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

Monday, February 27, 2012

It is my belief that everything you need to know about the world can be learned in a church choir. ~ Connie Willis.

I'm not sure how it happened but I am singing with one of Alison's choirs.  We are rehearsing Monday nights.  Star is happily adding up all her driving hours.

There have been big changes with Star's music this year.  There has been a change of rehearsal venue.  There has been  a culling of Star's choir.  This has meant more professionalism & closed rehearsals.  I cannot gripe, not really ~ I got to sit in rehearsals for years & years, but I am going to any way because like it or not I am still carting Star round & I have to be there ~ but now I can no longer sit in on rehearsals.  I cannot afford the movies every week ~ or the coffee shop.  The library is shut & I'm not a window shopper.  I'm not a chatterer either so hob~nobbing with other dispossessed parents is not my thing either. Which means I sit.  I read a lot but the new venue is noisy & not to put too fine a point on it I am bored out of my tiny Celtic mind. 

Still it's once a week.  I figured I could survive once a week.  Eight months & counting down ~ then Star is on her own.  Then Star got her invite for Alison's community choir.  According to Star, if she had her drathers she would do music, music, music & nothing but music till the skies fell & the seas overflowed the dry land.  I didn't even have to ask to know that Star would want to do this too.  I ummmed.  I Ahed.  I dithered.  So good at the dithering.  I asked her to let me think about it because the thought of sitting for more hours in a draughty auditorium cooling my heels when I should be snuggled up in bed with my cats did absolutely nothing for me at all.  I can do rehearsals.  I'm a little quirky that way.  Rehearsals fascinate me.  Watching a maestro pull something amazing from nothing at all constitutes a minor miracle in my book.

Then I got an invite too.  And now I will let you into a little secret.  Auditions have been going on for months but I have never once auditioned for Alison.  Sssssshhh.  I'm not convinced she's ever even heard me sing ~ though I have sung in her impromptu choirs before.  So if I get to play in Star's sandpit it is a whole 'nother ball game 'cause I get to have some fun too ~ so we said Yes!

I really should think these things through better.  I said yes ~ but my music reading is dodgy.  I know what the notes say but I do not hear them in my head the way Star does. I can get my alto & soprano lines muddled.   I have no sense of rhythm & it took me ages to figure out I was having trouble with my timing because we were singing in 3/4 not 4/4.  I really should not be let loose in these things. 

I had trouble from the word go.  I have a limited range.  I can't hit anything in the top four octaves when doing warm ups.  I know that so just open my mouth.  No sound is allowed to emerge.  Then everyone else, who have done QPAC with Alison, moved into their sections. *sigh*  Star sings bottom altos.  I know I can't get down there.  Obviously not a bass ~ or even a tenor.  Nothing on earth would have got me headed towards the soprano section so by a process of elimination I'm singing 1st altos.  This is where my voice seems to sit best but harmony is for musicians.  I'm not a musician.  My head wants to sing the melody line. The music only tells me it's going up or down; I cannot hear it in my head so thanked the Lord quietly that the young woman next to me seemed to have a really good idea of what she was doing & a nice strong voice for me to pitch against! Whew.  Survived!

Have a listen; We are singing this:


Ruby said...

Good for you! You'll be splendiferous!!

Joluise said...


Julie said...

That was hauntingly beautiful. The hair stood up on my neck. I would buy a CD of such music. Good for you - "adding to the beauty" - that's what you're all doing. xxooo

Ganeida said...

Ruby: Such confidence! I ♥ friends like you!

Jo: Thank you; I will.

Julie: Alison always chooses lovely repetoire & plenty of variety but this is just sooo beautifu!

Megan said...

That is a lovely piece, quite beautiful. I used to dabble in singing, though it seems these days you are doing much more than "dabbling". How wonderful to be able to share this experience with Star! I never did have a knack for reading music, but a good ear and good set of pipes helped a lot in my choir days. I loved the quote at the beginning of your post, so true, so true. I have also found the quote,"when Satan fell, he landed in the church choir loft" to sometimes be true as well!;) Enjoy making beautiful music, it feeds the soul of the world!

Anonymous said...

I sing just like you! I find it help me if I am smack in the middle of the altos and I can't hear anyone else. This is often a problem. I am just over 5 feet tall and I often, very often, get moved to the front with the short people.

Ganeida said...

Megan: the Lord blesses me so much through my children. When my Liddy was into soccer we played a bit on the island together. It's been singing with Star & I must admit the arts are much more my thing [despite a fair amount of cynicism about the whole thing these days]. So much lovely music in the world.

butomysoul. Hi! Nice to *meet* you. Yes! So glad I'm not the only one. PLonk in the middle of the altos so that's all I hear will be good! ☺ I have found that my listening ear has improved enormously through hearing Star's choir rehearse for years on end but I still can't translate what I know into the correct sound. :(

joyfulmum said...

I'm with Ruby :)you'll do great! Plus it beats sitting around :)