Tuesday's session begin with an open mike session - 15 is about the maximum that can reliably work with - and we all chatted together for a short while. John H had added a 'virtual background' to his Zoom presence - very clever and I've been trying to fix one up myself, so far without success. Sarah has managed to get her microphone sorted; Robert's smiling face was back on line; and chairman Bob has worked out how to participate via his phone. It's a pity that some of our members haven't worked out how to use the Zoom system yet but free tutorials are available from me. Or I could find a proper expert! Note that flowers, trees and cuddly toys were displayed - at least at the beginning. I think we got up to 17 of us by the end of the session.
We did some warm-ups and tongue-twisters including one from Mijn Muziek (is my Dutch improving or not?) and then did some serious work on a a lovely round arrangement of Palestrina's Dona Nobis Pacem. This means 'give us peace' and is a phrase used by plenty of renaissance and modern classical composers. I particularly love the Vaughan Williams version which I rehearsed for a term once but never got to perform. Barts Choir did it at the Festival Hall a couple of years ago - stunning. We'll probably do some more work on this Palestrina so that when we get together again we'll be able to sing it in three parts at once. And we did some work on Why we sing again - there are some technical issues with this which need working on but, yes, we're on the case.
So Happy Easter from me - I'll be in and out of the flat and garden - listening to Radio 3 who are promising lots of Bach - both the St John and the St Matthew Passion, though Gramophone magazine are promising a recorded transmission of the 'John' from the Thomaskirche in Leipzig, where Bach was the MD. But I prefer the Easter Oratorio - my absolute favourite (and much shorter).'