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Quaker by conviction, mother by default, Celticst through love, Christ follower because I once was lost but now am found...

Friday, November 19, 2010

Performance is your reality.  Forget everything else. ~ Harold S. Green.

Ok, I admit it.  Now I'm just a wee bit excited.  Our tickets for the Gothic have arrived.  Despite all the drama & hoo~ha this should be fun ~ as anyone who has watched John Curro in action would know; or maybe not.  Star has worked with him before so at least she knows what to expect. 

So how are they training these kids to sing what is a quite complex classical piece ~ though not, Star assures me, difficult!  Yes, they are going over the piece phrase by phrase but there are other things involved because Alison's stated aim is to turn out working musicians rather than prima donas.

I was highly entertained on Wednesday because Sunday's soloists [we're not doing this one] were practising & one child, fairly new to the group, made the fundamental error of saying she didn't know all her lyrics.  Now, this is a no~no.  Even if it's true you never, ever admit it.  When she foundered she ground to a halt ~ also a no~no.  One by one Alison had the entire choir on its feet to sing this piece ~ a piece only one child actually knew so they had to improvise!  Oh my.  Some did better than others. Star did ok.  She doesn't usually get flustered by sudden hiccups; she drives with me.  One child, who had no idea of the actual lyrics, sang a highly entertaining piece about her maths class!  I was impressed.  She had the tune, she had the metre & she was a line ahead in her head the whole time.

They are doing a lot of sight singing with sol fage.  Sol fage, if you aren't sure, is the hand sign for each note in a scale.  It helps singers remember where to place a note.  I find it fascinating.  Almost all the kids revert to sol fage instinctively when they aren't sure or when learning a new piece.  Sometimes Alison asks them to do it to help put them in the right place musically & it does actually work.  Amazing.

Scales, of course, but those are usually warm up exercises.  Star is singing Altos & the altos are weak.  Good voices but this year they tend to be the more inexperienced singers who tend to falter & be less confident about singing out.  I think they are improving but still a bit shaky.

They also sing counting.  This does my head in just listening to it.  I can't imagine having to do this rather than singing words but it is all about timing.

Oh, & they've had the kids before the cameras just to accustom them.  There will be 10 cameras filming the actual concert, two on the children's choir; one in each stall.  Alison does the camera calls because the cameramen can't read music.  Yes, when I know when the ABC is airing this I'll say.  I am assuming they will air it seeing as they're going to the trouble of filming it.

Poor Star will still be in rehearsal long after they've kicked us out though she may get released long enough for a decent lunch break.  I am hoping to be affluent enough to eat at a decent restaurant rather than some of the rather dicey take~aways at Southbank.  Hopefully ma will be able to join us & we can catch up a bit but she has a long way to come & the train journey home is long & tiring.  Then Liddy & I have to find something to amuse us till Star is released when the final curtain comes down.  Interesting times.

1 comment:

seekingmyLord said...

Exciting! I cannot wait!