…at least, in a relative sense.
I haven’t dropped to a four-day week – quite the contrary. With Chorale rehearsals Monday night, church staff meetings and planning Tuesday night, and choir rehearsal Wednesday night, I’ve started looking forward to obligation-free Thursday evenings.
Last night I think I finally got beyond the choir’s comfort level and started hitting things with which they are unfamiliar. Some of the music has some really funky rhythms and dissonances, and they gave the group fits. I absolutely hate picking a piece of music, then having to reaccess whether or not it can be prepared in time for the appropriate service. Mind you, the choir tried admirably, and did much better than any other church choir I’ve worked with. I’m more concerned with what this says about my decision-making in regards to repertoire and what is really doable.
When I was director at First Presbyterian in Laurens, a buddy of mine dropped by to listen to the rehearsal. He said afterwards that he heard lots of things he would have wanted to correct. At the time I think he still had the ideal of Furman Singers planted in his mind, and hadn’t realized the differences in working with a church group.
The differences between a church choir and a community or college ensemble are staggering. Typically, a community ensemble rehearses for a single concert for several weeks or even months. A church choir has a performance every week without the benefit of such extensive rehearsal. It can be daunting.
All this being said, Laura reminded me that maybe we need a couple of flubs so that they are reminded to keep looking for a permanent director. We’ll see.