Before the sweet glow of music-making fades into frantic studying, note-taking, rehearsals, and paper-writing, I want to take a quick moment to reflect on last weekend’s concerts.
We sang our program twice: in Doylestown, PA, on Saturday and in Bristol Chapel on campus on Sunday. Such an incredible musical journey! We tell the legend of “The Walled Up Woman” (Esenvalds) in reverse time, so the concert starts with her funeral and moves backward to her childhood. We sing through her death, her acceptance of death, her marriage, her wedding, her youth. It’s a powerful program, one that I think wouldn’t work if we sang the music any other way.
The Esenvalds piece has really grown on me. It creeped me out when we first started working on it, but now I enjoy telling the story. But now I feel badly for our whole audience who is hearing the piece for the first time (and possibly being freaked out by it). Matt says I’m very sensitive and that not very many people will react the way I did. I hope that’s true.
I cried a lot during the performance. Part of it, I’m sure, is the fact that I’m a young, married woman who unwittingly places herself into the storyline. (Part of it is just the fact that I cry all the time.) But it’s not my fault — this story is so emotional! All the references to love make me think of my dear, dear husband and how precious our life together is. Plus, one of our concert pieces was sung at our wedding, so you can pretty much expect some waterworks from me.
We also sing a few pieces by Daniel Elder…shameless plug, we have a new CD out now! Buy it here!
I am completely honored and humbled to sing in the Westminster Choir. Every day in rehearsal I am surrounded by some of the finest student musicians on the planet, and we’re being taught by one of the greatest choral pedagogues of our time, and I think, “How did I get here? Do they know they let me into this group?”
Sometimes in performance (and rehearsal, too) I’ll stop singing for a second just to listen, and I can’t believe that I’m a part of this ensemble and a part of the sound. Especially when I hear just the altos singing, I can’t believe how pure, beautiful, and unified the sound is, and that I’m in it. It’s unbelievable.
I am so blessed. I pray that I will remember that always.