Sunday, September 25, 2016

Musical Monday - For Kristy - Happy

Many years ago in a land just down the street, a teacher arrived at a new school & an enthusiastic colleague got things rolling for us to mount a number of musicals & musical events. 

Well, that was great but we needed an accompanist who could be with us before school for 8 a.m. rehearsals & after school and weekends.  One of the mums suggested her friend's daughter who was in grade 9 at the high school.  Enter Kristy Van Kooten.  Now this was a talented young lady.  Kristy played for us for the 3 years I taught at the school next to her high school. 

We won't talk about the time the rehearsal went over time and Kristy was late for her classes.  When they called her mum at home, she thought Kristy was missing and called the police.  Oh the excitement.  All was forgiven and on we went.  

There are many children including our own daughter who have many happy memories of the music we created in those years. 
We did the Psalty Musicals with our grade 5 teacher dressed as a hymn book (a.k.a. Psalter hence - Psalty).  Our principal was the voice of God.  Really.  And all the while it was Kristy who held us together with her fabulous accompaniment and patience.  

Then, she agreed to play again when I was to direct Kiss Me Kate with the community theatre.  Heaven!!

Now, our Kristy is the accompanist for the Embro Thistle Singers. She knows what I want before I do.  Many times we will stop together with the same idea for improvement.  What an amazingly talented and generous person she is.  

Well a few weeks ago, she injured her foot at work.  That didn't stop her from coming to our concert for the Embro Cemetery service.  She also scooted down the aisle at the church for our rehearsal 2 weeks later.  

Well, Friday Kristy had to have a toe amputated.  She is healing well but it will take time.  Does that mean she will miss any of our concerts?  Nope.  Just before she went into surgery, she called to make certain of dates.  

Kristy, you are one fantastic woman and we are so very blessed to have you as part of our musical partnership.  We have so many laughs together as we learn and work.  You make our time so much fun.  

Here is a young choir on a mum's cell phone video as they rehearse.  The second is of their performance.  Can't you see the choirs we had doing just this?  With great memories and so much happiness, I thank you from the bottom of a truly grateful heart!! Heal well and we can hardly wait to again be making music together. 

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Musical Monday - Make Words Meaningful with Different Presentations

Sometimes, when we sing songs we like but have sung over & over, using a different accompaniment, arrangement or tune can really make us & the audience sit up and take notice. 
1.  The Anthem Lights have taken a number of beautiful hymns and put them together as partners in a beautiful a Capella arrangement that really makes you listen in a new way.

2.  This next one uses a completely different tune for a well known hymn.  Does this get in the way of the beauty of the words or help you to hear them differently?  
We have to weigh the benefits of using something that is so unexpected to its ability to make the song(s) even more meaningful.  My only caveat is that we don't make changes just for change sake and that we consider our audiences and our purpose carefully.  For me, these two example work well and enhance the hymns.  Do you agree?

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Musical Monday - Dallas Street Choir - Somewhere Over The Rainbow

Sometimes certain genres of music can seem to be unrelated.  The love of music is very evident in this video in every single face.  They sing because they can & happily share their talents among them.  Music more than anything can bring people together and bind their souls.  Listen.

Sunday, September 4, 2016

Musical Monday - How to Sing VOCAL HARMONY!

Singing something other than the TUNE of a song is scary to some people and can actually keep them from trying out a choir.  This is a fun and simple lesson on singing harmony.  Follow his instructions and see what you can do.  Isn't it fun?