One of the reasons I haven’t been as active in my blog recently is that I don’t want to bore you with the common drudgery of my daily life (get up, exercise, work, practice, more work, rehearse, go to bed, get up and start the whole day over again). But it occurs to me that many of you don’t really know much about the process of practicing music, so I thought I’d give you a little sneak peek into the mind of this singer as she learns her music.
This is the music I have to perform within the next 6 weeks:
(N.B. – I am not including any of the music I perform on a weekly basis at St. Mark’s Church, because it would just make the list too long and complicated, but if you would like to see it, you can go to the St. Mark’s website and see for yourself)
- Philip Glass, Persephone (premiere performance) – March 6 at 8pm
- Gavin Bryars, Lauda #22 & #23 from Lauda Cortonese – March 6 at 8pm
- Steve Reich, You Are (Variations) – March 6 at 8pm
- Franz Joseph Haydn, Theresienmesse (Alto Solo)* – March 14 at 3pm
- Ernest Bloch, Sacred Service* – March 19 at 8pm
- Jeremy Gill, Helian (world premiere) – March 20 at 8pm
- Robert Schumann, Spanische Liebeslieder (excerpts) – March 20 at 8pm
- Benjamin C.S. Boyle, Le passage des rêves – March 20 at 8pm
- Giovanni Battista Pergolesi, Stabat Mater* – March 26 at 6:30pm
- Dietrich Buxtehude, Membra Jesu Nostri – April 9 & 10 at 8pm
*I am familiar with the pieces marked with an asterisk.
Quite a list, isn’t it? Some of the pieces are easier to learn than others, and many of the choral pieces are difficult to practice on one’s own, because of the need to hear other parts. As you scroll through the list, I’ll bet there are only a few pieces on there that you recognize, if any! It’s the same for me, too, which means I have to start from scratch on almost every piece I perform.
So in the next few days, I’ll be sending you updates on how the music-learning process has been going for me: its highs as well as its lows. Hopefully it will give you some insight into the singer’s brain. (It’s scary in there!)