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Rehearsal #9 - April 20

Updated: Apr 24

Dear Friends,


Tuesday's rehearsal was amazing! Was it an exhilarating experience for you? The past two weeks have been that for me - to rehearse as an SATB ensemble, actually hear the fullness of the music from the chorus, and to give musical instructions that change the quality of our sound in real time - that was an inspiring and energizing rehearsal!


On 3 March I proposed the following as our rehearsal map for this season:

  • Phase 1 - introduction & learning of repertoire; 3-4 weeks

  • Phase 2 - developing independence & confidence; 7-8 weeks

  • Phase 3 - mastery of individual parts & recording; 3-4 weeks


We now come to the end of phase 2 and move to phase 3 of our season, the goal being mastering our individual vocal lines to prepare for recording sessions during the month of May. What can each person do to be ready for their scheduled recording session?

Read on . . .


How to be ready to record

  1. Attend our final SATB rehearsal on 27 April

  2. Practice your vocal lines from start to finish at performance tempo with the piano accompaniment previously shared (links are below)

  3. Practice to a point of near-memorization so familiarity is as high as possible

  4. At home, choristers should practice using earbuds or headphones to listen to the accompaniment; you will be required to bring your own set of earbuds/headphones for your recording session

  5. Arrive early for your recording session - there will be pre-recording warm-ups for each group preparing to record; you must attend your pre-recording warm-up

  6. Part & accompaniment tracks HERE; reference recordings HERE

What was decided about repertoire and our end product?


Our audio and video technicians have confirmed they can produce 2 songs with the budget that we have. So, as voted upon last Tuesday, the chorus will record We Rise Again, and Ain't Gonna Let Nobody Turn Me Around. At rehearsal this Tuesday we will focus only on these 2 pieces. Will we throw out our other two pieces? No - we will keep them in our repertoire and plan to present them at our next live concert.


What's the schedule for the remainder of the season?


1. 27 April - final SATB rehearsal

  1. SATB rehearsal focusing on the TWO recording selections above

  2. SATB group 1 at VOS 7:20-8:20

  3. SATB group 2 at VOS 8:45-9:45

  4. No home groups or zoom broadcast - all choristers at VOS in 2 shifts

  5. ARRIVE ON TIME PLEASE


2. 4 May - Recording session #1

  1. Recording groups at VOS 7:15 - 9:45

  2. Each group will take approximately 30 mins to record 2 songs

  3. Soprano group 1: 6 sop1 (5 unmasked + 1 masked singers)

  4. Soprano group 2: 5 sop2 (5 unmasked singers)

  5. Alto group 1: 4 alto1 (4 unmasked singers)

  6. Alto group 2: 6 alto2 (5 unmasked + 1 masked singers)


3. 11 May - Recording session #2

  1. Recording groups at VOS 7:15 - 9:45

  2. Soprano group 3: 6 sop1 (5 unmasked + 1 masked)

  3. Soprano group 4: 7 sop2 (5 unmasked + 2 masked - sops complete)

  4. Alto group 3: 5 alto1 (5 unmasked)

  5. Alto group 4: 7 alto2 (5 unmasked + 2 masked - altos complete)


4. 18 May - Recording session #3

  1. Recording groups at VOS 7:15 - 9:45

  2. Tenor 1 group: 3 T1 (unmasked)

  3. Tenor 2 group: 3 T2 (unmasked - tenors complete)

  4. Bass group: 3 B1 (unmasked)

  5. Bass group: 3 B2 (unmasked - basses complete)


5. 25 May - AGM & review rehearsal

  1. 30 members quorum present as required by ROS

  2. Sign-up form will be circulated so we can have a known quorum

  3. Limited rehearsal offered after 20-30 mins of business

  4. Attendees of the AGM should be those recording next week


6. 1 June - Recording session #4

  1. Recording groups at VOS 7:15 - 9:45

  2. Chamber soprano 1: 5 sop1 (unmasked)

  3. Chamber soprano 2: 4 sop2 (unmasked)

  4. Chamber altos: 8 altos (5 unmasked + 3 masked)

  5. Chamber tenors: 4 tenors (unmasked)

  6. Chamber basses: 4 basses (unmasked, B1 & B2 record together)


Recording groups are not yet determined. I am working with the section leaders to create the recording groups for each week. Recording groups will be based upon the voicing that was done in rehearsal and other factors that we hope will make the best recording for accuracy and vocal blend. Once you have completed your recording session, you are finished attending Tuesday rehearsals.


The arrival/departure timing for this week remains the same as posted for last week:


Group 1

  • 7:10 studio opens - early arrivers may enter the studio

  • 7:20 rehearsal begins - it is imperative choristers arrive on time

  • 8:20 rehearsal ends - routine cleaning must be completed for next group

  • 8:25-30 choristers exit promptly

Group 2

  • 8:35 studio opens - early arrivers should walk the hallways if arriving before this time

  • 8:45 rehearsal begins - it is imperative choristers arrive on time

  • 9:45 rehearsal ends - routine cleaning must be completed for close of rehearsal


**Here's a summary of important data**

  • On-time arrival remains critical for smooth operations, especially when it comes to recording schedules

  • Everyone needs their own headset for the recording session

  • Bluetooth, Airpods, wireless earbuds/headphones CANNOT be used for recording sessions - choristers must have wired earbuds or headphones with 3.5mm (mini jack) male input; Sony, Philips brands are $14.99 or less at Popular

  • See THIS PHOTO sample for what you need; microphone is not needed

  • If you don't object to wearing equipment others have also used, IFC will provide headsets to wear during recording

  • Practice at home using your headsets so you are accustomed to this process at recording time

  • PRACTICE at home, practice, practice . . . . 😁


Questions?

I'm sure I haven't covered every question you might have. So, for the moment, please direct questions to your section leader. Questions remaining I am happy to address at Tuesday's rehearsal.


We are almost there! Every worthwhile project requires effort and discipline. So far, I am very pleased with our progress . . . I'm pleased with everyone's punctuality . . . I'm thrilled with the level of preparation to date and the excellent sound we have so far . . .

We have only now to push up to the next level and complete recordings that are at or above our current level of preparation. You can do it!!


I look forward to Tuesday!


Musically yours,

Tom

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