On a Christmas music roll

I love the feeling at Christmas time. Getting ready for the 2017 Montgomery Interfaith Nativity has really put me in the Christmas music mood that I have been playing some clips and past television programs. 

The MoTab always has a variety of musical talent every year. Usually they focus on classical singers one year and then more contemporary/broadway artists the next.  Richard Elliot at the organ is absolutely fascinating to watch and listen to in this clip as he interacts with Count von Count from Sesame Street:

Perry Como specials were always fun to watch back in the day. 

And of course Andy Williams always had a marvelous program too. 

One of my favorite memories is the story of The Christmas Truce, featuring the hymn Silent Night: 

On that note, enjoy The Story of Silent Night here.



Trying to learn a song in French

I am pretty nervous and excited about the opportunity to sing on Thursday, November 30th at 6:30 p.m. for the 2017 Montgomery Interfaith Nativity in Montgomery, Alabama. My friend, Tina Gann, has graciously agreed to accompany me. She is a fabulous accompanist and quite the accomplished pianist. We will be getting together this week to talk about our twenty minute musical lineup.

One of my favorite songs we are definitely performing is Gesu Bambino, text by Frederick Herman Martens, music by Piertro Alessandro Yon, and edited by Charles J. Cardin.

Another song I want to sing is Bring a Torch, Jeanette Isabelle however I would love to learn it in French as originally published, Un Flambeau, Jeanette, Isabelle. 

Today I have been listening to two different YouTube versions of the song in order to translate the French phonetically so I can learn the pronunciation. Then, I will have my French-American CrossFit Coach Charles help me make any final corrections to my pronunciation before I commit it all to memory.

Pretty amazing technology. And how cool is that to have a native French speaking CrossFit Coach to help me in the middle of Alabama? 

Awesome I tell ya! Simply Awesome.

And it will truly be Christmas miracle awesome if I can learn it in French over the next few weeks! 

259/365  …. argh… missed posting this by a minute or two… oh well. The new norm.

Friday the 13th: My lucky day

Not being a superstitious person, I claim Friday the 13th as my lucky day. Nevermind I forgot to post about it in my 365 writing challenge yesterday. 

My lucky day included:

  1. Some extra free time to run a couple of errands. 
  2. My PIANO GUYS order came! 
  3. My charming, little Charlie R. and I got to have lunch and spend the afternoon together. 

It was a great morning to get several things done, a delicious lunch and a fantastic afternoon with my Little Guy, and an evening filled with uplifting music, music that I have imported to make playlists for rowing and jump roping and crossfiting.

It was more than okay on the lucky-me day.

257 on 258/365

Love Sir Cliff Richards! He sounds fabulous!  The cd version is the second video below.

Sunday: A break from the dreary world

I love to spend my time, when not in Church on Sunday, listening to General Conference sermons and Music & the Spoken Word.

Be still, my soul: Thy God doth undertake

To guide the future as he has the past.

Thy hope, thy confidence let nothing shake;

All now mysterious shall be bright at last.

Be still, my soul: The waves and winds still know

His voice who ruled them while he dwelt below.

Hymn 124: Be Still My Soul

There is great joy in resting from one’s labors, feasting on the words of Christ. And all He asks is that we give Him one day a week.


Singing in Church next Sunday

My friend, Tina, is a really great musician. She’s one in a million as far as talent goes so it is fortunate for me that we are members of the same congregation. She has agreed to accompany me while I sing in Chuch next Sunday. 

We met together for a short run through after church services and to share ideas on the musical intro, interlude, and ending today. She had some fabulous ideas as she ran her fingers across the keys, ever so thoughtfully. 

I am thankful to have the opportunity to sing Press Forward Saints. It is such a joyful hymn. It lifts my soul beyond measure. 

Thanks Tina! You are wonderful, you are!


Karaoke Fun and Fond Memories

My friend, Helen, posted a great YouTube video titled Tony Awards – Broadway Carpool Karaoke – One Day More. It brought back a wonderful memory of living in Dayton, Ohio when I had the great privilege of spending some time with the main cast of Dayton Opera’s Samson et Dalila in 2007. 

I met my friend, Elena Bocharova, the Dalila, because I served as a volunteer at Dayton Opera for a few seasons and eventually joined the Opera Guild of Dayton. It had been my privilege to first meet her when she debuted as the Carmen the year before. We just clicked, becoming fast friends, so when she was contracted for the 2007 performance I told her I would definitely be there for her. 

So now the Dinner & Karaoke story. We all were intertwined by two degrees of separation.

Dongwon Shin, a tenor, was cast as Samson. I first met him because, as a Dayton Opera Volunteer, I picked him up from the airport for the Dayton Opera Star Gala or New Year’s event. (He is just absolutely adorable.) 

John Packard was cast as the Priest of Dagon. He and Elena knew each other from Conservatory days in San Fransisco, if I remember correctly.

Screen Shot 2017-05-24 at 11.38.04 PMSo “we,” Elena, Dongwon, and John decide to go out for dinner and I wanted to take them to the Club on Wright Patterson Air Force Base. John’s wife, Pam, also came with us, of course!

My dear friend from the Guild, Nora Stang, and I had planned on doing lunch when I got into town but between her schedule and mine it was proving impossible to connect….so I literally had to beg her to come with us since Wednesday evening was the only time I could meet with her.

To make a long story short we all got to the club, had a lovely dinner with just the most delightful conversation when we heard a marvelously smooth voice singing Karaoke. Honestly we thought it was a recording.

No….no…it was karaoke when we heard the next two voices!

At the end of dinner we moved over to the dance floor/karaoke area to enjoy the “show.” But after listening to a few songs and with some prodding, Dongwon stepped up to sing from our group. Then Elena went next, and so on we went for a couple of hours until we helped close down the house. 

It was one of those best Karaoke night’s ever! And I feel so blessed to have been a part of it!Screen Shot 2017-05-24 at 11.38.40 PM.png