artsyhonker: a girl with glasses and purple shoulder-length hair (Default)
That was... a lot of work.

Friday I printed some music, packed my bags, and took the train to Hitchen, to arrive at Benslow Music Centre in time for supper.

The schedule was:
18.30 supper
20.00-21.00 Session

Saturday
Breakfast
9.15-10.45 Session
break
11.15-12.45 Session
break and lunch
14.30-16.00 Session/Free time (we had free time)
break
16.30-18.00 Session
supper
20.00-21.00 Session

Sunday
Breakfast
9.15-10.45 Session
break
11.15-12.45 Session
break and lunch
14.30-16.00 Session (we had ours slihgtly early, from 14.00-15.30, in order to get away a bit earlier)

The West Gallery course was rather low in numbers, I think probably the minimum to make it viable really: I had six people, two playing the violin, one playing the ophicleide or singing bass, and three only singing (SAA). So we did a lot of three-part stuff, and I ended up singing tenor nearly all the time. The Ophicleide was great, but way way too loud for those numbers and administration, so he gave up partway through Saturday and switched to singing. He also had to leave early, so for the Sunday afternoon service we switched to me playing bass on the piano and singing what I could while also directing... it sortof worked.

At these things there are a few obvious dangers. One is that people feel they haven't had enough to do, they are there to sing/play but you keep talking at them and they get frustrated. Another is that you only give them easy music and they get bored. A third danger is working them a bit too hard, so that they're exhausted.

I think I erred slightly on the side of exhaustion; with more planning on my part, we would have done a bit less singing in some of the Saturday morning sessions, then a bit more Saturday evening (the last session of the day was almost entirely readings).

The thing that I wasn't keen on was the bit where I couldn't get to church on Sunday morning (or indeed Sunday evening, by the time I got back to London); I'd really prefer not to do that.

All in all it was a good experience and I am already thinking about workshops I could run, perhaps in such a way as to not interfere with Sundays.

Meanwhile -- got the Da Capo entry done, ended up having to ask my mother (who is in Canada) to send them a cheque as I have neither access to a Canadian chequebook of my own, nor the ability to purchase, in the UK, a postal money order that will be accepted in Canada.

Next up: looks like the Uncommon Music call for scores has been extended to 15th March. I don't know if I can finish my piece for it by then but it's worth a go. But after that I really have to work on MALTA, MASNAU and ORTUS competitions/calls, all due at the end of March/start of April.

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artsyhonker: a girl with glasses and purple shoulder-length hair (Default)
artsyhonker

June 2017

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