Saturday, September 11, 2010

first choir rehearsal!

Well, Thursday was the first choir rehearsal of the school year! It was extremely excited to have 10 people there, and 5 of them were completely new! (I had done no small amount of recruiting over the past couple weeks!)
However, I was reminded that having such a "new choir" poses some interesting challenges.
In addition to having several new members who truly do not read a bit of music (which I shall certainly work hard at fixing, at least to a minimum amount,) I am constantly reminded that my choir can't read my mind.
Not that they could at the end of last year, when we'd all been working together for a while, but I can tell a distinct difference. There are things that I say, phrases I shoot off, assumptions I make about what they know, that...with a half-new choir, they don't yet know how to read between the lines of what I say. Once we work together for a while, there really is a bit of ...mind reading? going on. It's fun. So, I am now reminded of the new challenges I will have this year. Challenges that I am looking forward to, challenges which will invite me to constantly be evaluating what I'm saying and how it comes across.
Overall, I'm quite excited for this upcoming school year, if Thursdays rehearsal was any indication of things to come. I think that I have a lot that I can teach them, if I can just be alert and creative. While it would be *wonderful* to have a semi-professionally trained choir--a choir that I never had to remind about pure vowels, or explain rhythm; a choir that could sightread perfectly! (sigh), it is always an adventure, and a greater challenge--requiring a greater level of skill! to work with such an inexperienced choir. And even more challenging is working with a choir with such varying skill levels, the difficulty being keeping everyone engaged and yet explaining everything in such a way that everyone can understand.
I hope I'm up for the challenge. :-)

1 comment:

Nate Harburg said...

Mara,
(I don't have your email, so I'm using this avenue of communication)

I found the Paul VI "Jubilateo Deo" chant booklet in both chant and modern notation here:
http://www.ceciliaschola.org/notes/jubilatedeo.html

as well as other chant resources:
http://www.frcoulter.com/presentations/latin-novus-ordo.html

-hope this helps!
Dn. Nate