Study Shows That Singing Is Up, But Choir Programs Are Not

According to a new study just released by Chorus America, an estimated 32.5 million adults sing in choruses today, vs. an estimated 23.5 million in 2003. When children are included in the tally, the number rises to 42.6 million.

This means more than 1 out of every 5 households has at least one family member singing, making this the most popular art form for both adults and children.  On the face of it, this sounds great, doesn’t it?

Yet, there is reason for concern. Very much so.

“While the 2009 study determined there are numerous academic and social benefits resulting from a child’s participation in a chorus…more than one in four educators responded that there is no choir program in their schools. Additionally, more than one in five parents said that there were no choral singing opportunities for their children in their communities.”

My fondest memories of elementary school involve music: singing during the weekly classroom visits from the music teacher, singing during recess with my girl friends, and eventually in the “elite” school glee club.

Then each Spring, all of us, grades 1-6, performed for our parents in the annual Spring Concert. We danced, sang, and played instruments on a curtained stage, gaining experience and confidence along the way. It was so joyful and so special.

I encourage you to take a glance at these current findings, especially if you or your children don’t sing. Afterward, I hope you’ll raise your voice about the need for choruses and music in our schools.

The full report and an executive summary are available online (PDF 2.3M)