Church happenings

This morning I sang with the church choir for the first time during mass.  I love it!  I rehearsed with them on Wednesday, and I knew right away this was something I would love.  I should have joined up a long time ago!  I didn’t because it seems like a lot of people not my age, more like my parents’ age and older.  But…their generation doesn’t matter as much as what they do and how they work together.  They are very welcoming to me, even though I feel like a kid trying to hang with the adults.  🙂  There are a couple other people closer to my age, so I know it’s not, like, a complete faux pas for me to want to be there!

They seem to have a really good balance between quality and fun.  They are so professional about it, and I love that.  Each person has their own space to keep our music and pencils/sticky notes/whatever.  I have my own song books that I can write in or whatever.  Everyone gets sheet music to keep for some of the pieces.  People who have been in choir for a long time have these huge file boxes of sheet music!  They recorded a cd a few years ago.  The director is considering having us do a concert with this group called the Master Singers in October.  I would say three fourths of what we sang this morning had at least two-part, if not four-part harmony.  As you can see, they really pride themselves on being good.

On the other hand, it’s totally relaxed.  You don’t audition or anything, you can just join if you want to.  They rehearse once a week, and if you can’t make it to rehearsal, you can still sing on Sunday.  And vice versa, if you have to miss a Sunday, it’s no big deal.  So how are they such a quality group if it’s so relaxed?  Well, my thought is that if you wanted to try it, but then found you couldn’t really hold your own with four-part harmony, you might naturally not find it as enjoyable.  Or, if you stick with it, I’m sure you would get better over time, and the harmony and technical aspects of it would become easier. 

I need to learn more about vibrato.  The woman that sat next to me at rehearsal has this beautiful vibrato in her voice, and I don’t know how to do that on purpose.  I think I do it sometimes, but it’s not something I can do intentionally.  I don’t even know where it comes from…the diaphragm?  The vocal chords?  Vibrato doesn’t seem to be that important in a large group like that, but it just sounds so nice! 

Tonight is the first session of a Bible study that I’m leading.  I’m nervous.  I’m just the timekeeper, really.  My job is mostly to keep us on track so that we stay on topic and finish on time.  But a lot of the people in the group are my friends, and I just feel like….I don’t know.  I’m just nervous.  I’m afraid people will look to me to have all the answers.  Or they’ll really pay attention to my comments, more so than anybody else’s.  In the last Bible study, I generally had the more stupid comments of the group.  What was I thinking, agreeing to lead this thing???  On the other hand, they’re my friends, so I know they will be supportive.  (So, if any of you guys are reading this, be nice to me tonight, okay?)  🙂

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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Becky
    Sep 09, 2007 @ 21:44:21

    I’m so happy your choir experience went well this weekend! You think it’s weird hanging out with all of the “older people,” now try being their director!!!! It was scary at first, but I totally love them. They are the best!! 🙂

    Reply

  2. sarah
    Sep 09, 2007 @ 22:17:44

    About vibrato:

    It comes from the level of the vocal folds. The larynx (voice box) has five muscles that are completely contained within it. One of them makes up the mass of the vocal folds, and there is naturally some tremor to this muscle when you hold a note out. (Similarly, there is a slight natural tremor to your hand when you hold it steady.) There are a couple of factors that factors influence this tremor, which is the physiological correlate of what you hear as vibrato. (1) Age: muscular tremors naturally increase with age. (2) Technical singing skills: there are healthy and unhealthy ways to enhance or diminish vibrato. Trying to make your voice sound vibrato-y may actually cause damage to the tissues you need to sing! If you research healthy ways to use vibrato or employ the use of a voice coach or speech language pathologist experienced in voice, you can learn safe ways to enhance your vibrato.

    If you want more information on healthy ways to use your voice (in singing and talking) try these websites:

    http://www.voiceacademy.org
    http://www.voiceteacher.com/vibrato.html

    Reply

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