Thursday, June 08, 2006

A Peasant Concert?

We've been rehearsing for our upcoming concert (July 2nd) since last summer, nearly a year. This is going to be one of our "biggies," with the Sapporo Symphony Orchestra, professional soloists, and a conductor from Tokyo. I had been feeling that perhaps we had already peaked, or at least I had. However, over the weekend, the conductor, Michiyoshi Inoue, came up to rehearse with us. Unfortunately, it was the same weekend as the CALL conference (see previous post), and I was terribly disappointed not to be able to rehearse with Maestro Inoue, whom I adore. (This will the 3rd concert I've been in that he's conducted.) However, I'll have other chances at the end of June and beginning of July.

At rehearsal yesterday evening, I noticed a big difference - not necessarily in the quality of the singing, although there was that as well, but a seriousness that had been missing before. Our regular conductor, Nagai-Sensei, had us practice certain sections over and over again until he was perfectly satisfied. Also, everyone was taking scrupulous notes, especially about some changes in pronunciation that Maestro Inoue had introduced. (Carmina Burana, the main piece, is in Latin and Old German.)

The big shocker for me is that we're not going to be wearing our usual concert dresses (for which we paid around $300). Apparently, because both Carmina Burana and the other piece we're doing, Missa Tango, are somewhat like folk pieces, we're supposed to dress like peasants. At least, that's what I gathered from talking with other Sopranos and seeing the display of acceptable blouses and skirts.

They're all BEIGE! Well, earth tones. I gave away all my clothes in those colors when my international women's group had its colors done a couple of years ago. I'm a Winter, as are most Japanese women. Those colors look good on Mediterranean women, who are Autumn. I tried explaining that to a couple of people but, other than blank stares, the reply was that it was what the conductor wants. Well, what does he know? He's a specialist in music, not colors!

When I got home, I scrounged through my closet, and I do have a couple of blouses left that are rather peasanty-looking. I hope they'll do. Keep posted for my peasant look! (And if you live in Sapporo, it's not too late to buy a ticket - but get one from me, since we have a quota!)

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