved here over 38 years ago. I joined One voice several years ago. Singing with this special group has been a joy personally and I often hear from audience members how very important our music is to them and to Richmond as we all work together toward a healthier community.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

practice every week.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

getting to know the people.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-2-01

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