Monday 30 September 2013

Getting the sound right out in front: a month of rehearsals September 2013

We’re getting back into the swing of things after the summer break. We’ve already performed at two gigs this month, we’ve a few more coming up and we’re getting ready for the North Wales Competition early November. That means some hard work at rehearsals. But we don’t mind that.  It’s good to know we are continuously building on what we know, improving old skills and learning new ones.
Jeff continues to emphasize getting good vowel sounds. We’ve practised not moving our chins, not changing the shape of our mouths and doing all of the work with our tongue and palette. We’ve been shown how to project the sound forward instead of it staying in our nose and throat. That, of course is also helped if we breathe correctly. However, we must not, no we must not indeed, breathe in the wrong places or take great gasping breaths at the beginning of a phrase. Good, controlled breathing is highly desirable.
We’re working quite quickly on a new song, Ave Verum. This can be quite dramatic and also quite solemn. It’s actually harder to get that drama into it before we’ve learned it.  We have to learn it quickly because we are going to perform it at the North Wales competition. We need to present one song in another language and this of course is in Latin.
“It’s easy to learn,” says Jeff. “Apart from the tenor part.”
Ah. In fact in many places there are parts for tenor 1s – sung by the ladies - and tenor 2s – presented by the men.
We continue as well perfecting Here, There and Everywhere, polishing Let’s Do It and keeping the rest of our repertoire in good condition. And we remember not to look at the floor, but to tell the story and to keep our eyes bright. Hard work, this singing. But we enjoy it and we’re convinced it’s good for us.                             

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