The Acorn - Oak City Sound Weekly Newsletter - October 26, 2022

Type of post: Chorus news item
Sub-type: No sub-type
Posted By: Nic Cols
Status: Current
Date Posted: Tue, Oct 25 2022

1. Notes for this week

  • Last Monday's concert at Glenaire was a solid success!
    • 18 singers, 3 quartets. Very good audience to sing for. And we received a lot of compliments afterwards.
    • A great afterglow was held at our former place, Mac's Tavern, where we had 13 people. including a couple guests. We were actually asked by a patron there to sing a song or two, which we happily obliged!
  • At long last, our Fall Convention and Contest are over and done. Our chorus and two quartets competed. Good evaluations were received from the judges.
    • Thanks to all who participated, and especially to those who volunteered for the various jobs of loading and unloading the risers into the trailer, for driving the truck from and to Searstone, for carrying judges about, and for helping at the concession stand.
    • Many thanks to Carol Stephenson for leading us!
    • It was good to see our former director Kenneth Tice as Saturday night's emcee.
  • Thursday October 27 is our next NCSU Concession Stand opportunity. Show up time is 5pm. Kickoff time is 8pm. See Tim Kinsey for parking passes and details.
  • Next Monday, October 31, we have our usual rehearsal at Searstone at 7pm.
    • We'll be working Christmas rep. By now, all songs should be memorized and we should be off-spots!
  • Congratulations to the Carolina Statesmen, our NSC District Seniors' Chorus, led by Larry Triplett, who qualified to compete at the 2023 Midwinter Convention, to be held on February 7-12, 2023 in Daytona Beach, FL, Convention details are at Statesmen are def recruiting, so see Paul Martin for more details. 

2. Carol's Korner

  • Spend some time at home singing to the mirror. This will give you instant feedback about what your face and body are doing. Make space between your elbows and the side of your body. When your arms are engaged and energized, it will be much easier for you to take deep and efficient breaths. 
  • For our holiday repertoire, you can widen your focus to engage the audience more in your performance. Continue to make my mouth or left eye your general focus, but allow yourself to see the audience and entertain them more directly.

3. Ben's Buzz (New!)

We heard from several contest judges the word “plan”, as if having one would be normal. It is, or should be - a breathing plan, a music plan, and a performance plan. We often call the performance plan choreography, although it’s generally more about facial expression and posture. More on those in another buzz. I simplify my music plan by understanding what words or phrases I want to emphasize in the story and how. Again, in another buzz, or two. Breathing is critical and needs a plan. Here’s the buzz on that, part 1 (of many). 
  • In my music charts the first thing I do is draw a fat vertical green line with a marker in each place where I should take a breath, generally where you see rests - although not everywhere you see a period. I also draw a vertical red line in places where I do NOT want to take a breath even though we’re not singing anything, often where there is a very short rest for musical purposes and no time to breathe. Finally, I add a yellow horizontal line in places where I want to be sure not to breath, usually to ensure phases stay connected, the first thing necessary to create the “arc” Carol talks about. 
  • For me, words are the hardest. I don’t know why. To help that I type out the words to a song and in that text document I add the breathing plan - the green, red, and yellow marks, so that as I continue to learn the words and the music the breathing plan stays alive, and so I can make notes when Carol changes the plan. 
  • Sometimes I’ll share my breathing plan with others in my section so that when we have a long phrase and I really need a breath where there shouldn’t be one, our section can agree on where to sneak air so as not to all sneak a breath all at the same time. 

4. Future Notes

  • Thursday October 27 is our next (#5 of 7) football concession session at Carter Finley stadium.  These are our most important fund raiser events of the year.  We need to provide 6 workers for each event.  The signup sheet is available now.
    • Remember that a volunteer does not have to be a chapter members to work the concession. Family and friends can help out, too.
    • Tim will provide more details as we approach each date. Meanwhile, click Concession to sign up as you are able.
    • Here is the entire remaining schedule, as far as we know right now:
      • Oct 27 - Report at 5:00pm, kickoff at 8pm
      • Nov  5 - Report at 5:00pm, kickoff at 8pm
      • Nov 12 - time TBA
  • John Adams - We are all saddened to hear that John Adams has passed away in early September this year.  John was a long time member of the RTP Chapter.  We have just learned of John's Funeral arrangements:
    • John Adams Funeral:
      November 12, 2022  @ 11 AM
      University United Methodist Church
      150 E Franklin Ave
      Chapel Hill, NC  27514
    • We have not been asked to sing at his funeral.  But It would be great if we can get as many RTP members attend that knew John.  

5. Long Range

  • Christmas Season:
    • Dec 5: Show, a Monday evening Christmas Concert at Searstone.
    • Dec 6: Show, a Tuesday evening. We will put on our Christmas show at the Cary Arts Center theater.   
      • We will need to sell tickets and Ads. Last week, Mike emailed to all of us a summary of what you need to know regarding Ad sales. He mentioned Monday evening that we are not married to a particular pricing structure, so be inventive! If each one of us sold a single Ad, it would bring in more revenue than the entire revenue from our last concert. Just do it! 
      • Christmas Vignettes: As part of the Christmas Show, we will again offer our audience personal stories regarding Christmas. This has been well received by both the chorus members AND the audience. Mike keeps asking for these .... so please create one from your holiday memories THIS WEEK and send it to him. A photo or two to go along with the story would be helpful. 
    • Dec 12: Christmas Show at Glenaire! On a Monday evening. Show up time will be 6:15, and concert starts at 7pm.
    • Dec 19: Christmas Concert at Springmoor Retirement Community in north Raleigh off Creedmoor Rd. On a Monday evening. Show up time will be 6:15, and concert starts at 7pm.
    • And THAT! gentlemen and gentle lady, is an example of a full Christmas Season calendar. So many of us are also so busy with Church choirs and other family activities. It's a very busy time of year for singers, so we should thank each other for each's time, dedication, vitality, and enthusiasm in supporting the Oak City Sound at this time.
  • January - start counting on having a guest night in late January.
  • February - plan to run Singing Valentines again this year. February 14 is a Tuesday, so we'll look for opportunities on the previous weekend.

6. Champagne Room

  • The chapter quartet, Seldom Heard, was initially formed in 2003, with original members George Cherney at tenor, Andy Lesperance at bari, Nic Cols at Lead, and RC Fields at bass. Good times!