NOWLEDGE GAINED by experience: nothing else can replace this. A presenter could talk for 30 years about “how to train a choir well”—but even that would not replace the actual experience of standing in front of a choir. Anyone with an internet connection can pontificate about choral music—yet almost instantly I can tell if the pontificator has ever stood before a choir in real life. Those who have experience conducting amateur choirs realize that choir rehearsal is like entering a “time warp.” Time moves so quickly, it’s as if rehearsal is over as soon as it begins!
Practical Application: Because of this reality, there’s limited time to work on choral vowels, blending, rhythm, pitch, dynamics, pronunciation, and so forth. Therefore, we often follow the 1958 document of Pope Pius XII, which wisely stated: “In general, it is better to do something well on a small scale than to attempt something elaborate without sufficient resources to do it properly.” Of course, if you have infinite rehearsal time, it would be different—but how many of us have sufficient rehearsal time?
Part 2 of 3: On 23 May 2021, I spoke about a possible way forward in Part 1. Now, I am happy to announce that the “Christe” section is ready—and it is one of the most beautiful compositions I have ever heard, although it’s surprisingly brief:
* PDF • Father Guerrero “Kyrie Part 2”
—Taken from “De Beata Virgine II” — Edition: Roma 1582AD.
Rehearsal videos for each individual voice await you at #63503.
Notice the very clever way Father Guerrero uses the plainsong motif from Kyrie IX:
Until my choir learns Part 3, we are singing Part 1 (“Kyrie”) twice, Part 2 (“Christe”) twice, and Part 1 (“Kyrie”) once. Please see the link I mentioned above—viz. Part 1—if you are having trouble understanding how we sometimes learn these compositions “piecemeal.”
Please go explore #63503 — I think you will really appreciate what’s there, and also Part 1 is conveniently located right above it. Please go there!
Click here to learn about a special portrait of Father Guerrero that Corpus Christi Watershed commissioned from a Russian artist in 2016: