Archive for the ‘Fall 2010’ Category

Orchestra Notes

Saturday, November 13th, 2010

Dr. Whitmire’s notes to the orchestra for Judas: Orchestra Notes (.pdf)

On with the snow

Friday, November 12th, 2010

Handout from November 9 rehearsal:
On with the snow sheet music (.pdf)

Please note that the text beginning in measure 34 is incorrect.

Voice Recital

Friday, November 12th, 2010

From Chorister Peggy:   Sam Howell is a NOVA music major, and chorus baritone who is not singing with us this semester.  See the information below about his recital next Wednesday at 7:30 in the room we rehearse in, with Chris Hagan on the piano.

From Accompanist Chris:  Could you send an announcement out to the chorus about Sam Howell’s voice recital, which is next Wednesday, November 17 at 7:30 in Room 130?  He’s been in the chorus, studies w/ Rex Gori, I’m going to be accompanying him.  It’s going to be a wonderful performance and it would be great to support him.

Alto Rehearsal Update

Friday, November 12th, 2010

(11/10/2010) From Chorister Debbie:  Here’s the schedule of extra Alto rehearsals at Ellie Briscoe’s home:
Dec 21, Dec 28, January 4
(Ellie also plans to create a flyer with this information.)

From Ellie:
Altos: optional Verdi learning sessions
Where: Ellie Briscoe’s home, about ten blocks from NVCC campus
When:7:30 – 9:00 pm on three Tuesdays: December 21, 28, January 4
Allergy warning: I have cats.  Non-altos are welcome also but we will be using the alto practice CD.

Directions from NVCC to 1709 Stonebridge Road, Alexandria
Go east on Braddock from campus. Go up the hill (through a traffic light), down the hill and under 395 (and through a second light), and up the next hill to the third traffic light, turn right onto Howard St. Take the fourth right onto Loyola; go to the end and turn right onto Stonebridge. 1709 is the first house on your right on Stonebridge, two-story brick-fronted house with a porch, and a rock by the curb that says “1709.”
If coming north on Howard from Seminary, Loyola is the first left. Note that you cannot see the Loyola street sign behind the BIG tree.

In case you get lost: phone is  703 461 7383.

10th Rehearsal Preview

Tuesday, November 9th, 2010

From Dr. Whitmire:  Dear Singers-
Welcome to our 10th rehearsal of Fall 2010! Please sign in.

At this table
, take a copy of On with the Snow

Inside pick up Verdi Requiem Rehearsal CDs. The 2-CD set is $10. Make checks to NVCC Foundation.

Absentee Auditions Tonight
If you have miss more than two rehearsals as of tonight, please stay to audition for me to demonstrate preparedness. If you are not sure of your absences, see your Section Leader.

All Soloists please stay after rehearsal tonight.

Optional Alto Rehearsals

Tuesday, November 9th, 2010

From Section Leader Debbie:  Ellie has suggested and offered to host VERDI rehearsals… See
below.   Please let me know your interest in participating by reply to: deborah_peetz [at] rand [dot] org

From Ellie:  Since we know most people don’t have standing commitments on Tuesdays, how’s about in December after chorus is over, I host Tuesday “Verdi” sectionals, to sing through the Requiem and get somewhat familiar with it?  People will already have the practice CD.  I could open that to sopranos, too, or even
anyone who wants to come; then maybe we’d have half a dozen folks show up.

Or, I could set them up for Mondays, and begin next week; if he keeps telling us which movements he’s going to work on we can anticipate them.

We have I think four class sessions left before the end of chorus, and the second performance of “Judas” is after the last one.

J. Reilly Lewis Messiah

Tuesday, November 9th, 2010

(11/6/2010) From Chorister Fred:  Singers,
This is THE Messiah singalong you want to participate in. J. Reilly Lewis, conductor of several major choral groups (Cathedral Choral Society, Washington Bach Consort, etc.) has presented this work in his own church* for the last 38 years. Professional orchestra and soloists, too!! You’ll be surrounded by hundreds of first class singers.

Hints: It is always sold out so go early and find your friends from NOVA Chorus.
Besides, there is usually a little concert before the main attraction.
Oh, yes – a reception after.
Check out the attached poster (.pdf).
suggested donation is $20 to help out with the professional singers and orchestra

How great it is to just sing this work without attending any rehearsals. If you have never sung it before or once or twice or what seems like a million times, it’s for you. Bring friends who can’t sing. What better way to experience a great work than in live, HD, high fidelity surround sound.

*Clarendon United Methodist church
606 North Irving
Arlington, VA 2220


Saturday, November 6th, 2010

From Dr. Whitmire:  Dear Singers-
-Thanks to all the men who came to today’s rehearsal. We got some excellent work done.
-Reminder: Absentee Auditions are this Tuesday at the end of rehearsal
-Bring your Verdi Requiem this Tuesday. We will rehearse Movement I: Requiem and Kyrie
I will have rehearsal CDs. The 2-Cd set will be $10 cash or check
-I will also hand out On with the snow, a medley we will sing with the Band on 12/09.

PS- I saw Tony Bennett sing this song last night with this same band. Coolest ever. Enjoy.

Judas Women Auditions

Saturday, November 6th, 2010

(11/4/2010) From Dr. Whitmire:  Dear Singers-

Thanks to all the women who auditioned for solos in Judas Maccabaeus. We heard 30 sets of auditions- mostly duets. Thanks to Chris for all the notes.

It was great to hear everyone; for some it was their first audition ever. For me it was a very tough job: I was looking for a clear, baroque quality of voice that is ample enough to fill a hall and at the same time matching voices that might sound good together.

So that I could include more singers I have selected two sets of soloists as you see below. [Edited for privacy]

What a wonderful group of singer you all are. I am honored to be able to work with you.

9th Rehearsal Preview

Tuesday, November 2nd, 2010

From Dr. Whitmire: Dear Singers,
Welcome to our 9th rehearsal of Fall 2010! Please sign in.

Thanks again to all the Men who auditioned last Tuesday.
Duet # 48
Robles, Francisco; Brown, Bill

Men’s Chorus  #50
Connors, John; DeHart, Jon; Gerbracht, Bob; Goldschmidt, Larry; Reilly, Bill; Robles, Francisco; Scott, Andrew; Brown, Bill; Bunner, Alan; Clark, John; Homayouni, Brandon; Kennedy, Richard; Krause, Alan; Robertson, Al

Solo # 58
Scott, Andrew

Tonight’s Rehearsal – #4 to #25

AuditionsTonight (11/2) at the end of rehearsal I will hear auditions from WOMEN for #18, #30 and #58 (alto)

Absentee Auditions –Next Tuesday 11/9
If you have miss more than two rehearsals as of next week, please prepare to audition for me to demonstrate preparedness. If you are not sure of your absences, see your Section Leader.

Cathedral Sings

Tuesday, November 2nd, 2010

(10/31/2010) From Chorister Fred:  Cathedral Sings: the Faure Requiem conducted by Reilly Lewis
Sunday, November 7, 2010, at 7:30 pm
Washington National Cathedral

At the above address the price is $10 but it is $11 when you click on the link to purchase a ticket on line. You can bring your own music or I believe that you can rent the music there for a fee. I always park about 2 blocks away and walk to the Cathedral but there is an underground parking lot and some next to the door if you are REALLY early.

You can make it a really full afternoon with the other events just before the sing along:
1:30 PM  Close-up Tour: Gothic Architecture – $5
3:30 PM The Fairfax Choral Society of Fairfax, VA sings a choral prelude to Evensong.
4:00 PM Choral Evensong

Cathedral Dean Samuel T. Lloyd III, preacher. The Cathedral Choir of Men and Girls.

5:15 PM Organ Recital: Sergio Militello with guest organist Sergio Militello of Florence, Italy $10 donation suggested

Soprano Rehearsal

Monday, November 1st, 2010

(10/30/2010) From Chorister Sara: Hi all, Since this afternoon during the women’s rehearsal Mark suggested that he would like the sopranos to get together and rehearse before Tuesday evening, I am inviting all sopranos to meet at our house (Bob G. and Sara D. B.) on Monday evening at 7:30 p.m. I’ll supply the iPod and speakers, piano backup, and some goodies for a refreshment break during rehearsal. There is plenty of on street parking, plus you can park in our driveway. Our neighbors won’t complain if you park in front of their houses.

If you can, please let me know if you are coming so I can put plenty of chairs out. We can seat 20+ fairly easily (we have lots of family and grandchildren).

Directions are attached to the original e-mail. [Admin: edited for privacy. Please contact sdbg [at] cox [dot] net for more information.]

See you on Monday evening.

Judas Flyer

Wednesday, October 27th, 2010

From Chorister Carolyn: . . . I will bring some next Tuesday mounted on colorful paper, and will ask for volunteers to place them in specific “high impact” locations. I’ll try to do some of that before 7:30, but may need some time before the break as well.

. . . I think it best to wait until after Halloween to begin the publicity. It’s not a good idea to start too soon as people forget.

Men’s Auditions

Wednesday, October 27th, 2010

From Dr. Whitmire:  Dear Singers- I was so very pleased to have such a fine group of men audition tonight. We have some wonderful voices. Here are the results [Please see e-mail for listing]:

I look forward to hearing women next week

8th Rehearsal Preview

Tuesday, October 26th, 2010

From Dr. Whitmire:  Dear Singers-
Welcome to our 8th rehearsal of Fall 2010! Please sign in.

Brava! for the 12 women who gave 2 fine performances of The Planets. Special thanks to Chris who subbed in on soprano I on the second performance.

Thanks again to Chris and David Hagan
for their wonderful program last Tuesday and to each of you for to showing up with your friends and supporting the Vocal Scholarship so generously. We raised over $2000.00! We will be able to provide a full scholarship to one of our voice majors again next year.

Tonight – Judas #25 to the end

AuditionsTonight (10/26) at the end of rehearsal I will hear auditions from MEN for #48, #50 and #58 (tenor)
Next week (11/2) at the end of rehearsal I will hear auditions from WOMEN for #18, #30 and #58 (alto)

Absentee Auditions –Tuesday 11/9
If you have miss more than two rehearsals as 11/9, please prepare to audition for me to demonstrate preparedness. If you are not sure of you absence, see your Section Leader [Admin: See Performance Tips for contact information].

Sing Well -DrW

Berkshire Choral Festival

Tuesday, October 26th, 2010

From Chorister Grace:  The Berkshire Choral Festival has opened its online applications for the 2011 summer season.  The web site is  The 2011 season includes one week in Vancouver, June 15-23, performing Voices of Light with the Anonymous 4 and conductor Tom Hall; 4 consecutive one-week sessions in Sheffield, Massachusetts, starting July 10th and including Mendelssohn’s Elijah and the Monteverdi Vespers and conductors such as Robert Page and Kent Tritle; and one week in Salzburg, Austria, September 9-18, performing Haydn, Mendelssohn and Brucker with conductor Thomas Bottcher.  An audition CD is required for the Monteverdi week.  Music and rehearsal CDs are sent out in the spring and the one week session is spent on polishing the nuances.  Choristers have most afternoons free to sight-see in the local area, with rehearsals scheduled in the morning and evening.  BCF also offers opportunities for scholarships as well as apprenticeships for those studying for degrees (undergraduate or graduate) in music.


Tuesday, October 26th, 2010

From Chorister Bill: is a website for choral singers.  In the two years that I have been using the site, I have found several interesting, helpful articles.  Some of the articles are “open access”, others require that you be a subscriber ($19.95/yr) in order to open them.

SingerNetwork is just launching a video series on IPA (International Phonetic Alphabet) for singers.  IPA is a useful tool for choral conductors and singers, and this seems like a painless way to learn more about it.  The series will be using examples from Handel’s Messiah to illustrate the information about IPA.  The first video on IPA is “open access”; it is purely introductory.  I do not know if the subsequent instructional videos will be “open access” or for subscribers (I suspect the latter).  In any event, I thought I would pass this information along in the event that some of you might be interested.

Judas Maccabaeus Auditions

Friday, October 22nd, 2010

From Dr. Whitmire:  Dear Singers,
As you know, the following solos in Judas are open to members of the chorus, who will be selected by audition.
44 | 18 | Duet (S-A)* | Come, ever-smiling Liberty
80 | 30 | Duet (S-S)* | Sion now her head
127 | 48 | Duet (T-B)* | O never bow we down
139 | 50 | Air (5 men)* | Father of Heaven
155 | 58 | Duet (A-T)* | Sing unto God

Auditions for men [Father in Heaven, and Sing unto God (tenor), and O never bow down]will be this Tuesday 10/26. We will go through them briefly this Saturday following the men’s rehearsal for those who are interested in auditioning.

Auditions for Women [Come ever smiling liberty. Sion now raise, and Sing unto God (alto)] will be next Tuesday 11/02.

I will be looking for well-prepared singers who have solo-quality voices that can reach over a full orchestra.

I hope that many of you will audition.

Saturday Performance

Friday, October 22nd, 2010

From Chorister Peggie:  Here’s information about a Saturday performance featuring Grace Gori, former NOVA faculty member and wife of current NOVA faculty member and our Judas Maccabeus baritone soloist, Aurelius Gori.  [More information can be found at]

Dear Friends,

I wanted to let you know about a fun evening of music, dance and poetry coming up this Saturday night at the GALA-Tivoli Theater.  I’ll be helping the In Series celebrate its 10th anniversary as an independent arts series here in the DC area.  The evening’s potpourri of performances will include highlights from these years, representing a sampler of the many great performances In Series has produced during this time.   Myself, I’ll be singing one of the duets from Cosí fan tutte goes Hollywood, a quintet from Die Zauberflöte, and the card trio from Carmen…not to mention enjoying the performances of my many other talented colleagues!

It should be a great time; let me know if you can make it!

Thanks and Happy October —
Grace Gori

Recital Follow Up

Thursday, October 21st, 2010

From Dr. Whitmire:  Dear Singers-What a wonderful recital on Tuesday night. Thanks to Chris and David for a unbelievable program! And what a wonderful group of people you are to show up with your friends and to support the Vocal Scholarship so generously. My goal was to raise $2000.00 and you raised $2030.00! We will be able to provide a full scholarship to one of our voice majors again next year. Thanks!

We have a Men’s Rehearsal this Saturday 1:00-2:15 pm
We have a Holst Rehearsal (12 women) this Saturday 2:30-3:00 pm

Band Concert This Thursday

Wednesday, October 20th, 2010

I know everyone enjoyed the fine concert by Chris and her brother last night. It would be wonderful to extend the musical week and come to the band concert this Thursday night. The band is being joined by the Prince William concert band and two fine soloist from the Military Bands–Clarinet and Percussion. The percussion soloists plays Flight of the Bumble Bee faster than any one I have ever heard!  Concert is at 7:30 pm. and will be finished around 9:30  pm. Thanks -W

Wendy K. Matthews, Ph.D.
Assistant Dean and Assistant Professor of Music

Alto Rehearsal

Monday, October 18th, 2010

From Chorister Ellie:  The time for next Sunday has not changed, only the location, so my original
proposal stands:  Rehearsal at my house for Judas from 2 – 4 pm.

Note about “See the Conquering Hero”:  I have written Soprano on the top line and Alto on the second line in my
music so, unless there has been a change, all of the women are singing about Conquering Heros.

Revised Schedule

Saturday, October 16th, 2010

Dear Singers- Good morning! Below [linked] is a revised schedule (.pdf). Please take particular note of changes marked in red. See you later today.

Rehearsal Reminder

Thursday, October 14th, 2010

From Dr. Whitmire:  Dear Singers-

-Please do not miss our Judas Maccabeaus rehearsal this Saturday 1:00-2:30 pm.
-Don’t forget, our Scholarship Fundraiser, a recital by Chris and David Hagan, is this Tuesday, October 19 at 7:30 pm. I’d like each of you to bring at least 2 guests. They will be glad you did.

Women’s Chorus for Holst
By all accounts, Sunday’s Dress Rehearsal was a disaster. Therefore I must take steps to give us the best chance for a credible performance. I am reducing the choir to two on a part. I am very sorry to have to cut some of my women from the concert, but I am forced to resort to drastic steps. The Reduced Women’s Chorus that you see below will rehearse this Saturday at noon. You must attend to sing in the concerts. If you are in the Reduced Women’s Chorus below, please respond and let me know that you will be at this rehearsal.

Choir I
Soprano 1- Terri LaGoe (10/17), Chris Hagan (10/24), Michelle McHugh
Soprano 2-Peggy Harrison, Lene Jensen
Alto-Debbie Peetz, Dorothea Kamara

Choir II
Soprano 1-Jill Meyer, Judy Robb
Soprano 2-Shellie Grant, Barbara Lowrey
Alto-Ellie Briscoe, Annette Reilly

I look forward to seeing everyone on Saturday. We will rehearse all of Judas.

Free Tickets for Cathedral Choral Society

Wednesday, October 13th, 2010

From Chorister Jane:
French Connections – Sunday, October 17 at 4 p.m. – Washington National Cathedral

This coming Sunday spend the late afternoon with us and our Maestro Reilly Lewis at Washington National Cathedral – the sixth largest cathedral in the world – enjoying the sound of the magnificent Great Organ, which can be experienced nowhere else in our city, letting your senses wrap themselves in the glorious light fading through the stained glass windows and playing off the soaring columns, as your ears are filled with the lushly beautiful sounds of choral gems from France and Belgium in our opening concert French Connections….

And, here’s the deal. If you have never been to our concerts before to experience this glorious music in this glorious setting, we’ll give you two free tickets! What could be better than this free, absolutely no-risk offer? Hurry because it will be limited to the first 200 people to take us up on it!

For more information, click here.