Sunday, March 29, 2009

Carmina Burana

These are my Alto buddies right before the concert on Saturday

I didn't bring my camera so luckily my alto friend brought hers and took this for us.  It's not very often we are dressed so sharp.  We had such a fun performance last night with the American Festival Chorus.  During the dress rehearsal we went through the whole thing for the first time with the soloists, the Cache Children's Choir, USU Chamber Singers (dressed as monks), and the USU Ballroom dance team.  I finally started getting the piece.  When we first started rehearsing this piece I was sceptical of the value of this music.  For me to really like a piece I have to have some emotional connection to it.  I found my self falling asleep in rehearsals!  Wednesday night we practiced on stage with the orchestra and I started getting excited, then Saturday, wow this is going to be awesome!  Craig Jessop was so into the rehearsal I didn't dare make a peep because he expected everyone to be completely focused.  He kept saying diction, spit your words out.  I was glad I had music because it acted as a shield for the people in front of me.  I kept spitting on my music while I was singing.  Craig was so intense during rehearsal that at one point he threw his baton into the orchestra.  He does not miss a second of rehearsal.  He will not waste time.  In rehearsal we have learned that you do not ask questions.  He will answer the question eventually but in his on time. There has only been a couple times that he thanked a person for pointing something out.  That is one reason I just love being in the choir because I never get bored in rehearsal, you have to be on your toes with your pencils ready in hand.  If you miss a rehearsal, it is really hard to catch up because we cover so much.  One thing I have been doing is writing down some of the sayings that he says a lot.  I just think they are gems of wisdom.  
During the performance there were some trilling points that came off beautifully.  I really wonder what the audience thought if they really appreciated the time it took to polish this piece.
 The translation of the music was in the program and I found some really cool parts.  One part I really liked was in the baritone solo, Estuans interius.  To put this in context.  The man is in a tavern drinking.  He gets really drunk.  This is his solo.
"Burning inside with violent anger, bitterly I speak to my heart: created from matter, of the ashes of the elements, I am like a leaf played with by the winds.  If it is the way of the wise man to build foundations on stone, then I am a fool, like a flowing stream, which in its course never changes.  I am carried along like a ship without a steersman, and in the paths of the air like a light, hovering bird; chains cannot hold me, keys cannot imprison me.  I look for people like me and join the wretches.  The heaviness of my heart seem like a burden to me; it is pleasant to joke and sweeter than honeycomb; whatever Venus commands is a sweet duty, she never dwells in a lazy heart.  I travel the broad path as in the way of youth, I give myself to vice, unmindful of virtue, I am eager for the pleasures of the flesh more than for salvation, my soul is dead.  So I shall look after the flesh."
Lots of symbolizm in here.  But so many truths in this.  This man is so lost.  He doesn't have a foundation, or a source of direction spiritually in his life.  His heart is heavy and His soul is dead. Strong words, I wonder how many people feel this same way.  The Wheel of Fortune, sometimes we are up and some times we are down.  Fate is the only determining factor in our happiness? This secular piece of music made me reflect on my own life.  I'm grateful I believe in something more then just fate or luck.  
The variety of music in this work by Carl Orff is amazing.  The contrasting jumps from simply beautiful, to immensely intense and then frolics happy.  If you ever have the chance to hear this live, do it, you will love it.   
For those of you that live in the area, our next performance will be April 25th.  We are singing Beethoven's 9th Symphony.  Memorial Day we will be singing with Donny Osmond and his band. The tickets will always cost money-so far they have all been $10. USU students will always be free.  You will never be disappointed in going to one of the concerts. Craig Jessop guarantees a brilliant and multi-dimensional concert.  


David said...

Oooh, it sounds like it was a spectacular performance. I wish I could have seen you and Devin sing in it. When I was in High School our choir sang a couple of pieces from it and at the time I was enamored with the music. The entire work is really amazing. So, a few years ago when a group was performing it at the Verizon Center in DC I told Bonnie we had to go. It was so disappointing because it was more theatrics and had a small choir. This has to be sung with a hugh chorus and huge Orchestra. I'm sure you guys did not disappoint your audience. Again, I wish we could have been there.

Sandra said...

I wonder if I can get Kevin to take me for my birthday (wink wink) It sounds great. You look so pretty in the pictures. Wow your hair is getting long.

cbracken said...

Is it OK to say I am so jealous of your chance to be in such a cool choir? I miss singing regularly so much!!

Michael and Julie said...

Hello cousin! So the I don't know if it's just how my template is set up, but all i do on mine is upload all of my pictures, and then put the cursor the bottom right of each one and press enter a few times. That should give you enough room to comment after each picture! good luck :)

KarateGirl said...

I wish I could have seen you guys...argh!! I miss living in Logan sometimes...times like these...I also miss being in a cool choir!!