Off the Risers: Life as a Singer 9/9/2014
Last night’s rehearsal was a fun and eclectic mix, from Eric Whitacre’s imagination-stirring Leonardo Dreams of His Flying Machine to the bright exhuberance of Shawn Kirchner’s Unclouded Day, but it was the Renaissance phrasings of the William Byrd’s Agnus Dei that were one of the biggest surprises. Matt had sketched some parts up on the musical staff lines engraved on our rehearsal room’s chalkboard. Amongst the usual notes were some cryptic other symbols– ‘P’, ‘S’ and ‘R’ along with some joined lines vertically linking some of the pitches. What on earth…? Then I started singing the notes in the alto line and suddenly it all made sense: ‘Preparation’, ‘Suspension’, and ‘Resolution’ were my guesses. Turns out I was right. What was amazing, though, is what happened when those little signposts were applied by the whole choir. It was like going from the black and white tones of Dorothy Gale’s Kansas into the vibrant colors of Oz. The piece just came alive.
It’s an exciting start to our 11th season. With jubilant texts, soaring lines, and phrasing to make the heart sing. Game on!