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Items by Marie Grass Amenta

Results: 604
Title Author Date
Comment: Re: SSA repertoire - French & acapella?
I paired this Poulenc with Andre Caplet's "Mass for Three Voices" a few years ago and it worked very well.  And am doing the Poulenc once again for a concert this November of "favorites"........it's tough and we want to sing it again and again after all that initial work. Heck, you want challenging...
Comment: Re: GUEST BLOG: Choral Ethics (Part 2): “Amateur Versus Professional,” by Marie Grass Amenta
Dear Olena,   This is part of an ongoing series of something I call "Choral Ethics."  It is not a question of this particular portion of the series  really being a debate of Amateur vs. Professional--it's not-- but more of a musing of what it MEANS to be a professional or call yourself a profes...
Comment: Re: GUEST BLOG: Choral Ethics (Part 3): “Kindness is NOT for Wimps,” by Marie Grass Amenta
Thanks Lucy! There are some very good points you make--which will be actually be addressed in my book--that being nasty, inconsiderate etc.etc. wastes time and can cause some of our singers to be tense or feel insecure and may actually undo what we are trying to accomplish. And that can cause us to ...
Comment: Re: Unexpected Composers
Benjamin Franklin was a composer.  I know he wrote string quartets because one of my dear friends in grad school was an expert on them, but I don't know if he wrote any choral music. Charlie Chaplin was also a composer. I think he wrote, "Smile"....(......when your heart is breaking)and there is pr...
Comment: Re: GUEST BLOG: Choral Ethics (Part 2): “Amateur Versus Professional,” by Marie Grass Amenta
It shouldn't be okay to accept the tyrants of the music world.....but we do.  And until we ALL stop accepting *conductors-behaving-badly*......or sopranos or violinists or horn players.......as acceptable behavior, we get what we get.  I've studied with some wonderful people---both conducting teac...
Community Forum Post: Announcement Question
What a  day :(  here on ol' CN....and here in Chi-Town as well!  Anyway, thought I had already asked about a flagged post in Announcements but apparently didn't.    My question---does the announcement of a choir's new and spiffed up website really belong in News and Notices ?  If the choir i...
Comment: Re: GUEST BLOG: Choral Ethics (Part 1): “Songs my Mother Taught Me,” by Marie Grass Amenta
I hope it will be......it goes slow at times.  Thank you!
Comment: Re: GUEST BLOG: Choral Ethics (Part 1): “Songs my Mother Taught Me,” by Marie Grass Amenta
Thank you!  Graciousness and kindness should never be out of fashion. All of us need to keep teaching and repeating these lessons to our students.....and to our own children!
Comment: Re: Disrespected and Frustrated
You're trying to follow a living legend.....it's tough because who ever came before was the best (and probably the only) choral teacher they ever had. Anything you do differently will be considered not as good and if they DO do what you want them to or cooperate, they will feel disloyal to your pred...
Comment: Re: Proper choir name
I've been director of choirs in  two different Presbyterian churches with two different names for their adult choirs---one was the Sanctuary Choir and one was the Chancel Choir.  Had an interim gig a few years ago in another Presbyterian church and that choir was called the Sanctuary Choir.  It w...
Comment: Re: Retreat: Why Do We Do it?
Hi Joshua,   I conduct, as do you, a community chamber choir.  And I have found the biggest issue with adults singing in an intimate setting such as a chamber choir, is also trust.  In fact a few years ago, we decided to have a retreat every summer.  We schedule it for the best time for the mo...
Comment: Re: The “Star-Spangled Banner” Turns 200
Hi Ron,   We're singing three verses.  One of the muncipal  workers I made arrangements with for our *tour* asked me how long we would be singing.  I said I thought about five minutes.  He kinda frowned and said he thought it would be a lot of work  (he's insisting we need a sound system) fo...
Comment: Re: The “Star-Spangled Banner” Turns 200
My community chamber choir is taking a "Star Spangled Tour," singing in four different communities on September 12.  We're also singing "Chester" then The SSB  and have invited members of the communities to join us to sing at the time and place best for them.  We thought a "community sing" would ...
Classified ad: Celebrate the 200th Anniversary of the Star Spangled Banner by singing with the MMS!
The Midwest Motet Society’s Star Spangled Tour Let’s Celebrate the 200th Anniversary of the Writing of the Star Spangled Banner!   The Midwest Motet Society invites you to sing “Chester,” the Anthem of the American Revolution and “The Star Spangled Banner” with us for this very Am...
Comment: Re: Song ideas for chorus of adults with disabilities
Please join our ChoralNet Community by clicking on the Community tab at the top of the CN Homepage and scrolling down until you get to *Friends of Joyful Noise*.  Click on it and at the top of the page should be a button to join the Community.  Join and then start a discussion in the Forum and int...
Comment: Re: Shakespeare texts?
I like Emma Lou Diemer's Three Shakespeare Songs--SATB with piano.  I would also suggest Matthew Harris' Shakespeare Songs--he has FIVE BOOKS of them and all are unaccompanied and range from easy to difficult with different voicings depending on the song.   There is certainly something you could ...
Community Forum Post: oops and help
Hi,   Getting ready to go to bed and was trying to finish up the day's last moderating.  I read a forum posting beginnning a thread--"Pacing and variety for beginning choir"---and approved.  I didn't notice anything unusual but looked again at it for some reason.  The CN User name was "archiva...
Community Forum Post: My mother
My mother passed away late last night after my son and I spent a portion of the evening singing to her.  I saw her Monday evening and she was conscious, complaining about all  the equipment in her lovely living room and she couldn't see her piano .  Tonight when we arrived, she was not conscious....
Comment: Re: Song ideas for chorus of adults with disabilities
Hi David,   Please join the ChoralNet Community, "Friends of Joyful Noise."  We are a community within ChoralNet who have an interest in choirs for children and adults with disabilities.  Repertoire has been discussed many times and I bet you'll be able to find suggestions in our forum.  As we...
Community Forum Post: Heads Up
Hello,   I am on duty tomorrow and I fully instead to be on duty however, it is very bad with my Mother.  We are now arguing with my Dad about Hospice and I am wrung out.  There is no hope, please pray she makes it to their 60th wedding anniversary party on August 3 really for Dad.   ChoralN...
Comment: Re: Formation of the Board of Directors (adding and dismissing directors)
My husband is on the board of a performing arts organization (not a choral ensemble, but an orchestra).  They have about 30 on their board of directors, including the prez, veep, treasurer and secretary.  They have a nominating committee and before their annual meeting, they present the list of ne...
Comment: Re: Galuppi Dixit Dominus
I was going to do it with strings--I actually sang in the North American premeire of the work and loved-loved-loved it--but found a recording (a Canadian children's choir) of it with only the organ continuo (actually the organ part is in the choral octavo)and decided to do with with just organ.  My...
Comment: Re: Galuppi Dixit Dominus
Which Galuppi Dixit?  My chamber choir did a version last fall, edited by my late conducting professor David Larson, which was SSAA and used organ continuo only.  I did purchase the continuo part--and the choral scores--with no problem.  I believe the publisher is Roger Dean and did notice the st...
Comment: Re: What can conductors wear for hot weather performances?
I bought something similar for my son who is a concert pianist for a recital he gave several weeks ago.....two different styles, both in black......from Amazon.  I think his were Filipino wedding shirts....but it's the same idea.  The weave is loose and air is able to circulate and he said he was ...
Comment: Re: Rotator cuff (shoulder) problems and Rocktape
I love Alexander Technique and use it myself (my undergrad voice teacher also taught AT and introduced it to me when it WASN'T popular) and the  breathing exercises with my choirs.  One of my sopranos swears it helps her allergies....don't know about that but do know when we don't *make time* for ...
Community Forum Post: Flagged Message in Forum
Hello Folks,   There is the beignning of a snarky, snotty conversation happening in the Forums and I've flagged the offending post in the queue.  Under Mousy, Quiet Girls, one person is taking exception to the orginal poster's choice of subject title and posted a comment--as a former mousy, quie...
Comment: Re: Repertoire for a Prairie style/Frank Lloyd Wright inspired concert
We've sung three of the "Four Motets" by Copland and we did talk about them....so at least we're on the right track with that!  I had thought about Barber's "Sure on This Shining Night" and will have to look at “To Be Sung On The Water” and see if it would work for us, personnel-wise.  Had for...
Forum message: Repertoire for a Prairie style/Frank Lloyd Wright inspired concert
Hello Fellow ChoralNetters!   My community chamber choir has the possibility of doing our spring 2015 concert at a faux Frank Lloyd Wright style venue.  This is a private home that is let out for concerts and fund raisers by the owners who have built a new, beautifully and carefully researched F...
Concert: Chicago South Suburban Concert: Poetry and Music
  Intimate Settings, Inspired Singing   The Spring 2014 Concert of the Midwest Motet Society     “Poetry and Music: Benjamin Britten, Randall Thompson and Vincent Persichetti Settings of English Poets, Robert Frost and ee cummings”   Frostiana, Randall Thompson (1899-1984) ...
Comment: Re: Appropriate? Use of sign language to augment music
I really believe ASL is a language, just like any language we sing.  I joke to my chamber choir when we sing in Latin..." I hope there aren't any native speakers in the audience."  We sing in Latin a lot and we work on our vowels and consonants (let's not get into Italianate Latin vs. Germanic Lat...
Comment: Re: Appropriate? Use of sign language to augment music
My oldest son has autism.  When he was 27 months old  and we were beginning our "autism journey," he worked three times a week with a private speech pathologist in addition to the 0-3 program's speech therapist.  After a few months, his speech path asked if we would be comfortable with him using ...
Comment: Re: How to balance repitoire
I love music history.  I think many composers lives are as interesting as anything TMZ or Access Hollywood or People Magazine can come up with.   Franz Liszt was the first Sexiest Man in the World or maybe a Rock Star of his day.  Haydn was a serial cheater on his wife, and Maria Anna Haydn tho...
Comment: Re: How to balance repitoire
I think there are a number of painless ways to introduce repertoire to students.  When planning concerts, pick themes to unify your music choices.  There is so much wonderful music, it's difficult to choose and if you have a built in way to narrow your choices down, it helps.  As an example, if y...
Comment: Re: Help! My student doesn't know how to sit still....
Hi Erin,   It is very common for ADHD kids to have a "meds holiday" one day a week...the meds, while helpful, do things to a child....I totally understand why her parents want to give her a break. I have a few questions and  suggestions to start off with...how old is the child?  And what time a...
Community Forum Post: Help!
Hello Everyone,   I usually don't ask for help but it just occured to me to just out and out ASK y'all and have it over with.   I am doing a presentation on music inclusion (title:  Music Inclusion: How to Open Your Classroom...and your Heart.....to Special Learning Populations)this coming Mo...
Comment: Re: Randall Thompson non-Frostiana?
I've sung (not conducted) two performances of The Peaceable Kingdom.  It is an unaccompanied oratorio for double chorus and just wonderful.  I can't remember the number of double choruses to single choruses  but I think they are about even in number.....and you have to have an equal number of sin...
Comment: Re: The meaning behind "fa la la" in madrigals
Morris is a dance...a type of English folk dance...so the Morris half undone means the dance wasn't finished. Morris dancing sometimes included props such as swords and the dancers moved in patterns. The month of May was very popular for Morris dancing and was often part of other festivals, such as ...
Comment: Re: GUEST BLOG: "Choral Ethics is Not an Oxymoron" by Marie Grass Amenta
I don't see this as an ACDA recomendation thing, really.  I started my research with something I knew about....codes of ethics from AGO (American Guild of Organists) and PAM (Presbyterian Association of Musicians) to see if there was a model which could be used in a more general way.  I also looke...
Comment: Re: GUEST BLOG: "Choral Ethics is Not an Oxymoron" by Marie Grass Amenta
Thanks Rick!  In a perfect world, kind and ethical conductors rise to the top......and the others do not.  We don't live in that perfect world, do we? And so my wish is to encourage the better behavior...for the sake of ensemble.  While conductors who terrorize their choirs often DO  get results...
Comment: Re: GUEST BLOG: "Choral Ethics is Not an Oxymoron" by Marie Grass Amenta
Thanks Bill!   I don't remember you but...it could be!     In my work now, with my adult chamber choir, I try to be kind and am trying to *live this* even more than before I began writing.....but it doesn't mean I'm a whimp. I have become even more  devoted to the music and ensemble and not ...
Comment: Re: Pronunciation of "&" in Cummings Choruses by Persichetti
I will certainly give you credit.  As well, what choral organization did you write this for?  I'd like to credit them as well.  I think I can format this...if not, I'll contact you personally.  Thank you!   Marie
Community Forum Post: Just Another Thursday
Hi Folks,   Please take a look at the flagged post in Annoucements (and a side note, Martin, my moderating button says..at this point...there are 3 announcements but when I click the button and look, there is only 1).  This is a person complaining/asking if anyone else is having trouble paying f...
Comment: Re: Pronunciation of "&" in Cummings Choruses by Persichetti
Thank you!  Will print this up for my Tuesday rehearsal....they'll love it.  And we've been discussing meanings since rehearsals started and perhaps this will help.  Thanks again.   Marie
Comment: Re: Pronunciation of "&" in Cummings Choruses by Persichetti
I think I'd like you to post this as well.  I've done a few sets of ee cummings text choral works and never came across this question until Kari-my-soprano asked it.  I love his poetry....had an English minor as an undergrad.....and am always looking for settings of his poetry.  His "voice" in my...
Forum message: Pronunciation of "&" in Cummings Choruses by Persichetti
Hello,   My chamber choir is working on Four Cummings Choruses by Vincent Persichetti.  The texts are by the poet ee cummings.  Sprinkled throughout are "&"s, since Persichetti is trying to stay true to ee cummings and has not changed the texts.  I have thought there was not any big deal a...
Comment: Re: Great Choral Music by "Forgotten" 18th & 19th Century Composers
How about music from the Galant?  Galuppi and Leonardo Leo and friends.  Tom Tropp, over to you!   Marie
Community Forum Post: Questions, I've got questions
Good Morning Everyone,   I have flagged an announcement this morning and would like you all to take a look and weight in.  And here are my concerns---in the first place, how is this person able to respond to an announcement (a new publication)?  Next, it doesn't seem to have anything....other t...
Comment: Re: Top 10 Choral Classics
Hi Robert,   My *go to* piece for something like this is the Mozart "Ave Verum".....and if I were to pick one piece to do on my last day of life, it would also be the Mozart "Ave Verum !"  I would also suggest the Randall Thompson "Alleluia." The Alleluia might take a bit more than moderate skil...
Comment: Re: GUEST BLOG: “Who are Your Feet?” by Lucy Hudson Stembridge
Love this, Lucy!  As one who conducts an adult community group now.....with singers who have 'stepped out' to have children or TEACH children.....I am forever grateful to those worked with my folks before me.  It's a building process....never ending and never knowing where our singers will eventua...
Comment: Re: How Hard is This Piece?
The thing about this ChoralBlog posting that caught my eye (other than you getting your kids off to ballet....and as an old, real former ballerina, I kinda LOVE that!) was your describing your choir as "semi-pro."  I also conduct what I refer to as a "semi-professional" chamber choir, which means t...