Welcome to Renate's Baton. This blog is mostly for and about my choir, The York Region Community Choir.

But, While I'm holding the baton, I'm in charge. So, if I want to talk about other parts of my life, I will. :)

The choir itself is a community and I'm discovering that we have a lot in common with one another besides our love of music and singing.

When I go off on a tangent, there is always a crowd coming along. Join us!

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

YRCC Rehearsal 12-FEB-2018

We had a Valentine's Day sweet feast! A number of people brought sweet things for (decaf) coffee break. We had cakes and squares and cookies and Donna's famous butter tarts and fruit and... OH MY! Thank you to all the bakers and purveyors of wonderful treats!

What the World Needs Now is Love: this small group is so good! Joy has made recordings of your parts so you can brush up from time to time, but we're done rehearsing this for a while. Thank you, Anne-Marie and Joy for doing a great job leading this group!

Warm-ups were more physical than vocal even though we should know Crazy Little Thing Called Love enough to sing along to most of it! I guess I got you doing too much with your hips and arms and hands. We're supposed to be moving and singing, but we had fun! And, for me, it's important to feel the song with my whole body. It helps with the rhythm and dynamics and it makes it more fun. We used the Dwight Yoakam version to move and clap and sing to.

1. Crazy Little Thing Called Love: We learned pages 10-11(my favourite part).We did that thing where we decide to sing on the beat instead of just before. It's not as cool and jazzy, or country-cool, but cool enough. It's easier for sure.
Watch me for the timing of this section, and always at the end. We will have Joy play all the way to the end of her part before we say "Yeah!" so that it has its own special moment.

2. Seasons of Love: We learned from bar 28 to 48! There is a solo which Nicole sang really well! While she's singing her solo, sopranos are with the altos, and it is a similar thing to what you sing during other parts of the song. We spoke the words "Celebrate, remember a year in the life of friends" to learn the rhythm of that phrase. It's not as hard as it looks. We sang thorough the whole song, and it is getting easier to sight-read now that we know so much already. There is an optional solo section starting at 62, but we'll have all the sopranos on that line, but soft so that the other parts come through-all the parts are important and we have to figure out how to blend together. We also have to figure out an ending. I really don't like the (non-) ending of this arrangement. So, be prepared to play with that a bit.

3. Let There Be Peace on Earth: We learned the ending from the top of page 6 after the fermata (which we will observe) to the end, the first (loud) ending, not the optional (quiet) ending, part of section F. I had planned to do all of section F, but we had too much fun at break time. Remember to move into your own line at the beginning of the second system. Except maybe the tenors- I suggest that you write your part over the bass part in the bass clef. You'll stay there, at the top of the bass clef, for the ending. Tenors, for the word "begin", sing the quarter notes. Everyone, there is a rallentando that we're observing. (language lovers: 'lent'or 'lento' is in there) We will slow down the words "let it begin with", leaning into those quarter notes in the alto and tenor lines especially. Watch for the rest, because we go back to the regular tempo (a tempo) and Joy has some awesome chords to play, and a tremolo at the end (Why do I like tremolos so much? Thank you, Joy for indulging me!). We sang from section E to the end.

Next week is Family Day. We will meet, but there will be no early group. Everyone starts at 7:30.

  • Crazy Little Thing Called Love
  • Let There Be Peace on Earth
  • Unity
  • Why We Sing
  • Wonderful World
Sign up for Man in the Mirror! It starts the week after next at 6:30.  I need all parts, please.

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