Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Singing in a Cambridge Choir

Andrew sings in the Wolfson College Choir at Cambridge and the director allowed me to sing in two rehearsals and a small concert this evening.  It made me remember my time in choir at high school, that fulfilling feeling of singing with thirty other people, the physical pleasure of sound, the power and visceral quality of the voice.  There were several members of our choir in high school that came from a tradition of gospel church singing and they brought a passion and fullness to the group sound that was uplifting in a way I'd never experienced in music before.   A sincerity, conviction, and joy that was at once serious and carefree.  

The choir experience this week was a little different.  Certain words were pronounced differently than I would have guessed, there weren't assigned seats, and the atmosphere was a bit more casual than the strictness required to keep a group of high schoolers in line.  The American gospel church tradition wasn't there.  In place of it was a model of the choir at King's, of pure voweled motets, of chorales by Bach.  And yet in it was the same powerful respite in which I had taken refuge over ten years ago, the place to which I had turned in the confusing emotions of growing up, before so much of life as I now know it had even begun to form.  That this act should be such a universal joy that extends across varied traditions and models of music performance is a very comforting thing.  To create a sound with others, to take pleasure in a sound with others.  Incredible to be human and to be able to do such a thing.  

No comments:

Post a Comment