Saturday, May 11, 2002

:: Diocesan Choir

John's wife and I attended a rehearsal for the Diocesan Choir last night. John would have been there if not for his pesky exam. The choir is doing the Diocesan Confirmation Mass as well as the Ordination Mass coming up shortly. The group is pretty big and has a nice sound. They are guilty of a couple of choral cardinal sins that I know John harps on us about incessantly in our rehearsals. No doubt he'll have something to add about this. In fact I think he should write a paper on it and do clinics with Church choirs.

"LORRRRDHEARRRROURRRRRRRRRRPRAYERRRRRRRRR!" He's listening but I dare say He'd answer our prayers if we took the "R's" out when singing. Don't EVAH close your mouth to make an "R" sound. In this case "LAHD" with a clear "D" at the end sounds wonderful.

Who turned on the pitch distortion machine! I dare say that all the pitch problems in a choir come from two things. They usually occur simultaneously. First, someone doesn't support the sound they are making with the proper posture and breathing. Second, they don't sing the same vowel sound as everyone else. Take "Lord" from the first example. If half the choir is singing "LAAAAAAAAAAAHD" and the other half is singing "LORRRRRRRRRRRRRD" it is going to be out of tune. Match the vowel sound and the pitch won't be a problem either. Of course you can't breath in and support the sound if you're sitting back in your chair with your legs crossed like you are sitting in front of the TV watching "Mother Angelica Live." Sit up straight with your feet on the floor, breath into your gut and support it with your diaphram and you'll be supporting the sound you're making.

Got anything to add, John?