Week of March 4, 2019

Concert Choir Practice Instructions

Music for the March 24th concert:

At the River – Sing top part from the beginning through p. 4, second line (system). Last measure of p. 4, move to bottom part. Second system, move back up to top line until the end of the piece.

Wade in the River Jordan. Accurately learn your part and begin memorizing. Concert Choir does not sing the first page. At measure 8, learn bottom line. Page 3, you do not sing until the last two measures. There you sing the top part through the top of page 5. Mm. 56 – 70 sing top part. You don’t sing mm. 73-81. Mm. 82 end, sing top part.

Folk Songs of the Four Seasons:

Even though we will use the music for these, please work on memorizing. Faces need to be up and out of the music.

Spring section: Early in Spring – Concert Choir sings Soprano I part through the top of page 8. Second system of p. 8, sing soprano II part. Page 9 – don’t sing until last note pickup to page 10 where you sing Soprano I part through the second “pray grant me your name, sir” Pick-up to page 11, sing soprano II part to the end. The Lark in Morning – Sing soprano beginning on page 13. At rehearsal H, sing alto line. At the pick-up to rehearsal K, go back to soprano line. May Song – Sing full chorus parts, beginning on p. 19.

Summer section: Summer is a -coming in and The Cuckoo – Full chorus parts. Review previously learned pieces in the section. You do not sing The Sheep Shearing

Carefully review the following:

Winter Section: We need to have our eyes up and out of the music.

p. 59

p. 65


Autumn Section: Review p. 41 and p. 55 at least once per week.


Pro Arte Practice Instructions

*I am attaching the practice commitment and instructions below. Please be sure to read and use instruction as a guide. We want the March concert to be fantastic!

New pieces for March Concert:

Shenandoah, At the River and Wade in the River Jordan. Accurately learn your part and begin memorizing. We have had this music for several weeks. All of it should be further along by now.

Wade in the River Jordan – this piece needs careful attention! Learn you part! Most of this isn’t too difficult, since it consists of partner songs – combining melodies together. Practice correctly singing your starting note for each section.

Shenandoah mm. 21-31 – Molly sings all soprano I parts (stems up) where the part divides. The rest of the sopranos sing the lower note. mm.32 – end, Molly on top soprano part, Dominique and Matilde on lower soprano part. Practice tricky ending on counting.

At the River- the notes for this simply are not that difficult. Please apply yourself and learn them.

The March concert will also include I Believe in the Sun, Simple Gifts and Da Pacem. Please continue reviewing these – especially Da Pacem.

Folk Songs of the Four Seasons:

Keep learning the following:

Spring Section: Lark in Morning – rehearsal E: Sop. 1 on Soprano line, Sop. 2 join altos on alto line. Rehearsal H – all sopranos on soprano line to the end of piece. May Song – all sopranos learn descants.

Summer Section: The Cuckoo p. 24 through 27. For the four part round we will use the same part assignment that we use on Da Pacem. Please also accurately learn the melody on page 28. Continue learning the solfege for your part of the Semi-chorus on pp. 29&30. Soprano: Dominique, Matilde, Molly and Lilly. Alto: Katherine, Siara, Lauren, Sadie, Kamirra

The Sheep Shearing (p.35) – Be able to sing your part accurately unaccompanied.

Winter Section: In Bethlehem City (p.70) - Part division for In Bethlehem City: Soprano I – Dominique, Molly and Matilde; Soprano II – Kamirra, Lilly and Sadie; Alto – Lauren, Siara and Katherine. Be able to sing accurately unaccompanied.

Carefully review the following::

Winter Section: Carefully study text for these. Try to memorize phrase by phrase. We need to have our eyes up and out of the music.

p. 59 – Sopranos, please review descants. Everyone needs to review the ending.

p. 65 – review entire piece, especially descants. Practice descants on solfege and counting. Work on bringing them accurately up to tempo.

p. 77 – Finish accurately learning melody. Sopranos, be sure to study the short descant at the end of the piece.

Autumn Section: Review p. 41 and p. 55 at least once per week.

Other selections to review: Prologue, p. 31 and p. 38

Practice at Home

All choristers are required to practice at home for at least 20 minutes per day, six days each week. The actual time may vary according to the ability of the chorister, but it is essential that all choristers learn the music! Assignments regarding which repertoire is to be learned for the following week(s) are given out at each rehearsal verbally and/or in written form. Follow these home practice instructions! • Stand in front of a mirror so that you can see as well as feel and hear that you are singing properly. • Start with vocal warm ups to encourage free singing. • Practice solfege from Kodaly 333 Exercises every day. • Master the week’s assignment first, and then review and/or learn the other music in the folder. • Practice singing text in correct rhythm on one note, focusing on proper diction and vowel sounds. • Notes must be learned and music must be memorized by the assigned date.

 Home Practice Instructions for Singers!

Compiled for the Greater Richmond Children’s Choir by Leilani Mork

• Check your key signature, time signature, and all musical markings (legato, presto, etc.) Make sure you know what they mean.

• Look through the music and find the potential problems and practice these areas first:

o Meter changes – circle them and know when and how it changes your counting

o Key changes – circle them and know when and how it changes where ‘Do’ is.

o Tricky rhythms (tied notes, etc.) – circle them and practice counting the rhythms slowly and correctly as numbers, then with solfege and then with the words.

o Tricky intervals – practice the solfege slowly so you get it into your ear correctly.

o Practice the breath marks so you have enough breath for the long phrases and can articulate ending consonants at the correct place.

o Look up any words you don’t understand in the text so you know what you’re singing about as well as how to pronounce them.

• Practice in small sections (1 phrase at a time):

o Tapping the beat while counting the rhythms

o Tapping the beat while speaking the solfege

o Tapping the beat while singing the solfege

o Tapping the beat while speaking the words in rhythm

o Tapping the beat while singing the words in rhythm

o Go through each phrase and check dynamics and articulations and add them into your work.

• Once you’ve mastered a phrase, put two phrases together; continue in this fashion until song is completed.

• Things to remember:

o Check with a piano, keyboard or pitch pipe frequently to make sure you are staying on pitch. Find the note or notes that are the intonation culprits and correct them.

o Mark in your beats of rests so that you are aware of how many beats there are before your next entrance.

o If you have the ability to record yourself, do! Your ears will become your best friend and it will give you an immediate feedback if you are right but more importantly, if you are wrong!

o If you are having difficulty with an area, be sure to circle it and ask when you’re at rehearsal so we can address those issues to make sure you understand what you’re doing wrong and how to fix it.

o Find phrases that are similar and practice them back to back where any pitch or rhythm changes so you can understand where they are the same and where they are different.

o Look up the composer so you know who he/she is, when they were born, where they’re from, etc. Find out other major works they have written and then listen to their music to get a better idea of the style.

o Lastly, if 20-minutes a day is not getting you the results you need by the next rehearsal, try adding in increments of 5 minutes a day and see if that helps. If you have difficulty with finding all that time in one sitting, break it up throughout the day but always do at least 10 minutes at one sitting. Make sure you are not being distracted during that time of rehearsal and always remember to review what you learned the day before!!!