Conduct Rehearsals like a Pro with These 4 Essential Ingredients
As worship ministries have evolved over the past few decades, so have rehearsals. The evolution of rehearsals at my church is probably something you and your church can relate to. Once upon a time–if you can imagine it–folks would show up on Sunday AM, the director would pick some hymns out of the hymn book and away they went with an organ, piano & choir leading the way. Fast forward a few years and the planning process became more refined, as did the Sunday morning rehearsal time. As the ministry continued to evolve, the huge leap was made to a mid-week rehearsal; they tucked it away in a time slot right after Wednesday night programming.
That’s where our worship ministry was when I arrived. One of the first changes we made was to move our mid-week rehearsal to a dedicated night…a night when no other regular church programming was going on. For us, that was Thursday. This leant a greater sense of importance to mid-week rehearsal and helped people come focussed on music rather than whatever Wednesday night programming they may have just hailed from. With a dedicated night also came more time which allowed us to be more thorough and creative with our approach.
We’ve continued to tweak the system, making it better where we can. But I’ve found there are a few essential ingredients that have become mainstays and necessities. How we accomplish them matters little. Just that we do. Here they are in hopes they might inspire you to try something new or freshen up something old:
- Time with the band & vocals separate. Having them separate basically keeps them from wasting each other’s time. The band doesn’t have to sit around while the tenor figures out what he’s doing. The vocals don’t have to fall into small talk while the band discusses what went wrong at the break. If you’re not able to rehearse them separately at the same time, I recommend running the band through first. It’s hard to practice singing without solid music to back you up!
- Time with the band & vocals together. Of course, everyone needs to get an idea of what the final product will sound like!
- Time with you. Your vision, your passion, your reminders, your guidance. Don’t miss your chance to pour into your team in person! Teach them important concepts of worship ministry, share with them some background of why you planned the service they way you did, remind them of what you value in your worship ministry.
- Time with God. Missing out on this would be the biggest mistake you could make. Time in scripture and prayer will inspire your team’s worship. And an inspired team will inspire your church! Some nights you might pray for each other, other nights you may sit out in the seats and pray for the congregation in advance, and other times you may just sit and pray in silence. Any way you approach it, time with God is a must!
What’s one thing you love most about your rehearsals?