Thank you again to everybody who negotiated the change of venue – apologies for the short notice.
Next week (24th) is in the Methodist Chapel, then hopefully back in school after that……
We had an excellent rehearsal in the Church Parish Rooms and many people commented on what a fine venue it is for our practice!
Handel O praise the Lord (opening chorus): Good progress here. We established some basic ‘rules’ to be applied:
- All endings to be full length unless you are singing immediately after – e.g. p/4 basses 3 bars after fig. B and sopranos p/6 at fig. C
- Opening phrase (and when it reappears) – bold singing, separating each note to make the statement ‘imperative’ rather than a ‘suggestion’!
- …and magnify… (starting at 7 after fig. A) – make this lighter, with no breath or break on the runs for ‘magnify’
- Let all the servants… (fig. D) legato. We did not work in this section much and will return to it on 31.01.18
Vivaldi Et in terra pax
- We had a thorough work out of the LATIN VOWELS (Pure and with no English diphthongs!). There are only 5 sounds – Eh, Ee, Ah, O, and Ooh – mouths should stay in the same shape as much as possible apart from ‘ooh’ when the lips come forward. REALLY important that these are consistently applied otherwise we don’t sound like a choir!
- Consonants – Letter ‘t’ should not be anglicised and ‘splashy’ or ‘wet’ – aim for a ‘dry’ sound half way between a ‘t’ and a ‘d’. Consonants should always be strong but get off them and onto the vowel asap – don’t linger! E.g. bonae voluntatis – there is a different vowel sound after each consonant so the mouth (and the tongue) has to move somewhere 🙂
- The singing must always be gentle but sustained with a quiet intensity, growing and decaying through the phrases – heading for the word ‘pax’ each time
We experimented with a crescendo and diminuendo from bar 76 (tenor entry) to the end with no direction from me; each voice part decided where they think the climax of their lines is and headed for it. It was pretty much unanimous and the effect was magical. Vivaldi has done the work for us, we just need to be aware, listen and approach it musically and it works!
Tuning was not brilliant but this will come when we have mastered the style and identified what the obstacles are and how to overcome them.
Domine fili: We sang through this to scat syllables and enjoyed sounding like wannabe Swingle Singers. The sound had a great energy and will get us to the appropriate ‘groove’ before we add the words – more work on this next week when we need to sort out some awkward key changes. There was also an examination of bars 35-37 and why this cadence (ending or close of the phrase) is called a HEMIOLA. This discussion continued until about 11.30 in The Chequers….. Bernard and I might demonstrate this musically next week….
Saturday 10 March pm– Music Festival Choral Class. We will be entering and will sing some items from the current programme.
Sunday 18 March 10.00-4.00 – Bloxham ‘Come along and sing’ featuring the Vivaldi, to be held at Bloxham School. I would like us to support this and in return singers from the school will attend our Singday in June. If interested please email Director of Music Alex Redpath at firstname.lastname@example.org
Tuesday 20 March 5.30 dress rehearsal; 7.30 Gala concert including the Vivaldi, in St Mary’s Church Bloxham
Saturday 16 June 10.00-4.00 – Chipping Norton Singday featuring Bob Chilcott’s The Voyage, Vivaldi Gloria and other pieces. Concert at 5.30 in St Mary’s Church CN. This is a joint venture with North Cotswold Chamber Choir, Bloxham School and students from King Edward VI School, Stratford.
CNCS will have three rehearsals for this after the May 12 Concert in Witney – dates to be confirmed
What we will do on 24.01.18
Sing the Verdi if the copies have arrived
Vivaldi opening movement and Domine Fili again and Domine Deus
Handel Let all the earth