[cantabile] Report on April 19 coaching session with John Tyson

Rehearsal log

A very productive evening. We did:

  • Clear or Cloudy
  • Changeons Propos
  • Now is the month of Maying
  • My love hath vowed he will forsake me
  • The Silver Swan

Decision log

We made some decisions:

  • Dynamics in Now is the Month of Maying: Second verse, loud on “and
    to the bagpipes sound” and soft on “the nymphs tread out the ground”;
    Third verse: soft on “say dainty nymphs and speak”; crescendo through
    “shall we play barley break”.
  • Parts on Silver Swan — Paul will not play cornetto the first time
  • Key on Silver Swan will be D rather than Eb. This means that if
    you’re playing on the instrumental, you should print out your part
    especially if you’re playing quintus or altus, which had errors in
    them when I looked. (The errors had been fixed in the source, but the
    fixes hadn’t made it to the pdf.)

More decisions

We have some more decisions to make; input is welcomed.

Program order.

I’ve listed the sets as:

  • May music
  • Drinking music
  • river music
    • Swans
    • Babylon

This gives us our typical “Begin with Morley and end with Billings”,
but means that there’s a lot of pretty serious music at the end. Also,
if I mistime the program, we may play the wrong number of rounds in
the Drinking songs set.

So I think it might make more sense to do:

  • May music
  • Swans
  • Drinking songs
  • Babylon

Let me know what you think.


I think we were starting to be a bit top-heavy last night. Some of
this is that people weren’t really looking at their part assignments,
and I had other things to do than policing them. I’m sure I attempted
to move either Patricia or Anne to the second line whenever there would
otherwise have been Patricia, Anne, and Paul on top and only me on

I don’t want to make anyone do a part they aren’t comfortable with,
and the balance will be so different outdoors that it’s hard for us to
make reasonable decisions anyway. But if you’re ok with the move, I
think it would be better to at least try the decisions I made on

On “My love hath vowed”, I was expecting everybody to sing the B
section and the fourth verse A section (not just the people listed for
vocal solos). I was also thinking we might have instrumental support
on the top line. I’m assuming the people who weren’t singing or
playing had neglected to print the music out. Please do so (or ask me
to) by Tuesday, so we can play with this a little.

I will be posting a final order with updated part assignments
before the Tuesday meeting, so let me know what you think about any of
this by Sunday.


Remember that the rehearsal on April 26 starts at 7:45 PM, and
people who need to do setup and tuning should arrive in time to do it
before the start time.

The May 1 schedule is:

  • 10:30 – 10:45 Laura solo
  • 10:45 – 11:30 Ishmael dance music, including others as he
    considers appropriate. Let him know if you want to be included
  • 11:30 – 12 Laura and Bonnie, Morley duos
  • 12 – 12:30 Quilisma Consort
  • 12:30 – 1:15 Cantabile Renaissance Band
  • 1:15 – 1:45 Quilisma Consort
  • 1:45 – 2:30 Cantabile Renaissance Band
  • 2:30 – 3:00 Greatest hits from previous sets whose performers
    are still there

If you aren’t playing the morning sessions, arrive as soon after
noon as possible, so that we can be set up and ready to go as soon as
Qulisma finishes their set.

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