On any given day, in towns both large and small, choirs across the country present hundreds of beautiful concerts. While audiences and choir singers alike have long understood the intrinsic value of singing together, the 2009 Chorus Impact Study commissioned by Chorus America also shows us that participation in choirs cultivates positive attributes in singers, which in turn, benefits communities.
Four primary findings emerged from the research:
1. First, an estimated 42.6 million people in the U.S. sing in more than 270,000 choirs today—that’s far more than participate in any other performing art.
The data indicates that singing in a choir is a thriving and growing form of artistic expression in America, and, in addition to providing great musical performances, it can be acknowledged for advancing many of the positive qualities associated with success in life both for children and adults.
2. People who sing in choirs demonstrate characteristics that make them remarkably good citizens.
For example, choir singers are much more likely to be generous by volunteering in their communities and contributing money to philanthropic causes. They’re far more likely to take on leadership roles too, and participate in the political process.
3. The 2009 study also explicitly examined the effects that singing in a choir has on childhood development.
The results show that children who sing in choirs have academic success and valuable life skills. Additionally, both parents and educators (from every discipline) attribute a significant part of a child’s academic success to singing in a choir.
4. There is a troubling decline in singing opportunities for children.
While the research determined there are numerous academic and social benefits resulting from a child’s participation in a choir, it also pointed to an alarming trend suggesting that these opportunities are not available, or are being reduced or eliminated from schools across the country.
–Excerpted from Chorus America