Saturday, 12th February 2023

Nearly ninety members of the choir met for this third rehearsal. The hall buzzed with conversation and anticipation. When the choir was asked whether they had been using the online resources to rehearse, there was a resounding ‘Yes’!

The rehearsal began with running through the first movement. Andrew immediately commented on the improved quality of sound and the sense of confidence that had developed since the last rehearsal.

Andrew led the rehearsal in the ebullient, energetic and humorous style that we have begun to know so well. Sopranos were encouraged to consistently achieve their ‘top A’s’ and, amongst other techniques, Andrew demonstrated how to use a smoother ‘legato’ when singing the fugues and building a crescendo.

The choir was also amazed to find that they were able to sing several sections without reading the score- something that Andrew would like to encourage to help singers to ‘look up’ and ‘sing out’, rather than looking down into their copies. All ended the day feeling ‘tired’ but happy!

Feedback comments

I particularly enjoyed:

  • Andrew’s teaching and singing with others.
  • Singing without the music: scary but satisfying
  • The balance of intensive focus and singing through.
  • The music and everyone singing – very uplifting.
  • Achieving a more pleasing balance – legato singing. Very energising.
  • Hints on techniques, transferable to other choirs.
  • Bringing greater feeling / atmosphere to the piece.
  • Our conductor’s fun approach.
  • Developing musicality: line, tone, phrasing , colour words.
  • Andrew’s enthusiastically conveyed instructions and teaching.
  • Nick Butters’ amazing playing – how does he do it??!

I found the following particularly helpful:

  • Warm-up and exercise for breathing, posture, facial muscles
  • Exercises before singing
  • Shaping of phrases
  • Andrew’s tips on pronunciation and posture
  • All excellent and inspiring and relaxed enough to feel you can say if there is a difficulty
  • Musical phrasing and help with higher notes
  • Exercises to warm up voice and technique for high notes
  • Emphasis on words, posture and breathing
  • The repetition of the points and exercises from the video rehearsals
  • How to form vowels etc. when singing high notes
  • It was good that Andrew made us laugh and therefore feel more relaxed

Thank you to all who provided feedback.

Other comments and suggestions

  • Thank you so much. I think you’ve pitched every detail perfectly in the new shape of the choir.
  • Thanks for a joyful day!
  • We could try more singing with copies closed!

Programme for 2023-24

The Programme for 2023-24 Season was also announced.

Music Director and Conductor: Andrew Padmore.

  • Faure Requiem and Cantique de Jean Racine
  • Elgar The Music Makers

The concert will be held in Carlisle Cathedral on 20th April 2024 at 7.30.p.m.

Rehearsals commence on 23rd September 2023.