This is usually my big performance of the year. I gave the
details in my Cantabile Band
post yesterday. For this one, I thought I’d dredge up
some pictures from previous Walks.
I’m certainly not going to have time to post tomorrow morning.
I may post to the spindle later today, or I may wait until I get
home with a picture and post that.
This was last year. The real performance was when we played
for Bonnie in her hospital room. This one was dampened by both
rain and Bonnie dying; one performer had done dropin rehearsals,
and another performer had another event to go to and dropped in
for the first set but had left before this set. The rain actually
stopped by noon, but I don’t think most of us remember it that
way. We did a lot of trios, some of which we’re repeating this
year; I hope it’s more cheerful to sing about walking over hills
an dales and birds singing.
The year before may have been a high point of some sort. We
did a performance of a lot of the same repertoire at the Boston Recorder
Society Play the Recorder Day, and really knew things pretty
well. People had learned some things about how to secure music
and stands from the wind the previous year.
2006 was the year we played at the Jeremiah
Ingalls festival in Vermont, so we put a bunch of shape note
stuff on the program. I think it was an entertaining program if
you liked both listening to music and watching musicians run up
and down the riverbank chasing their music.
2005 was another year it rained, although, again, it really
cleared up pretty well by the time we were playing. But the viol
player didn’t want to get her instrument out, and a less
experienced performer freaked out when I suggested switching some
parts so that I could play bass on the serpent. It wasn’t even
her part I wanted to switch — it was the person she was standing
next to. So now there’s language in the FAQ
about how in a dropin group you have to be prepared to be either
one-on-a-part or not one-on-a-part.
2004 was the year of the best professional coperformers.
It was really hot and two very good recorder players came and
played duets and lots of people stopped to listen to them.
This was a big band performance. I think I made everybody come
to at least one rehearsal, but not necessarily enough rehearsals
for them to have learned the music. And it was a big enough crowd
that it was hard to hear. I think it wasthe year we started having
other groups to help us out, but I got several groups, only some
of whom showed up when and where they were supposed to.
This was a big band where not everybody came to a rehearsal,
and nobody could hear anything from the other end of the group.
It might have been the first year we had the whole day to cover,
and I pretended we could do it with solos, and people had the idea
they should be able to walk to the bathroom (a mile or so away)
between sets. I opened my big mouth at dinner afterwards about
how to run a recorder society, and
that’s how I got stuck doing it for a while.
2001 was the year I founded the Cantabile Renaissance Band.
For two or three years previous to that, I had a fairly good
recorder trio, and we just bought some of the books of recorder
arrangements we knew pretty well and played. I think we were only
covering two hours, and we met regularly anyway without random
people dropping in. The biggest problem I remember was that if
the wind came up and you were facing the wrong direction, the
sound didn’t come out of the tenor recorder. A recorder group
that meets regularly really makes more sense in this context than
the crazy stuff we do now, but I don’t have one of those, and I
don’t know many people who do.