Monday, March 14, 2011

Only At ACDA

I spent four days last week attending the American Choral Directors Association National Convention in Chicago. Lots of good music, too much to do in a short time, so I'm just posting a couple of random thoughts instead of a properly written post :-)
  • Only at ACDA does the Chicago Symphony Chorus get applause just for walking onto the stage. The applause continued until all 150 or so singers were in their seats, which made for very tired arms. At the end of the program, the chorus and chorusmaster got as much, if not more applause than the soloists.
  • For some reason, Sweelinck was the most popular composer this year--it seemed like every concert program (with four to five groups performing) had at least one of his pieces.
  • Choral directors are a tough audience to perform for, but extremely well behaved. No one clapped until the conductor dropped his/her arms, coughing was kept to a minimum, and no one tried to enter or leave the hall in the middle of a piece.
  • You have to love a worship service where they print the hymns in the program, indicating which verses are sung in unison and which in harmony, and the entire "congregation" sings in perfect four-part harmony where indicated. Also, there was a note during "O Come All Ye Faithful" indicating that all sopranos were welcome to sing the Willcocks descant (NOT printed in the program), and many of them did!
  • The conference ended on Saturday night, with Daylight Savings Time starting the following morning. Everyone was extremely concerned that no one miss their flights on Sunday morning: they started announcing it at the concert programs on Thursday, the hotel sent someone around to reprogram all of the alarm clocks, and the hotel also slipped a letter under the door giving instructions for an extra wakeup call. (For the record, my iPhone made the change without any trouble, and woke me up at the correct time the next morning.)
  • It's funny how your standards change at an event like this. Obviously, some choirs were better than others, but it's hard to remember that even the less-good ones are phenomenal groups that I would be happy to hear anywhere else.
That's all for today!

1 comment:

Anne Elizabeth Baldwin said...

That does sound like a neat conference. {Smile}

Anne Elizabeth Baldwin