Rehearsal Notes for March 28, 2017

Rehearsal Notes

Essential Elements: We played line 89 (Bach Chorale) as a warm up, because the singing style helps get the air flowing, and our ears listening for harmony and tuning.  53, 54, 55, 57, 77 and 89 will also be on our program for April 18. If some of you are looking for a challenge, we would love to have a brass trio (or maybe a triple trio!) for 131 and  a woodwind sextet (three on A, three on B) for 186 to give us a contrast to the BIG concert band sound, as well as add easily-recognized pieces to add to our program.

NOTES:  Our upcoming rehearsal is the “Dress” Rehearsal.  Two volunteers for stage crew are needed – please email Felicia at   The stage crew and percussion will meet at 5:15 to set up for our 6:15 rehearsal.  Music stands should be marked with your name.  For this rehearsal, no need to “dress” in our concert attire: black with the optional splash of spring colour!

Relaxation and better playing technique: Remember to take time before and during practicing to stretch (arms in a Y shape above the head) to expand your chest and release any tension.  Maintain a high chest and dropped (relaxed) shoulders while playing.

Concert Decorum:

Remember, you are on stage.

People can see your socks, and even unmentionables if you decide to “dress up” in a dress or skirt.  Black everything is best.

Get prepared to play as quickly as you can, then look up at the band leader to signal that you are ready.

Watch the band leader.  Watch the band leader.  Watch the band leader.

The entire band sometimes stands up in unison when the band leader comes on. Following a piece or set of pieces, the band leader acknowledges applause on behalf of the band.  The band may be directed to stand in unison after the final piece, to acknowledge the applause of the audience, but only the band leader will bow on behalf of all, to avoid crashes and instrument damage).

Our performance order is:  Celtic Air and Dance, In the Wake of Spring, Visions of Aranjuez, 25 or 6 to 4.
Celtic Air and Dance:  This piece is really coming together! Edit out a note or two, or simplify anything that is still tripping you up, so that you can ENJOY this piece, and then try practice along with the recording.  We do need to use the band leader’s tempo for all the tempo changes, so that we are together, and these metronome markings give you an idea of what we are aiming to do together.  (Of course, we should always be ready for the unexpected, so keep your music stand high, so that you can see your music and the band leader.)

Metronome settings:  Opening measures (80 and slowing down)

Measure 4 (84)

Measure 35  (112 – 116) (trumpets come in at 45 at this tempo…it moves!)

Measure 57  (126 – 132)

Wake of Spring:  (72)  It is sounding beautiful! The tempo is pretty slow for this one so get a good breath at the beginning.

Visions: (144) We worked on getting the feel of this piece and being prepared to come in. Remember that there is the simplified and the more complex 2 vs 3 rhythm often happening at the same time. We played through this twice and it is sounding good!

25 or 6 to 4:(metronome 138 – 144) Everyone is sounding more solid!  Low part:  Keep your eighth notes ultra-steady, controlled and balanced… not too loud.  The last note is staccato… right off.  Listen to the piece, and practice measures 45-46, so we are right together on the rhythm and articulation of DA duht duht DA  DA   DA duht  DA –A- A

Songs of Africa (SONG #3):   Metronome (88)  This song is an anthem, so make your part sing out…. Every note should get it’s full value, and a full, rich tone (support your sound from the abdomen, with lots of air).

Important Dates:

NoteApril 18 is the date saved for our seniors residence concert,  location TBA Tuesday.

Sunday, April 9, 2017 at 3pm   Concert  at Dominion Chalmers (we will need to arrive early, around 1:30 for a 2 pm warm up on stage)

Tuesday, April 11 extra rehearsal (to play through all our repertoire for the senior residence concert and arrange car pools  and percussion transport

Tuesday, April 18 Senior’s residence concert

Saturday, May 6 1:20- 6:30 Intercity Band Clinic for New Horizons Bands from Ottawa (we are hosting!), Potsdam, NY, and Montreal, PQ

Links:’_iAfrika (interesting info on Song #3 from Songs of Africa, a song which features several languages! Read more, including translation!)  (powerfully sung by Ladysmith Black Mambazo, Paul Simon, Miriam Makeba and the audience)     (sung by Soweto Gospel Choir)   (with pictures, a tribute to Nelson Mandela)

Songs of Africa (arr Johnnie Vinson)     (This is the band that we have.  It includes three African songs, and the third one starts at 2 minutes 47 seconds, so you can choose to skip to it, but all three songs are great!)

Celtic air and Dance

In the Wake of Spring:

Songs of Africa

Visions of Aranjuez

25 or 6 to 4:

Our version (level 2, incomplete recording)

Marching band level 2-3 arrangement, full piece for listening :