Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy: a contemporary painting by Theodor Hildebrandt

Sunday 8 July 2018

Fauré Requiem & Mendelssohn Hymn of Praise

Royal Albert Hall, 7.00 pm

Details for singers

Please note: all links to external websites and downloaded documents open in a new window.

Vocal scores. Important update. Some singers have experienced problems getting hold of the Schirmer edition of the Mendelssohn Hymn of Praise. The US publisher keeps reprinting, but UK distributors are not being informed of supply dates. You have three options:
>> Use a Novello edition. Both ‘old’ and ‘new’ Novello scores are compatible, because all three editions use the same system of rehearsal letters even though the page numbers are different. They are more expensive, however.
>> Try the library. If you have a score on order but can’t rely on its arriving in time, we suggest you try and borrow a score from the library while you are waiting. (The Community & Youth Music Library, for example, based in the London Borough of Haringey has scores to lend to choir groups; here are their contact details.) Otherwise, the New Novello edition is readily available. Our chorus notes refer to rehearsal letters as well as page numbers, so you will be able to use them with any edition.
>> Free download. Another option is to download the score free of charge from the Choral Public Domain Library.  The link takes you straight to the page: just click on the PDF icon at the top, next to the red number 06997. As the complete cantata is over 100 pages, we suggest you don’t print the three solo numbers (3, 6 and 9) and that you print the rest double sided. This score has bar numbers, but no rehearsal letters, but it is free apart from the cost of printing it out!

You need to bring your own music, since it will not be possible to purchase scores on the day. Fauré’s Requiem is widely available, and all editions of the vocal score appear to be compatible (page numbers will differ). Mendelssohn’s Hymn of Praise will be sung in English, and we recommend the Schirmer edition (ISBN 978-07935-4709-8). If you have an old Novello edition it should be compatible; minor differences with New Novello will be flagged in the chorus notes. If you have no local music shop, then you can order from Blackwells either by by email: printed.music@blackwell.co.uk or by telephone: 01865 333582.

Rehearsals. There is a morning piano rehearsal from 11.00am to 1.00pm, and an afternoon rehearsal with orchestra from 2.30-4.15pm. Please do not skip either of these, and allow plenty of time for any additional security measures which may be in place at the Royal Albert Hall, including bag-searches which are time consuming. The security team is only working for your safety, and cannot be expected to exclude you from a bag-search because you tell them you are late! There is no break in either rehearsal, but it is possible to book both lunch and dinner at the RAH (details to follow).

There is a also an afternoon pre-concert workshop, led by Bob Chilcott, on Saturday 16 June. This takes place in London’s Bloomsbury Central Baptist Church, an ideal venue, conveniently placed for transport, culture, shopping and sight-seeing. Places can be reserved on the booking form for a lower price (£15) than you pay if you turn up on the door (£20).

Chorus instructions for this concert are available to download here. They will be sent automatically to anyone whose booking application includes a stamped-addressed envelope, and we will also send further copies when we post your tickets. Please copy the instructions into your score, as they will help with your practising. (There are four A4 page which have been scaled to print as an A5 booklet if your printer has this facility.)

Learning the music. Singers should arrive on the day already having learnt the music, since the rehearsal on the day is primarily to accustom everyone to the building, the size of the choir and the volume of the orchestra and to add as much polish as possible to the performance. There will be little opportunity to learn notes! Help is at hand: CDs of individual voice-parts (soprano, alto, tenor or bass) are available from ChoraLine at www.choraline.com, and the chorus instructions will also help you. Why not join our Facebook group, find other singers in your area, and set up a joint practice session?

Dress for the concert in the Royal Albert Hall should be elegant. Gentlemen usually wear suits or a dinner jacket with a white shirt, and ladies are asked to abide by the TRBC colour code: something including bright- or mid-blue for sopranos, and something with red for altos. We suggest that female tenors wear a white top with black trousers or a black skirt; you’re welcome to add a black bow-tie if you like!

To get an idea of colours you can visit the ‘Shop by Colour’ pages of Kettlewell Colours at www.kettlewellcolours.co.uk. Their colours True Blue, Periwinkle, Oxford Blue and Royal Blue are perfect colours for sopranos; True Red, Geranium, Poppy and Tomato are lovely bright reds for altos. The company is continuing its offer of a 10% discount to TRBC singers: type KCSCRATCH2 into the discount code box.

By tradition, our July concerts are also a chance to wear our official TRBC polo tops which are available in blue (sopranos), red (altos), white (tenors) and black (basses). Click here to download an order form. Polo shirts will be available for sale on the day in the Door 6 Foyer of the Royal Albert Hall, and their sale will contribute to the amount raised for our charity (which we hope will be the Royal National Institute for Blind People instead of the NAS).

Dressing rooms. Gentlemen may use Chorus Room A in the West corridor under the Arena, best reached from the Heineken Green Room (formerly known as the West Arena Foyer). Ladies may use Chorus Room B, which is rather difficult to find – please follow signs from the Heineken Green Room or ask the Stewards for directions. Warning: these areas will not be locked at any time!

For other questions you might have, click here to go to our page of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs).

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