Choir practice this evening.
I’ve been tired the past few days. Actually yawning during the day, which I rarely do. Me and apparently a lot of people were dour and grumpy this morning – a dreary dark raining late fall day.
So choir practice – which is new to me, only a couple months – was missing that bright edge tonight. I didn’t feel my usual unspoken thrill of it as I went there and we started.
The two new songs – one actually new, one semi-new – we rehearsed for Sunday were rather flat, in a way. In one, all the parts sing the same line until the end when we finally break into some polyphony. Both seemed, at least to me in my frame of mind tonight, uninspired, lacking that snap.
But, after the bulk of the night, after break, we went to Benjamin Britten’s “A Ceremony of Carols” collection, which we have been working on – very demanding pieces, adaptions of medieval carols, in their original Middle English, with harmonies and delicious (when done right) dissonances, weaving and delicately jarring notes and words. Even parts in 5/4 and 9/8 time.
And as we sang them, I thought, “This is fun. This is why I came here.”
Simply, the challenging was more fun and more invigorating than the easy stuff. I tend not to challenge myself, and tend to forget that.