Tuesday, 12 September 2017

Singing Camp

by Matthew Curmi

Singing-Camp-PosterThe dates 10th November 2017 to 12th November 2017 marked the choir’s annual commitment of holding a choir-weekend. Such an event engages the choristers in activities that promote the development of them as choir members and thus the choir as a whole.

This year’s choir-weekend or better Singing Camp, featured the director of Wokingham Choral Academy and Farnham Youth Choir - Jo Mc Nally. Her experience in working with choirs in unique and creative manners made her a must-have this year.

There were six sessions in all in which the choir practised vocal techniques, musicianship skills as well some new repertoire. The choristers were exposed to newer ways of looking at and interpreting music notation. Moreover, a better understanding of how the human voice functions and how one makes the best out of it.

The new repertoire included everything from pieces based on Shakespearean literature, Kodaly’s glorious works to other completely new genres of music for our choir such as a tribal song originating from Brazil. The latter being favoured by most choristers for the onomatopoeic sounds and dialect or better still roughness associated with it. Other pieces included ‘Shto mi e milo’; Bulgarian for ‘I’m kind to you’.

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In other occasions during this camp we had moments where the choir bonded as a family. Board games and frequent coffee breaks in between sessions helped relieve some exhaust which one might associate with choral singing. These helped choristers to better familiarise themselves with one another since the choristers are diverse in every aspect of life. This is something which I believe makes our choir truly unique.

I should take this opportunity to thank Jo McNally for sharing her know-how of singing with us. Furthermore, thanks to Silvana Sultana, Stefan Attard and Marouska Attard for handling the logistics involved with such a project. Lastly to the employees at the Porzuincola retreat home for hosting this event. This master class was supported by the ‘Arts Council Malta’.

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