Friday, September 30, 2005

Found: Luke's Blog

Luke, welcome to the blog world.

Choir, welcome Luke.

Technorati is a great thing, eh?

He has the greatest opening post that I've seen:

I had absolutely no idea what this "blogging" stuff was until my choir director introduced me. I think it's a really useful and interesting tool and a great way to communicate with not only friends but also the world. This will be a beginning to me making my mark in this world and letting my voice be heard, or read, by those willing to listen.

And later, he says nice things about all of you:

I have the privilege of singing with some amazingly talented people who all love music and want to be the best at what they can do. I anxiously await out first performance where I will no longer be sitting in the audience listening joyfully but rather standing on stage lifting my voice in unison and showing an audience how lucky I am to be a part of this choir. As cheesy as this entry may sound, I feel the need to express my gratitude and excitement. UAB Concert Choir ROCKS!

A great guy, that Luke.

Karaoke Night - Sesame Street

The cow singing Karaoke has stayed with me all week, I'm not sure why. And tonight I found a picture . . . the internet is a crazy place, isn't it? I found a site the seems to deconstruct Sesame Street.

Here's the official description of the show:

Karaoke Night at Hooper's Store

Episode: 4031
Not currently scheduled.

It's Karaoke night at Hooper's and everyone is getting ready to sing! Telly is extremely nervous about singing and his friend Baby Bear tries to encourage him to participate. The two of them sit and listen as everyone sings their songs. Rosita makes a mistake but keeps going and Telly sees that this is okay. When Baby Bear gets up to sing he gets very nervous and Telly ends up helping his friend and singing along. When the karaoke machine breaks, everyone gets their instruments and they make their own music together, singing until late into the evening.

AND . . . Here's a site where all of the Sesame Street song lyrics exist.

Thursday, September 29, 2005

A prayer for Maggie


Please toss up a prayer for Maggie, the daughter of Rob Bushway. I follow his daily blog because he is a leader in the Tablet PC world . . . and because I follow his blog I've followed the trials and tribulations of his daughter Maggie.

I am always moved by Rob's struggles-he obviously loves his daughter deeply and she is experiencing seizures that doctors have been unable to stop. He is a man of tremendous faith and wrote about their singing of hymns tonight . . it is a beautiful picture in a terrible time of pain. Pray for Maggie and Rob . . .

He wrote these words in November 2004:

Written on the airplane on the way to Pittsburgh


My soul is worn
Yearning for sleep that doesn't come
Yet, my weariness is
Nothing like hers.

The conversations she has in her heart,
Pondering it all.

What has God whispered to her
During those dark, lonely nights.
The peace in her eyes is but a hint.

Surely, God has heard the
Cries of her heart,
And has answered her.

What does she say to Him
During those dark lonely nights?
The whisper of her heart
To God's ear is surely the
Sweetest of all sounds.

This is Amanda

Originally uploaded by philipco.
Amanda is the girl on the left. See her letter to the choir in the post below.

A greeting from the past

Dear Dr. Copeland and Concert Choir,

I wanted to let you know that I miss everyone and the experience of singing with you. I am very proud of the UAB Concert Choir and excited about its' future. I am considering auditioning and hopefully joining you again in the Spring. I feel as though a big piece of my life is missing and I am almost positive that it is singing in a Choir full of amazing people and fantastic singers. I hope everyone is putting forth their best and enjoying every moment of it. Singing in a Choir like this and with a director like you is truly a once in a lifetime opportunity and it took not being a part of that for me to realize just how important it is to me. Choir is like an escape from the world. It is a haven for expressing individual talent as well as meshing those talents into something awesome. Once again, I hope to join you again soon and best wishes for this fall.

With Love and Support,

Amanda Gorsuch

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Er Ist's Diction Recording

Thanks, Martin, for helping us sound more German.

Here is a recording of Martin speaking the language for us. Listen close.

Cathrine and Claire

Cathrine and Clare
Originally uploaded by BooBear.
Pam, a wonderful person that helps us out at our house, took this picture of the twins. I think it is fantastic.

I Woke Up Haunted: Nightmares for Choir Directors

I awoke this morning thinking about my altos: Why couldn't they sing with energized consonants in the manner that I wanted? The "Dracula Talk?"

Q. Were they refusing to do what I was asking or just not able to do it?

A. I don't think that they would do that, would they?

It must be a matter of fundamentals--basic concepts that I expect the choir to be able to execute on demand. What I forget is that there are a plethora of new people in choir. I haven't locked these concepts into the choir--yet. Expect some concentrated effort on that particular technique in the upcoming rehearsals.

Monday, September 26, 2005

Caroline and Cheerios

Caroline adn Cheerios
Originally uploaded by philipco.
I can't leave out Caroline, of course. Her favorite meal, at least twice a day, is cereal.

Cheerios are her top choice, but other varieties will suffice.

I'm not surprised she loves cereal--we have the same blood type (o-) while the twins are o+. I am a cereal lover, too. My favorite of all time: Kellogs Raisin Bran. Close second: Frosted Mini Wheats.

And now I'm hungry.

My Beautiful Twins

Originally uploaded by philipco.
Pause choir talk for a moment.

I'm a father very much in love with his daughters. Here are Catherine and Claire; they love each other.

Actually, we've entered a phase when the girls are incredibly affectionate and loving towards each other. Leigh and I feel very lucky to have such wonderful girls.

Sunday, September 25, 2005

Thinking about 2008

The UAB Choir made a great showing this past summer at the Tours festival. One of the results from participating in that festival was the invitation to perform at other competitions.

In June, I received an official invitation to sing at the 22nd Annual Bela Bartok Festival this summer 2006. Here was the invitation:

Dear Mr Copeland,

I congratulate you again for your excellent production on Florilege Vocal Tours 2005. I would like to recommend our next competition for your attention. The Bela Bartok International Choir Competition has an important place and a great respect in the international music life. I’m sure it will be a new challange for your choir to participate on our next BBCC in Debrecen/Hungary.

Please visit our web-site:

Hoping for your attention: József Balogh, Secretary of the BBCC

Isn't that nice? I wish that we had the funds to do something like that every summer at a reduced cost to students.

Unfortunately, the Bela Bartok competition is not held in 2007 but it is in 2008. So, I'm looking ahead to then. This year's freshmen would have just completed their junior year. Who knows, Erin Pair might still be around ruling the choir with an iron fist by then.

Just something to keep in our minds as we keep pressing forward to the tasks at hand!

Basque Mythology: Akelarre

Thanks to Katie Movelle (Queen Strange) for the following:


"Basque Mythology: Akelarre

[Akelarre literally means «field of the he-goat»]. The Akelarre is a plain of Zugarramurdi situated in front of the entrance to the cavern called Akelarren-leze «cave of Akelarre». It is believed that, in that spot and in that cavern, the witches of old met. In the vestibule of the cave, at a small height above the floor, a hole opens in the wall like a window, which, as the the neighbors of that locality say, is the hall where the devil, in the figure of a he-goat, received the witches. In the flat floor of the entry and of the vestibule, which preserve the remains of prehistoric homes, the devout of Aker -- or spirit in the form of the he-goat -- met to pay him their worship: adoration, offerings, telling of accounts, acceptance of orders."

Friday, September 23, 2005

Scively gets it . . . again.

Once again, Jennifer Scively is moved by the same text that moves me:

Ever in my life have I sought thee with my songs
It was they who led me from door to door,
And with them have I felt about me,
Searching and touching my world.

It was my songs that taught me all the lessons I ever learnt;
They showed me secret paths,
They brought before my sight many a star
On the horizon of my heart.

They guided me all the day long to the mysteries of the country
Of pleasure and pain, and, at last,
To what palace gate have they brought me
In the evening at the end of my journey?

Her favorite line is my favorite line:
It was my songs that taught me all the lessons I ever learnt;

She remarks: Our songs teach us about ourselves, help us better understand the world around us, and connect us to the divine.

Yes . . after I sing that line in my head, I am definitely connected to something else, whether it is my past . . . or my parents . . . or my children . . . or my future. There is a timelessness in those words. My new songs are teaching me new lessons . . . and the songs I give to my students teach them things that I was taught.

Thank you, Mr. Rabindranath Tagore for teaching me through your words and Mr. Miskinis for the great sounds.

You've got to see this video.

Spirits Spook Troops in New Orleans.

Anyone Interested in a T-Shirt?

I'd like to do a long-sleeve t-shirt this year if you guys are interested.

We've done blue, we've done green. Pick a color and a design and I'll get moving. If we use a new york theme we can include the Women's Chorale.

your ideas?

Thursday, September 22, 2005

3 weeks late for my 1-year anniversary

Somehow I missed my blogging-for-one-year anniversary. First post was on September 3, 2004. So, I'll pause for a moment and note that I've made 279 posts from then until today.


There, the anniversary has been celebrated. Thanks to all those who read and post comments. According to SiteMeter, I'm averaging about 113 visits a day and am about one day away from my 15,000th visit.

Thanks to all who frequent this site.

It is interesting, probably only to me, to review what I said in that first post about blogging:

1. My primary intent is to thoroughly reference some of the things that I talk about in rehearsal. I don't like to take alot of our precious rehearsal time to chase rabbits and tell stories even though a certain amount of that is important.
2. With the "comments" section, you can talk back to me (and discuss with others, of course) about the subjects I bring up.
3. I hope to use the vast online resources as well as my own webpage to help all of us learn more and reference information to make our music more meaningful to us.

Some of the goals have changed over times--nearly everything evolves, doesn't it? I've redefined the purpose of this blog . . . and will try to come up with a list of what I am trying to accomplish here these days through the blog.

For Jonathan

A master's student at Illinois State University is quite interested in blogging for choirs. I'm helping him out a bit with some of my thoughts and I told him that he should contact some of my students to get some of their thoughts on the matter.

From his email:
Of course for our research project I need a certain number of article sources and I have not been able to find any that relate specifically to music education. I have found plenty about educational uses for blogs but none that pertain to Mus. Ed. I guess i am sort of stuck.

I have shown to our choral director some of the blogs that you gave hyperlinks to. She seems very excited about the prospects. Since I am one of her grad. assts. I am sure that will be one of my projects shortly.
I'm giving him this link to a presentation I did on, among other things, blogging benefits for choirs. Warning, it is a large 10 MB file. (presentation i did last summer)

This is a link to my notes/slides from the National ACDA Convention presentation. The one this past summer talks more about the Tablet PC, my latest technological passion.


Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Basque Text Again

Blogger was doing some funny things last night and I had trouble posting.

Here is what I had up for a short time yesterday:

Here is the recording I played in class today. (At least, my plan was to go over this in class today)

Listen closely and put pronunciation guides in your music.

Again, here is the link to the translation of the work and you will note that all the pieces that I have translated are in the column to the right.

Congrats to Sarah Green for writing the text in her music. Everyone else needs to do that ASAP. Or else.

What I Did Saturday Instead of Sing

Duple Triple
Originally uploaded by philipco.
How many of you have been to a triplet birthday party? Leigh and I took our triplets to a birthday party on Saturday since we couldn't sing. The boys on the right celebrated their third birthday.

Claire doesn't look to happy to be there but she perked up later. The cake, from Edgars bakery, was delicious.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005


I was impressed with your work today, choir. The progress seemed slow at first on the Busto #1 but it was really coming together at the end.

On the Busto #2 things were really clicking on the last run-through. Memorize it! Get away from the music ASAP.

New formation for the Over Hill was quite interesting. If you watch Chanticleer in concert, they change formations for every number--or at least, that is what I remember from their last concert. They group themselves into whatever makes the most sense for whatever song they are performing--and it is extremely effective.

Mr. Berg was an observer for this part of the rehearsal and seemed to agree. We'll tweak what we did today and perhaps experiment with other formation possibilities with our music.

Have any ideas?

I'm listening . . .

Monday, September 19, 2005

Choir Bio Fall 2005

I worked up a new choir bio today. This is our new official description:

The University of Alabama at Birmingham Concert Choir

The UAB Concert Choir is the premiere choral ensemble at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. The choir has developed an outstanding reputation across the United States and Europe with recent performances in France and an upcoming performance at the 2006 Southern Regional Convention of the American Choral Directors Association (ACDA).

The choir recently returned from their first tour of France, a trip that featured performances in historic Notre Dame Cathedral and participation in the 34th annual Florlilege Vocal de Tours in Tours, France. The choir won two awards at the competition: the Prix Du Ministère de La Culture, an award given for best interpretation of a French choral work, and shared the top award in the Mixed Choirs Category.

The UAB Concert Choir will combine with the Birmingham Concert Chorale and present Handel's Messiah in December and Mozart's Solemn Vespers in April. Other recent performances of major works include the Requiem by Maurice Durufle' and King David by Honegger, Gloria by John Rutter and Britten's Ceremony of Carols.

Saturday, September 17, 2005

We welcome Jenny to the blog world

It looks like the coast is clear, so we welcome Jenny Harmon to the blog world! Welcome, Jenny!

I know a little more about Jenny than I used to, but I still don't know her very well. What I do know is this: she is dependable, musically talented and a great sight-reader. I'm glad she's here and I look forward to the contributions she will make for many years.

Good luck with everything this year, Jenny!

another freshmen blog

found another freshmen blog, but the post admits a crush . . . .

so i'll wait a couple of days before posting the address in case the author wants to change it . . .

or perhaps, this is the way the person admits the crush to the person?

Friday, September 16, 2005

A change in plans


For reasons that may be explained later, we will not be singing at the event tomorrow morning or on Tuesday at the noon hour.

Let your new plans be this: enjoy your weekend, show up at rehearsal on Tuesday at 1:00 ready to sing great music.


If I Can Help Somebody

Here is a collection of our posts on "If I Can Help Somebody."

Student Reaction: James
Student Reaction: Marybeth
Student Reaction: Chris Reid
Student Reaction: Jennifer
Student Reaction: Holly

It is motivating to the choir director to see the choir contemplating the text and examining their own lives. I am the director of very special people.

Here are my posts on the work:
August 31, 2005
January 17, 2005

If I Can Help Somebody (source of the sermon)
If I Can Help Somebody (choir singing Liebau piece at Grado, Italy competition. 5 MB download)

The words of Dr. Martin Luther King, jr.:

Every now and then I guess we all think realistically (Yes, sir) about that day when we will be victimized with what is life's final common denominator—that something that we call death. We all think about it. And every now and then I think about my own death and I think about my own funeral. And I don't think of it in a morbid sense. And every now and then I ask myself, "What is it that I would want said?" And I leave the word to you this morning.

If any of you are around when I have to meet my day, I don’t want a long funeral. And if you get somebody to deliver the eulogy, tell them not to talk too long. (Yes) And every now and then I wonder what I want them to say. Tell them not to mention that I have a Nobel Peace Prize—that isn’t important. Tell them not to mention that I have three or four hundred other awards—that’s not important. Tell them not to mention where I went to school. (Yes)

I'd like somebody to mention that day that Martin Luther King, Jr., tried to give his life serving others. (Yes)

I'd like for somebody to say that day that Martin Luther King, Jr., tried to love somebody.

I want you to say that day that I tried to be right on the war question. (Amen)

I want you to be able to say that day that I did try to feed the hungry. (Yes)

And I want you to be able to say that day that I did try in my life to clothe those who were naked. (Yes)

I want you to say on that day that I did try in my life to visit those who were in prison. (Lord)

I want you to say that I tried to love and serve humanity. (Yes)
Yes, if you want to say that I was a drum major, say that I was a drum major for justice. (Amen) Say that I was a drum major for peace. (Yes) I was a drum major for righteousness. And all of the other shallow things will not matter. (Yes) I won't have any money to leave behind. I won't have the fine and luxurious things of life to leave behind. But I just want to leave a committed life behind. (Amen) And that's all I want to say.

If I can help somebody as I pass along,
If I can cheer somebody with a word or song,
If I can show somebody he's traveling wrong,
Then my living will not be in vain.
If I can do my duty as a Christian ought,
If I can bring salvation to a world once wrought,
If I can spread the message as the master taught,
Then my living will not be in vain.

Yes, Jesus, I want to be on your right or your left side, (Yes) not for any selfish reason. I want to be on your right or your left side, not in terms of some political kingdom or ambition. But I just want to be there in love and in justice and in truth and in commitment to others, so that we can make of this old world a new world.

Covergirl Classic Red

Katie Movelle, our appointed lipstick artist, informs us that the women's lipstic color of the year is:

Covergirl Classic Red

Thank you, Katie, for your valuable service.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Desta. Busted.

Originally uploaded by philipco.
Welcome to the blog world, James!

Great to have you aboard!

Answer: your big mouth.

Question: how did you find my blog?

Desta the Invisible Shares More IICHS Thoughts

I haven't given up yet, but I still can't find Desta's blog. (found: 9/15) He wants to share with the choir, however, so he sent me an email containing his blog posting so that I can share it with the group. I'll excerpt part of it here and then link to it when I - if I - find it.

Today in choir, I had a personal revelation: I am a bad person.

We talked about the meaning of this song we're singing in which the text is exerpt from a Martin Luther King, Jr. speech. It is entitled "If I Can Help Somebody."

Dr. C-land asked us if we'd thought about it, and since I had just earlier before class (and frequently before), I raised my hand. I started talking, not even really knowing what was going to come out of my mouth, and apparently it was moving. But then I stopped and thought about what I'd said, and I realized I'm a huge hypocrite, and it made me sad.

The thing that hurt the most was the memory of something else that had made me feel horrible about myself . . . And it was then that I had realized I'd become exactly the person that I hated with my very being . . . . Why was I the way I was? I was thoroughly ashamed to be me. To be human. To be alive.

Why is it in our nature to do more harm than good, to destroy more than we create? Why are we so corrupted? This world sickens and disheartens me. No one is true to themselves or those around them anymore, and it does naught but get worse as time passes. Why is it we all claim to want peace, love, happiness, and fellowship when everything we do seems to work against these things?

I remembered all that during class when we started singing through the song the second time, and I was honestly on the brink of tears. It sincerely took everything I had to hold it back and still keep singing with all my heart and soul invested in this beautiful music and its most powerful message - even typing this, these emotions come flooding back to me, and I can hardly believe I was able to avoid a breakdown.

I hope everyone who reads this takes it to heart, because it's the most profound and most important entry I've ever had on here. Please endeavour to understand the simple, yet infinitely complex, beauty of love, and strive to keep it alive. When love dies, so does everything that matters in life.

It is a great post, James, and thanks for sharing it. It looks like great music paired with great words has the power to confront us--the power to make us want to be better than what we are. It takes courage to look in that mirror, doesn't it? And it takes more courage to share what we find with our friends. Great example, James.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

"There's nothing but the song and the song is everything"


That MBV girl is one smart cookie. She may have a ring in her nose but she gets it. She communicates it. She pauses a moment to collect her thoughts, but then the answer comes through loud and clear. I highlighted the part I love. Read the whole thing here.
The only thing that is really important that one person can do in his or her lifetime involves changing other lives, although I can't really give you a concrete factual reason why. Something inside of me vibrates and everything is one thing and I'm a part of it, blended in without me or mine.

I think that's why I like this piece; it's not only saying it, it's showing it. It IS it. When we sing it and we're really feeling it, everything simultaneously dissappears and is everywhere. There's nothing but the song and the song is everything and we're part of everything. It's truth, and everything is okay, and maybe we can touch somebody for a few moments with it.

It was inevitable: Google Blog Search

Check it out.

Technorati plus Bloglines

Originally uploaded by philipco.
Alrighty, here is how the technorati search appears in Bloglines, in case any of you are interested.

You can have technorati search for anything you might like to follow. Bloglines is the way I see if any choir blogs have been updated.

Enough . . . go study your music.

Welcome, John!

Welcome, John!

And, um, nice pic that you've chosen to show the world!

John is a blogger and likes to kill bugs. He also put my Technorati search to the test yesterday. I'd say it did pretty well, eh, John?

I'll post the way it looks from bloglines so you can see how it works.

And John's blue tongue makes a great contrast with Sharon Stone's red lips, doesn't it?

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Red Lips

Yes, women. We wear red lipstick when performing. It might not look good on you individually but it looks good as a group. What worked in France was for someone (Delia?) to buy some red lipstick and everyone used it.

Anyone remember the shade?

Oh . . . It looks good for Sharon Stone, anyway. Product of Google Image Search.

Chanticleer in Huntsville Nov. 27

In the middle of their world tour, Chanticleer visits Alabama. I encourage you to try to make it . . . they are an incredible group and always give a fantastic concert.

03 Yokohama, Japan
Mitato Mirai Hall, 8:00PM
04 Fuji, Japan
Rose Theater, 8:00PM
06 Osaka, Japan
Symphony Hall, 8:00PM
08 Nagoya, Japan
Aichi Pref. Arts Theater, 8:00PM
09 Nagano, Japan
Hall TBA, 8:00PM
11 Tokyo, Japan
Opera City, 8:00PM
27 Huntsville, AL
Trinity Church Auditorium, 4:00PM
28 St. Louis, MO
Cathedral of St. Louis, 8:00PM
29 Cincinnati, OH
St. Peter in Chains Cathedral, 8:00PM

RedFacedAndy Joins Blog World

Chris alerts us to Andy's blog here. He also gave Andy the name "RedFacedAndy." I like it.

Andy has a wonderful tenor voice with some very nice color. He makes a quality contribution to the choir already and now he will share his thoughts with the blogging world.

Welcome, Andy!

You do get the red M&M reference, don't you?



Monday, September 12, 2005

Canterbury Methodist

Looks like Canterbury Methodist will be the church on October 16th. I've not found their website yet but we'll be there on that Sunday. Great church.

And . . Saturday. This Saturday. It looks like we will file on stage around 9:55 AM. That means we'll gather Saturday MORNING at 8:45 AM so start planning your sleep now. Get your Saturday alarm clock ready.

I'm excited about that performance. It will be our first of the year and I'm planning on fielding my best choir ever. Is that what I've got?

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Busted? Well, not really . . .

Clay thinks he "busted" me by telling about my Technorati link. It's been there for months, of course . . . my bloglines subscriptions are all available to the right.

Here's the real secret, Clay: people tell me about the other blogs. "Betrayed by their own, as it were." Here is one email I got:

I've discovered another freshman blog (although I don't know if you've already discovered it)

And here is one from a comment . . . Whitney has Desta's blog.

But it is true . . . Technorati is a pretty neat service. Try it out!

Saturday, September 10, 2005

Oversight Corrected!

Originally uploaded by philipco.
Caroline Lopez Spears, the newly impregnated and former choir member, has a blog. And now, she is listed on our site in the former choir blog member space!

Welcome Caroline, and thanks for all those great vowels!

Friday, September 09, 2005

She couldn't stay hidden

Introducing a new blog: Meredith's.

Welcome, Meredith!

A few things I've learned about her while perusing her blog (one is a lie):

1. Being a music major pretty much controls her life.
2. She wants to learn rock climbing (hmm, reminds me of some baritone)
3. She just lost 60 pounds.

Other news:

1. I know James Desta has a blog, but I can't remember where I saw it.
2. It looks as though our Sunday October 16 concert will be at Canterbury Methodist Church. We'll learn "Praise to the Lord" (Christiansen) for the occasion. (Old members already know it)
3. I'm still smiling from the ChrisCarter-SarahLabriola-MarybethVerchot brief conversation in choir on Thursday. Hilarious.

Thursday, September 08, 2005

Moving Fast and Accomplishing Much

Congrats to this year's choir--you are learning music quickly and sounding very good as you are doing it. We are moving faster than I expected and that means we will soon be masters of the music, the expression, and the message.

Congrats to you.

And thanks to Chris J. who alerted me to placing a conducting post on this blog instead of my other.

Much appreciated!

Cantate Domino

The Cantate Domino that we are singing is quite an interesting combination of two primary texts: Psalm 97 (portions) and the “Victimae Paschali Laudes.”

Click on the links below for more information and my sources for the translation.

The image to the right is from the Latin bible and it is Psalm 97, our primary source of the text.

Here is my translations of the text found in this work. The smart choir member copies this into her music.

Cantate Domino

Canticum novum

Quia fecit mirabilia fecit

Psalm 97:1

Sing to the Lord

a new song

Because He has done wonderful things.

Jubiláte Deo, omnis terra: * cantáte, et exsultáte, et psállite.

Psalm 97:6

Praise the LORD upon the harp; * sing to the harp with a psalm of thanksgiving.

Dic nobis Maria quid vidisti in via?

Sepulcrum Christi viventis

Et gloriam vidi resurgentis

Angelicos testes sudarium et vestes

Surrexit Christus

Additional Information here

And here.

Historical information here.

Tell us, Mary Magdalen,
what did you see in the way?
I saw the sepulchre of the living Christ,
and I saw the glory of the Resurrected one:
The Angelic witnesses,
the winding cloth, and His garments.
The risen Christ is my hope:

Jubiláte in conspéctu regis Dómini: orbis terrárum, et qui hábitant in eo.

Psalm 97:8

Let the sea make a noise, and all that therein is; the round world, and they that dwell therein.

See Psalm 97 in it’s Latin context here.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

CNN and University Education

Interesting post on this blog.

I'll put some of it here, it points to the contrast between how education operates and how CNN operated in bringing us Katrina. Compelling thoughts that may be more interesting to me than to you, but who knows . . . enjoy.

Education: Content comes nearly solely from instructors and "trusted" resources like publishers and "refereed" journals. And content from students would be suspect or written off as "cute" but not useful. Is there an equivalent of Citizen Teaching? If so it is the inspired individual's effort of placing a tutorial or resource on the net.

CNN: Content To Multiple Formats: As content was created in the CNN newsroom, it flowed to multiple formats. Content started as video feeds, became streamed video, text on the website and even a mention for a scroll at the bottom of the screen. Each piece of content was "tagged" as it came into the newsroom, timecoded, meta-tags were added with context and it could be viewed by CNN staff around the world in low-res format. The concept was to see each media object as being highly reusable and redeployable.

Education: Content primarily text, email, PDFs to print, hand coded/Dreamweaver-ed HTML, and.. PowerPoint. Media objects are un-reusable, un-findable, and in-redeployable and would never be available in this kind of time frame.

CNN: Digital News Gathering: The footprint and format for news production is changing radically as the size and mobility of equipment evolves radically. I watched newsfeeds coming from CNN reporters using satellite phones (after the cell network dropped). They were even feeding content that was edited on laptops in the field using Final Cut Pro.

Education: Not much to compare except we do not think of educational content being created "in the field" or with portable devices... while some are moving towards laptops in place of desktop computers, they are used primarily in the same vein (a laptop on the desk). We still print a lot of material or offload this printing to students-- we do not "think"/"operate" primarily in digital, and much of what we do digital is the digital equivalent of print.

CNN: Content Repository: CNN operates a content and media repository that is quite impressive. The content objects are viewable, editable and sharable. Key levels of data is kept for how each object is being used and deployed. Digital Rights Management is tracked, to honor the appropriate use of each media object. I was struck by how easily every CNN staff person could access and work with this content repository.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Randomness and a Good Rehearsal

I'd say things are going very well thus far this year. The choir is sounding great and learning their music. The new people are all contributors and there is a good "feel" to this group. Music is learned quickly and mistakes are, in general, fixed in a timely manner.

My ability to find the weaknesses in the group is starting to pick up, and it is beginning to center around thin/spread vowels: particularly the EE sound but also in various pronunciations of words like then (thehn, not thin) and a few other examples I can't think of right now. As always, the biggest gain in quality from the group will be at the individual level . . . as a group we are doing well . . . it is when we fix individual mispronunciations or spread vowels that this choir will really begin to reach it's potential.

Some other things I really liked today:
  • low C in the basses at end of Cantate Domino: fabulous.
  • the sound of "orbis terra" when we sing soft
  • leadership throughout the choir when they offered up their sections shortcomings on "If I Can Help" (i'm most worried about the Alto line on hep, hep, hep somebody)
  • Andrew Granlunds facial expressions and energy when prompted
Things I wonder about:
  • Does the choir have more volume in them during the huge place in If I Can Help
  • Can we find enough dynamic variation in the same song . . . exploring p to f
  • Am I going to have to speak to a choir member or two about coming in after the beginning of class
I'm also happy that most students are calling me when they are going to be late and when they are going to miss class . . . and they are doing it before they miss, not afterwards. NOW, if I can just instill in the group the ability not to miss or be late at all . . . I will have reached ChoirDirectorNirvana.

Sunday, September 04, 2005

We Thanked Jesus That Night

Here's a brief movie of ITYJ from the Tours competition. A thrilling night, wasn't it!

Watch out . . . it is a big file (12 MB)

I just love this pic

Originally uploaded by philipco.
I don't remember the occasion surrounding this photo, but it seems like Kevin always seemed to have this effect on Lauren--one way or the other.

Movies from Notre Dame

Let's see if this works. Click THESE LINKS to see a couple of movies after the performance at Notre Dame. (and then wait for the download)


Friday, September 02, 2005

Choirs that change the world

I was reading an old post of mine because it is one of the most visited on my site. I think that is because the graphic on the post is frequently brought up on Google's image search engines. Nevertheless, my sentiments are worth considering by the 2005-2006 UAB concert choir.

Now . . . go read it, and enjoy your Labor Day holiday.

MP3's of Basque Text Now Available

Just so you know, we are GREATLY IN DEBT to Maite Stephens, who helped me find a translation to this poem and made the recording. I felt quite lucky to have found someone who speaks Basque--to find someone so incredibly willing to help with recordings and translations is indeed a very special thing.

Thank you, Maite, for your wonderful help.

Now . . . on to the pronunciation and translation:

1st song: Kondairaren Ihauterian (Soinu) Ur goiena.mp3

2nd song: Kondairaren Ihauterian (Dantza) Ur kantari.mp3

Text and Translation:

Ur goiena

ur barrena


akelarre itxurako

illargiaren iturri,

etxe honetan sar dadiela

urarekin osasuna

urarekin osasuna

etxe honetan askatasuna.

Water from above

water from below

fountain of the moon

with form of akelarre

from Saint Johns' night,

that it comes into this house

with the water the health

with the water the health

in this house the freedom

Ur kantari

su dantzari,

biek atxiki behar elkarri.

Singing water

dancing fire,

both have to embrace each other.

We are singing the second and third movements of a 3 movement work. The whole poem is translated this way (so that you have the whole picture).

Through Maite Stephens, we received international help from the former director of the Official School for the Studies in the Basque Language in Bilbao, Spain. (It's a small world, after all!)

The title (Kondairen Ihauterian) translates to: In the carnival of History

The song translates to:

Water from above
water from below
fountain of the moon
with form of akelarre (the circled meeting of witches in the forest)
from Saint Johns' night, (this is the night of June 19th, when in many places across the country people go outside at midnight to make big fires)
that it comes into this house
with the water the health
with the water the health
in this house the freedom

The water kills the fire and
the fire the water,
they are both seeds of life
they are both life-givers.

Singing water
dancing fire,
both have to embrace each other.
Water from above
water from below
I put out the fire
that may be in the rock forest
let it be wood
let it be water
for I put out the fire
from above the water
from bellow the water
from the womb of the water.

***Kondairaren ihauterian is the title of a book of poems.
***The poem "Ur goiena..." derives from a basque folk song that talks about how in the Basque Country, at midnight, on New Year's Eve the town's people would go fetch the "first water" from the main plaza's fountain. They would drink it, because according tradition it was believed to have special powers.

The poem has a last part that says:

Suzko iturri
bizibideko ur
akelarre itxurako
otoitz bizigarria.

Fountain of fire
water road of life
life-giving prayer
with the form of akelarre
of Saint John's night.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Meet Mandy

Originally uploaded by philipco.
Everyone, this is Mandy.

Daily Dose of Whitney

Originally uploaded by philipco.
Ok . . . here is today's Whitney.

Keith is SingingWell and BloggingToo

Somehow I've missed Keith's blog for awhile.

He likes martinis and diet coke and The Electric Company.

Welcome, Keith!

Note the updates in blogs to the right. And, if you have a moment, visit the other college choir blogs:.


I'm headed out this morning to record a woman speaking the text for our Basque piece. Should be interesting!