Last night in the church was a good opportunity to get our tuning right. The rehearsal also revealed that there are some traps which are easy to fall into if they aren’t marked in our scores. One was the word “Kyrie” on page 9 of the Fauré (bar 81) which I suggested in the previous Tenor Notes we mark in advance. A number in the choir got that wrong again.

My next marking last night was on page 23 of the Fauré, last bar: marked up to fff (remembering to sing a full length quaver). Otherwise the Fauré seems pretty secure.

RUTTER

Requiem Aeternam

The first problem area for the choir was feeling the pulse in the opening 3 pages of the Rutter. This just needs practice at home, particularly the 3 “dona eis” entries. It could be worth marking 1,2 at the start of bar 17 and 1,2,3 over the 3 beats of bar 18: we have already removed the tied quaver in bar 19 to come in on the off beat.

Most of the choir then failed to come in for the bottom stave of page 3. I have marked 8vo at the end of bar 28 which reminds me to come in immediately at the start of bar 29 and to drop an octave.

Page 9 bar 96: Carleton suggested more breath here as the opening A was not bright enough and is followed by a slight Rit.

Page 23 bar 31: Not a point from last night, but this tenor and bass entry is worth making secure before next week. Our entry note is played twice in the accompaniment: the second quaver of bars 30 and 31 (in the treble clef).

Sanctus (page 27)

Carleton pointed up the Maestoso marking last night.

Benedictus

Page 34 Bar 47: A breath comma is to be inserted before the final Hosanna.

Agnus Dei

Generally this was too quiet so needs to be almost mf for our opening entry on page 35.

Lux Æterna

The first thing to remember is that we sing in the bottom line of page 55. It’s just tenors on the bottom stave, with no basses, so needs to be confident. I have pencilled in “Tenors” at bar 26.

Bar 36: after a lot of legato singing we become marcato here with clear diction, separating the 3 syllables of “even so”.

Bar 72: observe the crescendo.

Bar 78: The crescendo which begins in bar 76 continues through to bar 78 up to mf and lowers to p in bar 80 by tailing off on the last syllable of Domine.

Bar 99: Back to legato singing here (molto dolce from bar 107).

Bar 112: Remember the first quaver must be full length on the vowel and joined to the second.

Overall it was a useful rehearsal and it will be good to get used to the organ next week.

In church again on Tuesday at 7.15 pm.