I enjoyed an unexpected opportunity today to satisfy my singing urge. Through the wonders of the internet and social networking, I stumbled upon an event being put on by the West Village Chorale, in New York City.
During the summer, when most choirs are "off", the West Village Chorale organizes Summer Sings, a weekly get-together that has been going on since 1972, where choral music enthusiasts, of all abilities, come together every Monday, and under the batons of leading local choral-group conductors, with music scores provided, participate in the singing of great choral masterpieces in the historic Judson Memorial Church in the Greenwich Village neighborhood of NYC.
Tonight's get-together, the second for this summer, featured Cynthia Powell as guest conductor. Cynthia is artistic director for both New York's Stonewall Chorale, as well as the Melodia Women's Choir of NYC.
For tonight's "sing", we would work on Verdi's Gloria, and Poulenc's Gloria. I am utterly unfamiliar with both of these pieces, but decided to go anyway and I'm so glad that I did.
There were at least 75 singers there, some from Melodia, some from WVC, but all quite experienced. Luckily for me, I sat next to another alto who knew both pieces cold, as well as a young man with a beautiful tenor voice who was clearly very experienced as well as very familiar with both pieces. Between the stereophonic input from these two, plus my own sight-singing abilities, the evening went much better than I thought it would. In fact, I had so much fun, I would gladly attend every Monday session if I lived here. What a brilliant idea to feed choral singers a steady summer diet of challenging music, complete with guest directors, guest soloists, a very skilled accompanist, and wonderful, musical camaraderie.
I arrived early so had time to stroll through Washington Square Park where loads of folks enjoyed the cooling mist from the fountain.
Get in the water!
Photos of tonight's Summer Sings
(Big thank you to my son, Tai, for snapping the rehearsal photos while I sang!)