By GALA Expert
August 14, 2023
These sample agreements can be used to create common ground and understanding for conversations and for communities.
Sample Conversation Agreements
These sample agreements can be used to create common ground and understanding before community conversations. Engage your chorus in adapting and creating your own shared agreements.
- Use “I” statements: Speak from your own perspective, and avoid “we” and “they”. Refrain from speaking for others in the community (ie. “I’ve talked to other singers and…”)
- Move up, move back: Speak once and wait for others before you speak again. If you are a person that rarely speaks, challenge yourself to share your thoughts.
- One mic, one diva: Speak one at a time. Listen deeply when not speaking.
- Confidentiality: What’s learned here leaves; what’s shared here stays.
- Difficult or hurtful: Name the hurt in the moment if possible. After the session, reach out with personal and direct communication to follow up with that individual.
- Take care of yourself: Go to the bathroom, get water, leave if needed.
Sample Community Agreements
Use this sample as a starting place to create community agreements within your own chorus. Engage your chorus in adapting and creating your own shared agreements.
- Members of the “Queer Chorus” include its singers, volunteers, and staff. It is each member’s responsibility to uphold the following guidelines:
- Be kind to each other and to others with whom our chorus interacts.
- Be ferociously courageous when defending the rights of, and individuals in, marginalized communities.
- Engage in deep listening, especially when addressing issues of disagreement.
- Address conflict directly with the individual involved rather than talking behind someone’s back.
- Ask for permission to engage in physical touch or personal conversation. This includes sharing other’s personal information, or asking personal questions. Every member is allowed to say “no” or change their mind at any time.
- Embrace equity, access, and belonging even when it is uncomfortable.
- Show tolerance of others when acceptance is not possible.
- Refrain from any bullying or threats of violence.
- Practice stewardship of the earth, water, and environment.
- Be quiet and respectful during rehearsals when the conductor or presenter is talking. This includes announcements.
- Be cognizant that you are representing the Chorus when dressed for performance and/or wearing Chorus promotional clothing.
- Follow chorus policies regarding attendance, chorus dues, interactions with minors, confidentiality, illegal substances, and social media, as outlined in the Singer Handbook.