So, I haven't been as good about my blog recently, but really exciting and fun things are happening here. Most recently, we got to spend an evening with harpsichordist and Handel expert Susan Ferre and members of the Texas Baroque ensemble. We spent the evening learning about 18th-century performance practices and conducting excerpts from Handel's Messiah. It was like karaoke for sacred music majors. We had a great time – everybody did a wonderful job conducting singers and live musicians, and coping with singing the normally familiar music of the oratorio at lowered pitch. The fact that the music is placed just that much differently in your voice really makes a difference! I was groping for notes that I normally am pretty solid on. It was lots of fun. One MSM did particularly well conducting a recitativo accompagnato for which Dr. Hawn was supplying the tenor part – and pugnaciously over-ornamenting the line in an (unsuccessful!) attempt to throw the student conductor off. Our classes are like a concert and a comedy act rolled into one.
I got my first chance to get up in front of the Chancel Choir at First Pres this past week, starting to prepare them to sing Eleanor Daley's arrangement of the Huron Carol for Christmas Eve. They seemed to like it! I'm really looking forward to combining them and my Youth Choir for the piece. In other news, I had my youth sopranos and altos holding a major 2nd last practice – woo hoo!
I'm doing lots of assignments and writing papers and tests, and getting the same back with favourable results, which feels great! Please pray for me as I navigate the upcoming weeks, with many things coming due around the same time and a trip to Oklahoma thrown in for good measure.
But wait - it's a VIDEO update! Here are two clips from the World Communion chapel service. Enjoy!