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, September 24, 2019

YRCC Rehearsal 23-SEP-2019

I really needed choir last night! It's such a wonderful escape from our day-to-day worlds, isn't it?! When the day is especially stressful, choir is perfect. Warm-ups included some gentle stress-releasing stretches. ahhhhhh

The small group Evening Prayer met at 6:30 and I hear they've all learned all of their parts. I can hardly wait to hear it next week.

1. Your Song: We spent quite a bit of time on this and it's coming along beautifully. We got all the way to the D.S al Coda on page 10, so we just have to go back and repeat and then learn the ending! We had some challenges with timing, notably in bars 36 and 37. The counting goes like this:
2, 3+ , +, +, +, +, 1, 3+ (the off beats are: much but it's the). Check out the word syncopation in Wikipedia. Also, remember that much is one note. On page 7, bar 65, the word moss is two notes, but the second note comes on beat 2, much earlier than you want it to. Watch out. At bar 70, the basses have the melody. Basses give it all you've got. The tenors will need to sing those high notes softer, and that's not easy. On page 9, at 87 the melody and the timing are not what you expect. Also,
sweetest eyes is tricky. Blair has found this YouTube video of a choir singing our arrangement. Thank you, Blair!

2. Let it Snow: We spent some time on 3 different versions of the phrase "let it snow, let it snow, let it snow": on page 3, page 4 and page 6. The one on page 4 is the trickiest. We sang from bar 15 up to bar 47 where there's a time change and it sounds like a key change. You'll see. We'll do it again. We will take it slow and work on little bits at a time. It will feel so good when we've finally mastered this piece!

3. Button Up Your Overcoat: We're not going to stress over this one. Most of you know it/remember it and it should be fun and doesn't have to be perfect. Every time we sing it, it gets better.

4. Wintersong: This is a new Wintersong. We just walked through and talked about how I'm creating an arrangement to suit us (SATB) based on this one (SSA) version I found. Listen to a SSA choral version, which I couldn't find, here. It's pretty, but I wanted more choir and more "Oh I miss you" and a stronger ending. For homework, please write in bar numbers (the words start at bar 9, there are oohs at bar 17, the sign/segno is at bar 33) so that we can refer to them and compare them to the new ending I've created. You'll be getting a few extra sheets of music next week to add to what you now have. The timing is difficult, but we're going to leave the first two pages to our soloist, Teija to learn. Lauren has agreed to be the back-up.

Next week: September 30th, 2019
6:45 Evening Prayer

  • Grown-up Christmas List
  • Let it Snow
  • Your Song
  • Wintersong
The new small group song will be In The Bleak Midwinter. Sign up on the website.

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