Come and Sing/Play 2012

Rütti and Whitacre

Directed by 
Richard Roddis

Saturday 21 January 2012
St. Michael and All Angels Church, Bramcote, Nottingham

9.30 am - 5.00 pm

This year, for a change, we spent a day with two contemporary choral composers:

Eric Whitacre, whose music is all the rage at the moment, especially since the invention of his Virtual Choir, and

Carl Rütti - from Switzerland - who was inspired to compose choral music by hearing English choirs.

One of the key attractive features of Whitacre's music is the building up of sound-clusters across the texture - the soundscape is quite dense but sounds wonderfully translucent; it feels like being wrapped up in cotton wool, and exudes a sense of well-being. Try playing a scale on the piano with the sustaining pedal on - this is what he does chorally. In Lux Aurumque it gives the music a golden glow which makes us think of light and angels - exactly what the song is about! 

The Seal Lullaby, inspired by Kipling's tale, proves Whitacre can write a really good singable tune - touching in its simplicity - you'll be humming it for weeks! 
The work that really burst on the scene is Cloudburst, which brilliantly recreates a tropical storm, effected by the singers through an array of novel techniques - be prepared! Other works to be studied: When David heard and Leonardo dreams of his flying machine.

Carl Rütti's choral language has two key features: the building up of excitement through irresistible rhythmic elements, and the intriguing colour of unusual scalic patterns, neither conventional major/minor or modal. We shall study the lilting carol: I wonder as I wander and music from his recent Requiem.

Programme for the day

  • 9.30 Registration
  • 10.00 Rehearsal starts
  • 11.15 Tea / coffee break
  • 11.45 Rehearsal continues
  • 1.00 Lunch*
  • 2.00 Rehearsal continues
  • 3.45 Tea / coffee break
  • 4.15 Performance
  • 5.00 Depart
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