We sang with some abandon in the Sacred Harp/Shape Note tradition, the resonant chest voices arcing through the air, yesterday evening, though my joints were slightly aching after the bout of wood stacking. The SongWave Choir members are gearing up throughout this term, and then into the next, for a series of Christmas concerts, so ‘Beautiful Star, of Bethlehem’ was first up. We finished with the delightful ‘Carol of the Bells,’ which will be rendered in Ukrainian. That carol is based on the Ukrainian song Schedryk, composed in 1914 by Mykola Leontovych.
As one of the choir members mused during the break, ‘It’s best to be singing in the heart of the choir, where voices surround the singer and you feel the music from your heart.’ That’s as true during the singing as in the remembering, and the feeling elicits a strong sense that we want to participate at the last rehearsal of this half-term, or first term as it’s called in Scotland.
The joy was infectious, spreading from the choir’s cheerful leader, Kate Howard, and rippling out through the assembled singers.
We can’t wait to learn our parts by heart, along with the words (even the Ukrainian ones!) so that we can lose ourselves in the song.