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Did anyone hear Lucy Skeaping's programme about Dominique Phinot...and if so, any comments?
I heard a few of the motets and thought that the performances did the music no favours whatsoever. It was as though the music were being sight-read in a thoroughly perfunctory manner. I suppose they get the BBC singers in for programmes like this to save money, but it didn't sound as though David Hill was making any effort to inspire them to actually make music. These were the kind of performances that give Renaissance polyphony a bad name!
rauschwerk I'm glad you said all that and not me! But my thoughts exactly. I think that sopranos who cannot sing above an E (top space, treble clef) without shrieking and wobbling, and ATB who just sing full tilt all the time need to be kept away from that repertory. The sad thing is that the members of the Beeb Singers (and indeed David Hill himself) are all excellent musicians, many of whom have arrived through the ranks of (how shall I put this?) very good choirs. At the moment it seems that the BBC is having to find slots for the Singers to fill...The Choir, The Early Music Show, etc. Isn't it time for a re-structuring? I'm the last person who would want anyone to be chicked out of a job, but surely the best (and probably most economically efficient) way to run the Singers would be to have a pool of available singers, with a variety of voice-types, who could be individually booked to perform music which suited them. I'm sure the BBC runs its diary well in advance (one year? two years?) and it could have first call on those singers without affecting other work they may be doing.
I'm the last person who would want anyone to be chicked out of a job, but surely the best (and probably most economically efficient) way to run the Singers would be to have a pool of available singers, with a variety of voice-types, who could be individually booked to perform music which suited them. I'm sure the BBC runs its diary well in advance (one year? two years?) and it could have first call on those singers without affecting other work they may be doing.
Um, you really don't get a good choir just by pulling together some good singers when you happen to need one!
Kingfisher. But the singers would have sung together quite regularly, albeit in different combinations. Amongst the main London-based choirs a lot of the personnel is inter-changeable; they are all excellent musicians and obey certain unspoken ground-rules. In fact you could pull a handful together and get a very good choir. Despite being good readers, it is understood at that level that you 'know the dots' when you come to rehearsal. I think it would have been easy for David Hill to have picked a dozen singers (whose voice-types and aptitudes were widely known 'on the circuit') and to have produced...with the same rehearsal time...a better shot at Phinot than we got the other day.
OK ardcarp, I guess much depends on the degree of regularity.
I can’t talk about technicalities of HIP in vocal music, or any other music for that matter, but when I see BBS Singers on the Early Music Show play list, I tend not to make too much effort to sit by the radio. I just don’t think it is quite the right kind of vocal group for early music (especially this early). I’d have thought there are many young ensembles specialised in this repertoire who do not demand the level of fees The Sixteen or The Tallis Scholars may do. They may not be as polished as the established groups are but are more likely to have the right spirit for the music than the BBC Singers do who are good all-rounders in the main stream. It would give these young musicians wonderful opportunities if the programme use these groups, and we can hear some fresh voice in the field. It can’t be that difficult forRadio3 to do this, surely?
The speakerine strikes an attitude:
It was indeed interesting to hear some of the seldom sung music of Phinot the fifteenth-century homo-sexualistic composer; but the accompanying photo-graph seems quite out of place does it not? It tells us we think more about modern Britain than about poor Phinot.
You have about five hours to hear the programme . . .
I like the designer chair. :winkeye:
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