Monday, March 10, 2008

Sing, Sing, SING!

WH and I have hit what is probably our busiest time of the year, but what a wonderful part of the year it is to be associated with choral music. Byrd's "Ave Verum Corpus" (Palm Sunday), the Hallelujah Chorus and the Holst "Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silence" (Easter Sunday), Palestrina's "Sicut Cervus" (Easter Vigil), "There is a Green Hill Far Away" (tune: Horsley, our final hymn on Palm Sunday, sung unaccompanied, tears result), Rachmaninoff's All Night Vigil (WH in concert with the city's Professional Choir on Good Friday)...

Particularly challenging for me this year are two pieces of solo singing that I'll be doing for the first time, one at the Good Friday service and one at the Easter Vigil. On Good Friday, I'll be singing The Reproaches (setting by Macdonnell), and at the Vigil, I'll be singing the Exsultet. Though both are big and challenging, it is such a pleasure to get a chance to learn them. I love this kind of musical liturgy, and am always surprised by the emotional effect they have on me. So the real challenge will be singing them without bawling.

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