Category: Choirs

  • Never be witty: Schönberg on conducting

    Never be witty: Schönberg on conducting

    Schreker has a lot to do. During his absence, I am supposed to lead two rehearsals of the mixed choir, and more often the male choirs. I am still very much in doubt whether I can do this! A word from you, dear Herr Schönberg, would be extremely precious to me. In a letter of […]

  • I’m dreaming of a white…carol-book

    I’m dreaming of a white…carol-book

    Going from being the centre of attention on the podium, everyone’s breath waiting on your slightest movement, to once more being just another small box in the corner of someone’s screen, is bruising for the usually well-nourished conducting ego. After a precious couple of months back in action this Autumn, November’s supplementary lockdown heralded a […]

  • Thematic concert programmes: worth the hassle?

    Thematic concert programmes: worth the hassle?

    Conductors…do not always know how to shape a meaningful whole out of smaller pieces…We often program according to some vague theme or chronological order, perhaps without real thought to or justification for our choices. I feel, as they say, seen. The themed programme is a staple of choral concerts the world over, and yet it […]

  • Diversifying repertoire: some practical considerations

    Diversifying repertoire: some practical considerations

    In 2018, I set myself the challenge of programming a week of daily services, for my choir at Christ Church Cathedral, which would feature only music by women. The hope was that we’d find some music to introduce into our core repertoire. In this post I write about why I thought that was worth doing, […]

  • Musical leadership without music

    Musical leadership without music

    The role of conductor changed abruptly in mid-March of this year. For me, it’s thrown the nature of musical leadership into the spotlight: how can those of us with responsibility for musical direction maintain this responsibility when a direct musical relationship isn’t possible? The business world tells us that the companies that do well are […]

  • Making a ‘Virtual Choir’ video with free* software: Part 3 – Video

    Making a ‘Virtual Choir’ video with free* software: Part 3 – Video

    In this three-part series of posts, I’ll take you through why and how to make one of those charming multi-screen, multi-track musical videos, based on my own experiences. I’ve used software that’s freely available online [though see update below!], and I’m very much coming at this from the perspective of an amateur video editor, in […]

  • Making a ‘Virtual Choir’ video with free* software: Part 2 – Audio

    Making a ‘Virtual Choir’ video with free* software: Part 2 – Audio

    In this three-part series of posts, I’ll take you through why and how to make one of those charming multi-screen, multi-track musical videos, based on my own experiences. I’ve used software that’s freely available online [though see update below!], and I’m very much coming at this from the perspective of an amateur video editor, in […]

  • Making a ‘Virtual Choir’ video with free* software: Part 1 – Why

    Making a ‘Virtual Choir’ video with free* software: Part 1 – Why

    In this three-part series of posts, I’ll take you through why and how to make one of those charming multi-screen, multi-track musical videos, based on my own experiences. I’ve used software that’s freely available online [though see note below!], and I’m very much coming at this from the perspective of an amateur video editor, in […]