I have been singing in audtioned choirs since I was 14, and have loved singing since at least age 3! My sister suggested I write a Blog about my choir life, probably to stop me from talking her ear off about it. I ended 2010 with two big works performed with the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra, Beethoven's Mass in C, and Handel's Messiah. Beethoven said of Handel,
He is the greatest composer that ever lived. I would uncover my head and kneel before his tomb.-- Ludwig van Beethoven, quoted in Percy M Young, Handel (1947)
I found this surprising as I have always thought Beethoven was greater than Handel but then the definition of a great composer is not a fixed idea.
My first confession is that I will write in the voice I sing in - Alto. Being Alto is more than a voice part for me, it is a complete identity. The defining statement of this identity is that I am not a soprano! My grade 11 audition placed me in the soprano section when I had spent the last 3 years being an alto. When I arrived at a new school for Grade 11 and auditioned for the chamber choir I was put in the soprano section! I protested but the conductor was not moved. I was miserable! Sitting with sopranos, singing with sopranos, and trying hard to be a soprano were a bit much for me. My soul is decidedly Alto. I began to skip performances and that brought Mr. Krahn into the student residence to have a chat. He didn't waste any time with small talk, "I guess you really want to sing alto?" And that was that. I have been a contented member of the alto section ever since, and it has been a rather long, "ever since" from grade 11!