19 June 2018

The musical day, 17 June 2018


11:00 Handbell Choir rehearsal.  First time reading the parts I marked up for the Behnke.  Of the four ringers, two are "subs."  We also had our flutist, to whom I had gotten a part only the day before.  With such a rehearsal, you know that things will not start out perfect, nor do you demand that we reach perfection by the rehearsal's end.  This anthem is on for Sunday the 24th, so it's Do or Die.  We're Doing.

12:15 JSB, Mit Fried und Freud ich fahr dahin, BWV 125 on the drive back to Woburn.

ca. 14:15 A nap.

17:40 Holmboe, String Quartet № 13 on the drive to Somerville.

18:10 Enter Clarendon Hill Presbyterian Church.

18:30 Carol launches the pre-concert warm-up/touch-up with Seven-Line Supplication.  We have basically 5 mins per number.  For Hariyu, I target two passages, and then yield, figuring that some other item on the program will want an extra minute, at a juncture when time is a precious commodity.  For Green Is the Color of Its Flame, time insufficient to run the lot.  There's a request to run "my" Allargando.  Everything on the program feels good.

ca. 19:30 Triad withdraw to the (notably cooler) basement.  I close my eyes, relax.  Do not actually sleep, of course.

19:55 We line up.

20:05 Concert.  For Hariyu, I add a new bit of "choreography," in stepping aside the stand and crouching for the piano, 6/8 passage; performance sharp, energetic.  The Agnus Dei goes especially mellifluously;  highly satisfactory.  For Green Is the Color of its Flame, my challenge is, especially, to respect the pianist's activity (i.e., that I not rush);  performance warm, solid, optimistic in that peculiarly Thoreau way.  The entire concert went very, very well.

21:15 Après-concert.  The host of the venue warmly congratulated [Triad as represented by] me on "an excellent concert";  he's worked with us/me several times over the years, so we did indeed manage to make an especially strong impression.  A couple of members spoke me encouraging remarks viz. my conducting, for which I am grateful;  I can certainly stand to do better, as with any performance.  One singer paid me the great compliment of saying that in this performance, the final cadence on pacem was especially affecting.  Another asked me how I felt about the tempo, if it was "what [I] had in mind" for the Agnus Dei;  I explained that I wrote the piece with the idea that, depending on the size of the choir, and on the performance space, the tempo would be malleable – that I did not have a single, "correct" tempo which was the necessary ideal.  I assured her that the composer was entirely satisfied with the evening's performance.

21:45 Holmboe, String Quartet № 13 on the drive home.

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