The Scona Chamber Singers!
After a busy fall preparing and planning the aforementioned project choir, everything is now rolling forward! We chose "Scona Chamber Singers" as the name of the ensemble for a few reasons. Back when I did my Doctor of Music recitals, I named my pick up choir the Scona Chamber Choir, which was a group of about twenty four singers. We did two concerts, one a mixed bag of repertoire from de Victoria, through Hindemith and Schnittke, and the other a fairly ambitious production of Bach's Johannes Passion, both of which were quite successful.
This new incarnation of the ensemble will vary in size from project to project. Anywhere from one to a part singing to mid-sized chamber choir numbers, so we decided to go with "Singers" rather than "Choir" to allow for this flexibility. The name "Scona" comes from the area of Edmonton where we will rehearse and perform for the time being, known as Old Strathcona. There are a few other venues and buildings that take on the Strathcona name, including Edmonton's largest farmer's market, a theatre, and a historic Victorian era three story hotel, one of the last remaining wooden structures in the area. And although the hotel's structure is beautiful, it's modern reputation now somewhat sketchier, I still feel it identifies the ensemble as local, without carrying a bold lettered "Edmonton"moniker. If the future is bright (and yes, I have pipe dreams here - but without dreams, where would we be?) the name will carry a national (international?) uniqueness.
The first concert will be on Sunday October the 25th at 3 PM at Holy Trinity Anglican Church (in the heart of Old Strathcona). The ensemble is made up of seventeen of the best choral singers in the Edmonton area, and a few who now make their home in Calgary. The concert is called "I Was Glad - Music from the English Cathedral" and will include music of Orlando Gibbons, Christopher Tye, William Mundy, William Byrd, Henry Purcell, and William Boyce. Aside from Purcell and Byrd, most of these composers are not well known out of Anglican circles, and all of it is fantastic music! I'm quite excited for the first rehearsal next Friday - only one of four to put the nearly seventy minutes of music together.
In unrelated news. summer is officially over today in Edmonton (we tend to go from summer to winter without much of any autumn). Which means the golf clubs and shoes get removed from the trunk, to be replaced by the curling broom and shoes! Time to locate my tuque and mitts! (I had always thought it was spelled toque, but according to the Oxford Canadian Dictionary, tuque is the correct spelling - interesting!)
Here is our "long term" forecast for the next few days (0C = 32F)
(Click on image for a larger, and more depressing look).
It's worth noting that today, it isn't that bad - predicted to be about 15C, but when the cold front comes through this afternoon, we are expecting very high, potentially damaging winds of up to 90 km/h (55 mph). Any loose objects are being stored in the garage today! This has been the windiest summer and fall I can ever remember!