FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

What is the difference between the VOC and the VPOPS?
The VOC (Vancouver Orchestra Club) and VPOPS (Vancouver Pops) is one and the same. The name VOC was commonly used during the early development of the organization from 2009-2014. In 2015, as the VOC evolved into doing more performances locally and abroad, there was a need to have a proper "stage name". Hence, the VOC adopted the new name, "Vancouver Pops" as a designation for many of its performing ensembles. Today, the two remain synonymous and can be used interchangeably, however, the 'VOC' is commonly used when referring to the hosting organization, where as the 'VPOPS' is commonly used to refer to the performing ensembles/members. 

What is the difference between the Standard Term, and the Accelerated Term?
VPOPS currently offers two different tracks for members to take when joining the Symphony Orchestra or Concert Choir. Both tracks cover the exact same material, and perform at the same concerts. The Standard term runs for 3. 5 months, with 12+ weeks of rehearsals, 2 hours every Monday. The Accelerated term hosts 3 hour rehearsals every Sunday, with only 6 weeks of preparation, plus 3 final sessions of combined rehearsals with on Mondays. Ultimately both groups reach the same goals, but the accelerated term does it in half the time. We offer two rehearsal times to give members flexibility to attend either, or both nights of rehearsals. It also allows members extended periods in their calendar to book travel plans without forfeiting commitment to the ensemble. There are no extra costs to attend both rehearsals, in fact it is highly encouraged. Principal seats and solo parts will be selected by audition.

What kind of music do you play?
We play music from Hollywood, Disney, Broadway, Jazz, and Popular Vocal Genres. We also touch on light Classical music, mostly from the 18th-20th century. Occasionally, we perform original works written by recent composers and artists. 

How often do you have concerts?
VPOPS itself hosts at least 5-6 major concerts each year. However, there are a number of other smaller performances that happen throughout the year that may be sponsored or hosted by other organizations.

What is the age group of your classes and ensembles?
The average age of the advanced level ensembles sits around 25 years old, but the range extends from 13 - 65 years old. Registrants are recommended to be at least 14 years old to join, although exceptions may be made after a couple trial rehearsals. We are a friendly community, and all who love music will feel welcomed here! Beginner level classes are appropriate for students as young as 10 years old. 

Do you accept beginners?
Yes. At the VPOPS, we have a multi-level program that is designed to accurately meet everyone's learning curve. The beginner level is geared towards those with less than 2 years of experience. These sessions will provide instruction in the areas of basic music notation, rhythm, intonation and playing technique.  For those who have had past experience with music, but are not fully confident in their skill and knowledge level, our intermediate level classes are available to perfect playing technique, range flexibility, endurance, and execution of complex rhythms. As members progress, they will eventually graduate into the advanced level ensemble, which provide previously trained musicians a challenging, demanding, and fast-paced program to further their skill, technique, and musicality in an exciting performance-oriented environment.

What happens if I miss a rehearsal?
We allow members up to 2 properly excused absences in each term. To be able to perform confidently with a high level of quality, it will require dedication, lots of practice, and training. Hence, we conduct interviews/auditions before we officially approve an individual to perform in concert. If you know you will be missing many rehearsals, it may be a better option to apply for the bronze membership without performing in concerts. If there are any concerns about commitment, it can be discussed at the interview/audition.  

What makes VPOPS unique from other organizations or community groups?
On the surface, our goal towards music and art is common to most other community orchestras, bands, or choirs. However, the VPOPS differs in that we aim to do more than the average ensemble. We provide spacious and equipped facilities, attain higher instructor to student ratios, and provide quality performance opportunities that normally would not be available to recreational musicians. In addition, because VPOPS is made up of multiple ensemble groups, we have many opportunities to collaborate together musically on stage. To make VPOPS a truly unique offering, we include frequent audio and video recording sessions each season so that members can experience what it's like to be a musician in a professional music production. Ultimately, the VPOPS is also a place where one can make new friends, become part of the VPOPS family, and build lasting relationships with other musicians. At the VPOPS, we also strive to establish a safe and inviting social community where both locals and international visitors can connect.Words can only express so much. You have to come and see for yourself! 

REFUND POLICIES
Membership fees are only refundable within 14 days of payment or within the first 14 days of the *term. Refunds are not issued if sheet music is not returned within the same 14 day period. Refunds are also not issued if registrants fail to attend weekly sessions or meet performance standards in the term registered. Refunds are not issued if registrants decide to quit in the middle of the term due to personal unforeseen circumstances.