Wednesday, 11 August 2010
Feel that Beat!
Another lovely day in the North East of England, and still the sun shines. Actually. today has been more of a 'civilization' day, with a trip to a large shopping outlet where I was able to buy all those things which it is impossible to buy in Paradise ! Some new bedding, kitchenware, a pair of mildly sophisticated lamps and numerous other dainties for house and garden!
Tea with J's sister, who, quite apart from singing in our ladies choir of 3 decades ago, also made many of mine and J's evening gowns for concerts. A cleverer seamstress it would be hard to find on a days' march!
Then it was my 'payment for stay' evening. We arrived at the church hall where the vocal ensemble rehearse and straight way got stuck in to a beautiful SSAA choral piece by a Czech composer whom I had the priviledge of knowing quite well, called Antonin Tucapsky. Such a gracious and vibrant piece - I can't remember the title now, as we dissected and then reassembled quite a number of songs this evening, and my short term memory allows me to quickly forget what has gone before!
Being Czech, Tony's music is a wonderful mix of East and West, some luscious harmonies, combined with pingy and edgy rhythmical quirks. We worked hard on each individual line being independent, yet part of the whole.
After travelling through the vocal diversions of romanticism via modern psalm settings we arrived at a jolly and very lively quasi Jewish dancelike song, called something along the lines of Ya Bom - which gives you an idea of the style!
Bearing in mind that all the singers are very old friends/singing colleagues of mine from 'before time as we know it', they manfully take anything I throw at them. They danced, they clapped, they stamped, they looked at me as though I was less than 2 hours from being an inmate at Broadmoor Phsychiatric Unit for Deranged Musicians, but I took no prisoners and by the end they were actually singing like they were enjoying themselves! Hurrah!
The stand-in pianist whom I do not know, was, without doubt, a little sniffy, to say the least about my slightly unothodox approach to choral masterclassing, and, I felt that if she met me on a darkish night, may well cross the road in the hopes that I did not ask her to give us a twirl on the pavement.
The choir sound great, they sing with such a gorgeous, juicy and unified tone.
Now ladies, shake a leg and let go!