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Scientifical thinking
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2013/01/28
5:40am
Glenn
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Heimhenge, that really was an extraordinarily beautiful performance. I loved the Soprano soloist's voice. The Baritone was, in my opinion, weak, and too heavy for the piece, and especially for the director's interpretation of the piece. Which brings me to the director. Wow. He did a few things I have never heard, and I loved it. I loved his pacing of several of the movements which, in my experience, are often too ponderous. His interpretation brought out the celebration that I think Brahms intended.

And, just to prove that you can, indeed, find ANYTHING on the internet: I tried to determine the exact date on which I performed Ein deutsches Requiem, and I found not only the date but, to my great surprise, also a newspaper photo of the dress rehearsal, with a partial picture of ME in it! (see the red circle.)
Glenn in Ein deutsches Requiem

2013/01/28
12:22pm
New River, AZ, USA
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Ahhh … a Princeton alumnus, huh? Impressive. I attended a mere "state college" at the University of Wisconsin. 1978 was the year I escaped to Arizona. I'll have to take your word that the circled individual is you. So what voice were you singing?

Totally agree with your opinion on the baritone. I sang that voice in HS and college choir. Not saying I coulda' done better, but I know what a baritone is supposed to bring to a performance. Never having heard Requiem before, I enjoyed adding it to my musical experience. Also thought the soprano was awesome.

2013/01/28
1:42pm
Glenn
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Yes, you will have to take my word. But it's a little too coincidental that my AWWW avatar shows a rounder, bespectacled face cut off in much the same way as the Requiem photo.

I was a baritone, too. As you know, that means I usually either sang bass impotently, or tenor weakly. You pick.

2013/01/28
9:19pm
tromboniator
Alaska
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Glenn said

 

I sang it much closer to the time it was written.

I got disconnected from singing after high school (and from trombone after junior high), for far too long, until circumstances made it ridiculous not to get plugged in again.

 

I will be singing (bass), in part because there's not much down time in the chorus except during the vocal solos, so it's more overall fun than the trombone part; in part because these days there are gobs of trombonists around here; and in part because the bass section needs a leader. In the great scheme of things (i.e. in life) I tend not to be a leader, but I have been a stage performer since childhood, and fairly regularly for the past 45 years, and have little fear embarrassing myself if I make an error, so my entrances are confident, or at least look like it. I read music better than most of the section, have good pitch, and am acutely aware of dynamics. It is without question an amateur project, but we started working on it in September and will perform it in May, and, as I said, the director is superb. And he didn't really give me a choice!

We'll sing in English. It's hard enough to get a hundred or so Alaskan amateurs to shape their vowels and articulate their consonants beautifully in English. We have sung songs in German before, but a song of four or five minutes was is a far cry from nearly an hour and a quarter's worth. We have two fluent German speakers in the chorus: one Swiss-born, the other a child of Swiss immigrants. I took two years of German in high school, almost fifty years ago. No one else has a clue. We also want to make it as accessible as possible to the audience, as it will be presented in part in memory of a couple of members of the local arts community.

I'm participating in a brass band that'll be playing Mardi Gras-style in our Winter Carnival parade on February 9. It typically rains for Winter Carnival, but that's better for trombones than the current 16°F. Also working on William Tell Overture, among other things, for Summer Music Festival in August. Etc. Retirement is not boring.
2013/01/29
9:28am
New River, AZ, USA
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Tromboniator said: I'm participating in a brass band that'll be playing Mardi Gras-style in our Winter Carnival parade on February 9. It typically rains for Winter Carnival, but that's better for trombones than the current 16°F.

You are no doubt referring to the unpleasant experience of having you lips or tongue frozen to the mouthpiece. I played trumpet in HS band, and we marched at football games, often in below-freezing temperatures (Wisconsin). Our band director warned all us brass players to warm up our mouthpieces in our hands or pockets before setting flesh to metal. Once stuck, all you could do is breath through the mouthpiece until it warmed enough to let go. Happened to most of us at one time or another.

Never did fall for that "touch your tongue to that metal lamppost" trick. But I know there's a lot more metal in a trombone mouthpiece, so it probably holds the cold longer. Or maybe you all use wood or ceramic or plastic mouthpieces in those climes? A girl in our band played an heirloom all wooden trumpet, which I thought was pretty cool, and she never had any issues with low temperatures.

2013/01/29
1:04pm
Glenn
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Another common thread. I used to play various brass instruments (alto horn, baritone horn, euphonium) and had the distinct displeasure of playing carols outdoors for hours around Christmas time in freezing temperatures. Today, they have it easy with the microwavable heat packs! I gave it up when I got braces on my teeth. The thought still makes me quake.

2013/02/04
5:45pm
tromboniator
Alaska
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I have a Lexan mouthpiece, so there's no sticking to cold metal, but the slide lubricant is a paste or ointment that is slippery when water is sprayed onto it, so if it's cold enough, as when I went caroling, the slide freezes. I suppose the solution (so to speak) is old-fashioned slide oil, which I guess is petroleum-based, and it stinks.

I did once get my tongue stuck when trying to lick a snowflake from the metal crossbar of my Flexible Flyer sled .

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