Southside High School Concert Choir

The Southside High School Concert Choir

Southside High School 2361 School Dr, Gadsden, AL 35907 (256) 442-2172

Welcome to the SHS Choir!

Whether you are an experienced veteran of this group or just starting your choral singing career, you are truly in for a great adventure this year! I am so thankful you have chosen to stretch yourself as a musician and a person, and I promise, I will do my utmost to insure that choir is a wonderful experience for you.

For those of you who do not know me yet, my name is Mrs. Alicia Probst, and I will be your director this year. While we might be new to one another, I am not new to choir. I have been singing for as long as I can remember…and much of that singing as a member of various choirs. One of the most gifted musicians I’ve ever known…my mom…was a church choir director for 38 years, and much of what I learned about choral singing as a teenager came from her. After high school, I earned my bachelor’s degree in music education from Berry College, with a concentration in voice. I won a choral conducting contest at the end of my senior year there and was allowed to conduct the most elite choral group at Berry, The Berry Singers, before an audience of hundreds of people. After college, I served as a missionary in South Africa for two years and then went on to Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary to earn a masters degree in theology with an emphasis in worship leadership, vocal and choral studies. I have directed church youth and adult choirs, the concert choir at a previous high school, and two years ago, the concert choir at Brewton-Parker College in Georgia. I do not tell you any of this to boast about my experiences, but hopefully, to give you confidence in your new leader.

I do have a passion for music and so enjoy singing together, but more importantly…I LOVE my students. Any of the hundreds of people I have taught to sing or play instruments over the years will tell you that at the heart of all my music making is friendship and trust. If you will trust me, students, and allow me to stretch your minds (and your vocal cords!) a little, there is no limit to what we can accomplish together. I am so looking forward to getting to know each one of you and watching you grow and make musical memories that will enrich you for the rest of your lives.

At the end of this handbook are a few reply forms. Please read this handbook, then sign and return the Medical Treatment Permission & Release Form, Student Insurance Information Form, and the Handbook Acknowledgement Form. These will be due on August 22, 2014.

Looking forward to an AMAZING year,

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Alicia Probst

Choir Director

Southside High School


The purpose of the concert choir is to promote excellence, in music and personal character and to represent our school with pride through local and regional performances. At this time, the choir is a mixed-voice ensemble for both young men and women. We will explore good vocal technique, sight singing, and many different styles of choral literature. We will perform at least four times this year, both in concert and evaluative settings.


I will frequently post information regarding choir class and related performances on my ECBOE website. I am technically a teacher at Rainbow Middle School, so to access my page, go to and click on the Faculty/Staff tab. Scroll down to Band, and my name will appear. Click on it, and you will be on my page. You may also sign up to receive free texts related to choir using a service called Remind. These texts will be completely secure – I will not be able to see your cell phone number nor you to see mine. I will simply send out occasional reminders about upcoming events. See the back page of this hand book for instructions.


If you can’t find the information you need on the website, contact me by email at


This is very simple! All you need is a black 1.5 inch three-ring binder, a pencil, and a smile! Occasionally, I will ask you to record yourself, find a pitch or tempo, etc. Go ahead and download the following apps (or similar ones) to your devices: Voice Memos, Tiny Piano, and Metronome Free.


While we will rarely have after-school rehearsals, when a rehearsal or performance is scheduled, full participation from all members is expected. Failure to show may be grounds to exclude students from future performances and/or other fun activities. Please keep a close eye on the calendar. I will always do my best to keep you informed well in advance as to dates and times of rehearsals and performances. Be a good team player and be present.


I would love to see you guys wear full concert attire…girls in formal black dresses and guys in tuxedos. We will talk together about this and decide if it is doable financially. If not, we simply wear all black in other forms and think creatively about fund raising toward concert attire for the future.


1.  The choir room is our home and reflects the pride and respect with have for each other and ourselves; therefore we will keep it clean.

2.  All equipment must be stored away safely in its proper place before and after every class.

3.  No food, gum, or drinks are allowed in the choir room.

4.  No cell phone or other device use allowed unless instructed by me.

5.  Rehearsal Etiquette & Podium Courtesy:

a.  Show attention and respect when someone is on the podium.

i.  Yes/No Sir/Ma’am

ii. No talking during instruction

b.  Questions should be directed to the person on the podium.

c.  It is each member’s responsibility to learn their part to the best of his or her ability.

6.  All ECBOE and SHS rules apply at all times.

7.  Poor attitudes are not allowed or tolerated.


Grading in choir class is mostly based on daily participation. This includes coming to class with music, taking full part in the day’s activities, and following all classroom rules. Grading is also partially based on meeting individual singing standards. I observe this (and grade accordingly) by conducting occasional singing tests.


The Alabama Vocal Association provides a series of opportunities for students to excel both individually and in small and large group settings. The highest honor for an individual choir student is to be accepted to the All-State Choir. Auditions for this happen in November, and Mrs. Probst will assist in preparation. This year’s SHS choir, if ready, will participate in and be evaluated at the large-group level in late February. Then in the spring, individuals or small groups may attend Solo and Ensemble, to perform before and receive feedback from qualified judges.



Choir Fee (All Members) $50.00* October 1, 2014

(Defrays cost of music, district event fees, etc.)

*This can be broken up into two payments, one per semester, at the parents’ request.

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SHS Choir Uniform (All Members) We will discuss this and decide together

All fees must be made payable to Southside High School. Please submit each payment in a sealed envelope, with name, and what the payment is for clearly printed on it. Your check must have your name on it and what you are paying for.


In compliance with the Alabama State Department of Education, we cannot issue any medication to any student unless the parent has completed the medical release forms and provides unopened bottles of the medicine needed. Prescriptions must be accompanied by a doctor issued note. Serious health issues may require the parent to accompany the child on band events. Medical release forms are included in the back of the handbook.


Due by August 22, 2014

(Student’s name) has my permission to participate in all trips and activities of the Southside High School Choir.

I authorize the Southside High School Choir Director and chaperones to administer any emergency treatment necessary to insure the safety and welfare of my child on any trip or activity. I release and hold harmless the Etowah County Board of Education, Southside High School, all sponsors, instructors and chaperones of all liability from the treatment of my child during any choir trip or activity.





Student Insurance Information

Student’s Full Name: ______Student’s Age: ______

Parent/Guardian Names: ______

Parent/Guardian Home Telephone: ______

Parent/Guardian Work Number: Mother: ______Father: ______

Parent/Guardian Cell Number: Mother: ______Father: ______

Family Insurance Company: ______

Group Number: ______

Family Physician: ______Physicians Number: ______

Note any special medical condition that we need to be aware of:



Medication student is currently taking:



Date of last tetanus shot: ______

Medication to which student is allergic:


Emergency Telephone Numbers: ______


Due by August 22, 2014

“We, the undersigned student and parent, acknowledge that we have completely read the Southside High School Choir Handbook and agree to follow the policies and procedures described within.”

Student’s Name (print):

Parent’s Name (print):

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