Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Do you miss Charles?

We all miss former choir member Charles Henry.

We're here!

We've been in Cork for about five hours now . . . all have made it safely and are in fairly good moods, considering our lack of sleep and the time change.

There was, we thought, luggage missing (Sam Pace and Chris Josof) . . . and Martin worked for about two hours to retrieve it . . and then they found it in the rental car.

We made all of our connections easily and most members of the group are wandering around the city. Our first rehearsal comes in a couple of hours.

I met John Fitzpatrick, the man running the Cork festival . . . a very nice guy. He took time to talk with me and walk me through the performing spaces, something I really appreciated. We talked about the extremely high level of the choirs that are present for the international competition. He told me there were 30 international choirs that submitted for the festival . . . I was honored to be among them.

We're excited right now . . . a little weary . . . but excited. Think good thoughts for us.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Money $$$

I've got money for UAB Ireland folks.

If the people NOT traveling with us in the morning want their $100 before the trip, show up in the morning and I'll give you cash.

For the Atlanta bound folks, you will get your money and airline ticket when you get on the bus. Have your passport ready to show us to get the money and ticket.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Yellow Forms Due Now

These people must get their form to Ms. Reynolds ASAP:

Her message to me:

Please contact the following students and give them a deadline of 5:00 MONDAY to get their yellow forms to me....we HAVE to have these......

Lori Ayler
Ron Baxter
Jason Leger
Harry Miree
Link Parrot
Maegan Reid
Amber Reid
Jennifer Thorp

Tickets for the Competition and Other Cork Festival Events

The UAB Choir is performing at two events that require tickets on this trip for the non-singers going with us. The non-choir folks will have to purchase tickets to get into the competition and gala (as well as any other event they may want to attend).

We've got a few options:

1. I can purchase them now and you can reimburse me
2. You can purchase them online here
3. You can purchase them when we get there.

Think about it and let me know.

Other relevant details:

We perform at 8:47 on Saturday night of the Fleischmann competition, so the event looks this way on the ticket ordering page:

Saturday, 3/5/08
We perform at 8:47.

There are other tickets for the other event that will involve us: Closing Gala Concert

City Hall, Cork, Back Parterre
Sunday, 4/5/08
We perform at 10:07 p.m.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Very Kind Words

I got this email today and received permission to share it with you. Here's the Christmas recording post he referenced.

Dear Dr Copeland,

Congratulations. You direct one heck of a chorus.

I hope you don't mind that I've downloaded a few of your recordings (even though you probably meant them only for your singers). I first stumbled across them about a year ago, and still have the audio clip of Thompson's "Choose Something Like a Star."

You might have to commit violence against me to make me give it up. It's one of the most insightful performance of the Thompson I've ever heard! That includes four performances that I've sung in with three regional and local symphony choruses over about 20 years, and even the New York Choral Society's commercial recording of the work. Your interpretation has an intensity and conviction that I've *never* heard in any other performance.

The diction is impeccable to boot. Every word is audible.

Minor technical caveat: I only wish the recording didn't cut off so abruptly at the end, before the last note even finishes. I miss that, and the audience's reaction. But that's a minor point.

I'm listening to the Regina Coeli from your recent concert as I type this, and it only boosts my admiration. What a group. What musicianship. Makes me wish I were a student again so I could sing with them.

Carry on, sir. Enjoy each morning's cuppa. And please post information in your blog when your *official* recording is available.

Warm regards,

David Roden
(Member of the Akron Symphony Chorus, Akron OH)

Ireland lips

For the women going to Ireland:

If you have a brownish-red lipstick, bring it on the bus Tuesday. It must be shown to either Erin or Nancy for approval, since we are trying to all wear the same/similar color. If you are returning from last year, bring last year's lipstick with you (Avon, blue tube, called Buttered Rum). Those who have neither will share with a woman who has a lipstick. We will have alcohol to disinfect the lipstick before sharing! If you still have an issue with sharing, I suggest you buy a brownish-red lipstick before Tuesday!

--Erin and Nancy, lipstick divas

Friday, April 25, 2008

What it takes

I posted this on the ChoralNet blog today . . . you may enjoy it . . . what it takes to sing in choir.


One person called this "perhaps the best description of choral music participation that I have ever read."

Take a look at this post and see how one person described what it takes to sing in a choir. A portion of it excerpted here:
Choral scores (for those of you not in choirs) are complex, multi-factored codes from which singers are supposed to produce music. ..not just a sequence of notes, because every mark on the score instructs singers on other things . . .


Then there's the mundane side of things...singers must have the commitment, the discipline, to show up at rehearsals, work during rehearsals, do what it takes between rehearsals to arrive at the next one ready to go. Just showing up counts a lot--the time wasted by those who have skipped, who have to stop and ask questions because they weren't there, who come in late and have to ask what page we're on, who are chatting and not listening so they miss which bit comes next, who forgot their score or their pencil and need to borrow...that time is lost, missing from rehearsals. Choirs benefit from the dependable, the prompt, the prepared, the alert, those willing to concentrate on the work at hand. Individual singers must be committed to sing when they don't feel great, when their feet hurt, when their noses tickle, when their throats might be a little raw, when they've just been fired, when their significant other just got a job 400 miles away.

It's a great post . . .

The Continental Blog

In case you don't know, there is a group of our students that are staying over in Europe after the Ireland tour is over. Martin has named them "the continental's" and Ashley has started a blog to keep up with their travels.

I'm proud of the group and left them this comment:
Welcome to the blogging world, So. Continental's. I'm actually quite proud of the experience you've embarked upon with the post-choir trip. It's a great time to do it in your lives and it will give you a number of stories to share for the rest of your life. Most of all, however, the experience will likely change you in some subtle (and some profound) ways.
Be brave, Continental's! Have fun . . . show appropriate caution . . . take care of each other . . . live life . . . remember you represent us as well as yourselves.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Women's Chorale MP3's

Oh The Beautiful - Aura Lee

Who has rehearsal today?

Concert Choir: Only Ireland People Monday and Tuesday - Come to class WEDNESDAY
Women's Choir: No rehearsal on WEDNESDAY (bring your dresses!)
Chamber Singers: No rehearsal today but YES on WEDNESDAY

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Some Ireland Paperwork and Information

For your information:

Ireland Excuse Memo. (PDF document)

Ireland Performance Schedule (provisional) (word document)

WE WILL TRAVEL BY BUS TO ATLANTA AIRPORT AND LEAVE THE SCHOOL AT 7:30 AM. That's 7:30 in the morning, meeting in front of the Alys Stephens Center (lower entrance)

APRIL 30, MAY 1, 2, 3, and 4
We are at JURY's Inn Cork at this address:
Anderson's Quay, Cork , Ireland
Tel: (+353 21) 494 3000 Fax: (+353 21) 427 6144

MAY 5 and 6
Jurys Inn Christchurch
Christchurch Place
Dublin 8
Phone: 353-1-454-0000
Fax: 353-1-454-0012



Bring your passports tomorrow. Everyone.

Saturday, April 19, 2008


Regina Coeli
Nunc dimittis

So fahr
With a Lily

Star of the County
Silence of Time
He's Got the Whole World

Haec dies
Michelle UPDATED with proper title information for Nancy's Itunes.
Country Dances

Don't miss this

Look here.

Tonight was special . . . .

What a night . . . what a semester . . . what a year.

I was so proud of all my groups tonight . . . it was an honor to stand in front of you and make the music we made tonight.

Chamber Singers arrived at a new place on their music:

1. Haec dies was very good . . .
2. Michelle was better than it has ever been before. Tenors blend was superb . . . you made adjustments in the last two days that changed everything for the better. Congratulations, men.
3. Country Dances was superb. The right tempo, the right dynamic, the right spirit, the right transitions. Way to go.

Women's chorale did exceptionally well. Of all the groups I direct, you made the most improvement from where you began and where you ended. We started with small sounds and unsure singers . . . we ended with bigger sounds and confidence. Way to go . . . I was very proud. Erin did a superb job in her conducting and quiet leadership. A great night.

Concert Choir was especially thrilling. This was a seven-year high point . . . the best we've ever done in a spring concert, I think. It brought back to my mind two other concerts: the new york carnegie hall concert and the first night in Tours competition. Here's what I wrote about the night in France . . . tonight was very similar, except better. We sustained emotion, precision, and energy through seven very difficult musical works.

Leigh thought that the Regina Coeli was the best piece . . . Dr. Jordan said that we sang each work with "complete authority." Both of those comments mean quite a bit to me . . .

My friend Greg Park was impressed with the way the choir took the stage . . . they smiled at the audience and tried to make a connection. Way to go.

Nick Cummins said this in an email to me: I have to say tonight was piece overall: tie between "Nunc Dimittis" and "Regina Coeli" both were just awesome.

Dr. Mostellar told me he was "blown away" and that he'd never heard anything like that in twenty years here at UAB. (i think i'm quoting him correctly) A very kind comment and one that I appreciate very much from him. Dr. Irving was the first one to congratulate me after the concert. I really appreciate the support of those two men.

So . . . as I've now passed 1 AM . . . I think two thoughts:

1. I am glad I said what I did about Dr. Jordan to that crowd tonight. It felt good to talk about his influence on me for so many years to a group that knew him and saw his talent firsthand. It felt right to talk about "the curse" of being in his choir and that I've been working out the musical truths he taught me ever since.

2. I'm extremely proud of my students tonight . . . you rose to the occasion and performed with passion, pride, and power. You sang musically and moved appropriately at the slightest gesture I made. You drew the audience to you . . . they sensed your energy and your commitment to excellence.

It was a special night and one that I will never forget. Congratulations, everyone.

And . . . thanks.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Michael Evans makes contact:

Dr. Copeland,

I just listened to the youtube recording of Dale Grotenhuis’ “Song of Triumph,” and I wanted to write you and say your choir sounds wonderful. Watching the choir made me realize what a special time in my life it was to be in the choir, and I miss it terribly. Tell your students to treasure the time they spend there, for it will be gone before they know it. You are doing a great job; I hope to stop in and listen some time.

Michael Evans

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Eric Whitacre news

You might enjoy this post I just made on ChoralNet's blog about Eric Whitacre's "i thank you God."

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Sunday Recording Session is a YES

The Sunday recording session at Bluff Park Methodist is a YES.

Church open at 6:00, be in place at 7:00. Expected length: 90 minutes.

Directions if you need them.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Birmingham Southern in concert

Birmingham-Southern College Concert Choir Homecoming Performance
Lester Seigel, conductor
Sunday, April 13, 5:00 PM
Canterbury United Methodist Church, 350 Overbrook Road, Mt. Brook AL
Free admission

"If Music Be the Food Of Love"
I. The love of God/Showing God's love for others:

Gloria, from Missa Brevis... Ruth Watson Henderson
Agnus Dei...Thomas Morley
Hymne á la Vierge…Pierre Villette
It Was in That Train…Barry Ferguson
Te Deum for the Empress Marie Therese…Franz Joseph Haydn

II. Love of Nature/Love as Torment:

Ecco mormorar l'onde...Claudio Monteverdi
Non più Guerra, pietate...Monteverdi
Amor, Io Sento L'alma....Morten Lauridsen
Io Piango...Lauridsen
Se per Havervi, Oime....Lauridsen

III. Love From Youth to Age

The Sun is Setting (2006)...Jan Vičar (Three Moravian Folksong settings for women's voices and violin solo; Daniel Szasz, soloist; US premiere)

IV. Plunged Deep in Love

I Am Not Yours...Z. Randall Stroope
Black is the Color of My True Love's Hair...arr. René Clausen

V. Whimsical Love

Soldier, Soldier, Won't You Marry Me?...arr. Robert DeCormier

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Modern art work?

caroline abstract #1, originally uploaded by philipco.

Or a creation of Daughter #2 Caroline?

Sunday, April 06, 2008

Recording sessions and Ireland

I've not scheduled the church or the recording engineer, but I'm headed towards these two dates:

Thursday, April 10, 7-9 pm
Sunday, April 13, 7-9 pm

Please check them out on your schedule and I'll get feedback from you in class tomorrow.

I'll know something from James and the church tomorrow afternoon.

As far as priority, I think I've got to make the recording sessions the most important aspect of what we are doing right now . . . that has the longest term impact of anything that we do. I'm somewhat concerned about how different it will be for the Ireland folks, but we have several days after the Spring concert to solidify music there.

Last week was a great week of rehearsal . . . Tuesday and Thursday were quite superb. I'm pleased with how the music is shaping up for the concert.

Keep it up!

Friday, April 04, 2008

Copeland Triplets do Brio

What I did tonight. This is night #2 of keeping the girls by myself. Leigh is away for the weekend.

Thursday, April 03, 2008

The good news keeps a-coming . . . . .

More evidence for what I already believe to be true:

Coffee may cut the risk of dementia by blocking the damage cholesterol can inflict on the body, research suggests.
The drink has already been linked to a lower risk of Alzheimer's Disease, and a study by a US team for the Journal of Neuroinflammation may explain why.

A vital barrier between the brain and the main blood supply of rabbits fed a fat-rich diet was protected in those given a caffeine supplement.

UK experts said it was the "best evidence yet" of coffee's benefits.
That's exactly what I need . . . a barrier for my high fat diet.

Martin Creates Incredible Spreadsheet

Taking over a task too large for my little mind, Martin has created an excel spreadsheet that reveals the best times for the Ireland choir to have an extra rehearsal or two.

I've loaded up to my Google Documents and made it available for online viewing here.

Nine people still need to contribute:
Lori Ayler
Ron Baxter
Matthew Cantor
Jeremy Concepcion
Alex Fencanin
Jenny Harmon
Harry Miree
Matthew Russell
Crystal Whatley

Martin has indicated that these are our best times for rehearsal:

THURSDAY, APRIL 10, from 1930 until 2200
SUNDAY, APRIL 13, from 1930 until 2200
MONDAY, APRIL 14, from 2000 until 2200
THURSDAY, APRIL 17, from 1900 until 2200 (we won't use this one)

Thanks for the work, Martin. You are a special guy.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

National Competition for Schools (for Nancy)

There are other competitions going on in Cork as a part of their festival.

Look here.

We're going to be one of the INTERNATIONAL choirs singing at the NATIONAL competition.

Someone loves me

To the anonymous giver of the Hot Tamale's (and pepsi) . . . Thanks!

Ireland: The Concerts

National Competition of Schools Concert:

Song of Triumph: D. Grotenhuis (1931 - )
Silence of Time: Darmon Meador (1953 -)
Star of the County Down: B. Parry (1965 - )

Carrignafoy Community College, Cobh, Co. Cork Concert:

Regina Coeli : Romuald Twardowski B. 1930
Nunc Dimittis: Gustav Holst 1874-1934
So Fahr Ich Hin Zu Jesu Christ: Heinrich Schutz 1585-1672
Song of Triumph: Dale Grotenhuis B. 1931
Lord’s Prayer: Arr. Jerry Jordan B. 1946
With A Lily In Your Hand: Eric Whitacre B. 1970
Star of the County Down: Arr. Ben Parry B. 1965
Silence of Time: Arr. Darmon Meador B. 1953
He’s Got the Whole World: Arr. Raymond Liebau B. 1937

Fleischman International Competition:

Regina Coeli: Romuald Twardowsky (b. 1930)
Nunc Dimittis: Gustav Holst (1874-1934)
So fahr ich hin zu Jesu Christ, SWV 379: Heinrich Schütz (1585-1672)
With a Lily in Your Hand: Eric Whitacre (1970 - )

Farewell Gala Concert:

Star of the County Down: arr. Ben Parry (1965 - )
He’s Got the World in His Hands: arr. Raymond Liebau (1937 - )

Ireland Performance Schedule

APRIL 30, 2008
Rehearsal: 8:00 p.m. in Hotel if possible

Event 1:
Event: 1st May 2008, PUBLIC PERFORMANCE, Bishopstown Library, Cork
Event Time: 11am
Choir Performance Time: 11am

Event: 1th May 2008, NON-COMPETITIVE, Nat. Comp. for Schools, Section 3, City Hall, Cork
Event Time: 2.30pm
Choir Performance Time:

Event: 2nd May 2008, SCHOOL CONCERTS, Carrignafoy Community College, Cobh, Co. Cork
Event Time: : 11.30am
Choir Performance Time: 11.30am

Event: 2nd May 2008, PUBLIC PERFORMANCE, Jury's Inn Hotel, Cork
Event Time: 5pm
Choir Performance Time: 5pm

City Hall, Cork
Event Time: 8pm
Choir Performance Time: 8.47pm

Event: 4th May 2008, MASS, St. Michael's Church, Blackrock
Event Time: 12pm
Choir Performance Time: 12pm

Event: 4th May 2008, ADJUDICATION & AWARD CEREMONY, City Hall, Cork
Event Time: 5pm-6pm

Event: 4th May 2008, FAREWELL GALA CONCERT, City Hall, Cork
Event Time: 7.30pm
Choir Performance Time: 10.05pm

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Setting up recording sessions

There's always too much to do, however, there are goals that we have as an ensemble.

One goal is to release a CD very soon.

To do a CD, we need recordings . . . to do recordings we need recording sessions. I want you to put these dates on your calendar, pending department and church and recording technician:

Concert Choir:
Thursday, April 10, 7-9 pm
Sunday, April 13, 7-9 pm
Monday, April 14, 7-9 pm
Tuesday, April 15, 5-7 pm (releasing in time for Wind Symphony concert)

Chamber Choir:
Monday, April 14 4-6 pm