Friday, April 06, 2012

The World Premiere

A month or so ago Luke pulled me aside and asked me if I wanted to sing alto for an ensemble that she and Igor (One of our preachers) were trying to create. Apparently all the other altos they'd talked to were busy or weren't in-shape singing wise. I was quite honored to be asked and so I agreed.

It was a very interesting life choice.

I actually enjoy the ensemble more than I do choir. I'm not sure if it's the music, or the people involved, or the challenge. Let me tell you what, the ensemble has been a challenge. For those of you who don't know, singing as one of four people is completely different than singing with a group. Just saying. If I thought it was hard just being in choir, this is more intense.

Again, not only do I have to memorize songs in Russian, Alto parts, and correct singing posture and breathing, but also some of the songs we sing in ensemble are a lot more complex than what we sing in choir. In addition, (This is partly because we only had a month to prepare for the Easter season) we had to learn the parts quickly and we have to make sure they sound good. In choir if you don't know the part, you can just not sing as loud and it's okay, but in the ensemble, every part counts.

Having said all that, today was a big day for our little quartet. It was our first performance. We were invited to go to a hospice for children with cancer and sing for them. Originally there were supposed to be five children there, but some were away so there were only two. We thought about rescheduling but then decided since we had planned on it, we should go. So we did.

It was worth the trip. At first, it was a little awkward. I think the staff and kids were a little wary of us and I know, I was a little wary of them. I'd been nervous ahead of time because I'm not good with very ill people, hospitals, nursing homes, things of that nature and so I wasn't quite sure what to expect at the hospice. It was a nice place though, a big three story house that felt nothing like any of the above-mentioned places. It was even hard to believe that the kids we met belonged in hospice.

My adrenaline was up as well because of the whole performance thing. There were some places that I messed up, pretty badly. But the important thing was that we were there and we were singing. By the end of it, I was more relaxed and the singing came easier.

We sang for about twenty minutes, then we took pictures and then we had chai. One of the kids who was there today was a 14 year old girl named Sasha. It was really fun to get to talk with her. She seemed interested in the fact that I was American and had some questions for me. I forget that it's kind of an interesting thing to be a foreigner since the people at church have gotten to know me, and I've gotten used to being here so I don't really feel foreign. We took gifts for the kids as well. Little candy bouquets and Easter Chicks that Luka's roommate made, and then we took them each a little craft kit as something fun for them to do.

Our little group was very well pleased with the way things went and we hope we were able to bless the kids and the staff at the hospice. I know being able to sing for them was definitely a blessing and encouragement for me.

We're planning on going back next Friday when hopefully the rest of the kids will be there.  

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hi. Just curious what church you're representing? My wife and I get to SPbg usually every year or two, where she has family. We're Orthodox Christians. Maybe we can pay you a visit next time we're over there?