Archive for the ‘Rants’ Category

On warbling

Sunday, November 18th, 2007

I was up a bit earlier than usual this morning so ended up listening to part of Sunday Worship on Radio 4 while in the shower. All was going fine — there was a decent enough sermon from Richard Chartres and one HTB Nicky or another was on continuity duties — until the choir started singing Samuel Sebastian Wesley’s fantastic anthem Blessed Be the God and Father.

I say singing but butchering would be more accurate.

What is it with people (normally sopranos, but occasionally an overenthusiastic tenor) who think they can improve things by singing not only the note requested by the composer but also the notes above it and below it? Soloists can get away with a bit of vibrato, but in a choir it sounds like a back alley full of cats on heat. If you can’t hit the note that’s written and stay on it then please just sit down.

For some reason the choir only sang half the piece — perhaps the choirmaster heard me shouting with disgust at the radio — but frankly it was a mercy that they stopped.