Advertise on ChoralNet 
ChoralNet logo
The mission of the ACDA is to inspire excellence in choral music through education, performance, composition, and advocacy.

Items by Jennifer Breedlove-Budziak

Results: 59
Title Author Date
Comment: Re: Contemporary Choral Music
Good stuff on here! (I'd especially second the Aguiar Salmo 150--Great lively piece) I can only think of a couple more things to offer:   David Lang's "I Live in Pain" is a strong and restless, different, but accessible. (So is "I Lie," but it might be more lyrical than you're looking for--it's...
Comment: Re: Taking the "Christ" out of "Ubi Caritas"?
Just to throw another aspect into the mix (and honestly, not knowing the details of the situation, I cannot unequivocally say what I think the "right" answer is)...   Side by side with the theological issues, and that of the composer choosing to set this text (although, to be fair, he may simply ...
Comment: Re: Edgy contemporary choral music (no pretty, please)
Most of the new-edgy-not-pretty music I know is full of divisi parts and very difficult, but you might look at David Lang's "Statement to the Court" and/or James MacMillan's "Cantos Sagrados." You might find something of Erik Esenvalds you like too (depending on your definition of "pretty," I suppo...
Comment: Re: The "New Voice Type" coming to our choruses
Lots of good advice here, especially re cultivation of head voice, and I only have a couple of things to add--   First, keep in mind that girls' voices go through a "change" too, even though it's not as dramatic as the boys' voice change--in my experience, it often manifests itself as a complete ...
Comment: Re: Double Dipping as a Music Director
Out of curiosity, what happens on the Sundays during the year when the MD is gone? Does the organist cover the things she would have played and do the full service, or is a substitute brought in? The answer to that question might, to me, have bearing on which direction to go here.     --Jennifer...
Comment: Re: Dismissing a church soloist
Lots of really good advice here. And I love that it seems to be a given (as it should be) that especially in church work we need to consider both the musical and the interpersonal sides of things, even where paid professionals are concerned.   Your initial post made it sound as though the issue w...
Comment: Re: o holy night for soprano and strings
GIA has an amazingly flexible arrangement for voice, harp/piano, and string QUINTET, but I'm guessing the bass could be omitted and you could do it Vln-Vln-Vla-Cello. They have a choral version and a solo version of it, and either is compatible with the string parts but not necessarily with each oth...
Comment: Re: The Demise of pre-1900s Music?
Being equally pragmatic--as long as there are ensembles with shoestring budgets, and Kalmus editions continue to be available, and imslp continues to thrive, the body of Western music that does NOT require high purchase costs will not die. :-) Public domain is a helpful thing.    Still, this is ...
Comment: Re: music for Christmas morning service
What about one of the (many) choral settings of "My Dancing Day" out there? I have one with World Library Publications (http://www.wlp.jspaluch.com/8395.htm  --and the sample recording is WAY too slow, so ignore that! :-) ), and Gerald Near's (Aureole Editions MN.AE004) is wonderful.   No specif...
Comment: Re: Pergolesi "Stabat Mater" editions
I performed this piece last year...this is one where (according to Bob Gjerdingen of Northwestern) the question of "authenticity" becomes blurry and problematic, since it was performed so heavily in its early years that there are any number of potentially "authentic" versions floating around. So I'd...
Comment: Re: Hebrew text--transliteration, IPA, or both? What is useful?
This is an interesting question! My own take on it--   First, just for transliterated languages in general--In my admittedly limited experience, the only singers who are really comfortable with IPA are the ones with voice degrees, or at least serious study in that direction--so one of my question...
Comment: Re: Can "Non-auditioned" still have a screening process for members?
I'm going to have to steal the phrase "vocal interview," if Thomas doesn't mind...:-)   My approach has been to meet with new members 20 minutes or so before the first rehearsal they were to sing for, to talk to them about procedures, give them music, and "hear them sing a few notes so we know wh...
Comment: Re: Music Folder Question
PD-- I think it's going to depend on what kind of music you do with your church choir. If you generate a lot of your own music or use printed PDFs a lot, the three rings are a huge help in helping choir members keep themselves organized. Smaller octaves can be easily hole-punched, and it's all in t...
Comment: Re: Choir rehearsal on April Fools Day - any ideas?
I would just suggest that whatever it is be something that can happen, be laughed over, and moved beyond in under a minute so that the productivity of the rehearsal won't be destroyed. (That's why I applauded the kazoos, and why I would have reservations about anything else yet suggested here...) Ma...
Comment: Re: Rehearsal CDs
With all respect to (and much agreement with!) John and Kristina...   When one is conducting a choir with a median age of about 72 (when factoring in the one 24 year old whose mom has been in the alto section for 35 years), the question of the importance of musical literacy and the weighing of di...
Comment: Re: Women's Choir Repertoire by female composers
My women's chorus just did a complete program of music by women composers, and there was a lot out there we couldn't even touch!   I'd highly recommend you take a look at the catalogs of Gwyneth Walker, Libby Larsen, and Eleanor Daley (her "Lake Isle of Innisfree" is one of those things that ...
Comment: Re: Long Time Choir Members Need to Call It Quits
One approach I've used (with singers of ALL ages) is to say frequently "if you can't hear the people on either side of you, you are singing too loudly," something as true when one is losing one's hearing as when one's ears are just fine. It's an oversimplification of a more complex truth, but it d...
Comment: Re: What is the most perfect piece of choral music ever composed? Opinions, please.
This thread makes me smile...I saw the topic and immediately thought, "The Mozart Ave Verum, of course."   The opening movement of the Matthew Passion might need to be mentioned as well. In fact, I suspect the "most perfect" piece of anything is probably somewhere in Bach's work, we just are ...
Comment: Re: Teaching students about the old conductors
Margaret Hillis. Her name needs to be in this thread too. --Jennifer
Comment: Re: Sending PDF sample copies
Okay, my two cents time...   I too have been following this thread and biting my tongue (which is fine, because some version of whatever I'd say has pretty much been said by someone else all the way through)...but just to clarify, I don't think Craig's declining to provide rehearsal tracks fo...
Comment: Re: Sacred Music Ideas for Catholic Mass
I know this is an old thread, and others have pretty much said everything I would have suggested--especially the importance of the musical selections (both choral and congregational) being tied to the seasonal, Scriptural, and liturgical goings-on of any particular moment. That said, I'll also put...
Comment: Re: The Chick-fil-A Choir Concert
If I didn't like your politics? Sure I would come to your concert.   If it were announced or stated somewhere in the concert's publicity that a portion of the proceeds of ticket sales would go to an organization I would spend my last breath speaking out against?    Not a chance.   ...
Comment: Re: Student Centered Learning in a choir rehearsal??
--also...   Again, not specifically SCL, but have you read Ramona Wis's book The Choral Conductor as Leader, published by GIA? A fascinating look at how our collective cultural idea of "leadership" is evolving from the traditional top-down models to something more collaborative, and the impl...
Comment: Re: Student Centered Learning in a choir rehearsal??
Cathy--   I'm working my way through Tom Carter's Choral Charisma in the cracks of my schedule, and it may have some ideas that bear on what you're asking...he doesn't speak specifically of SCL, but his whole premise is about teaching (or maybe more accurate would be "forming") an ensemble ...
Comment: Re: Dresses
Our school's dresses are from Southeastern...they are the ones that seemed to have some real length issues, with tall thin women often having the dresses that fit them come in ridiculously short...I think you can order them in "talls," which our office never did, just make sure you consider length...
Comment: Re: Dresses
I don't have my browser links handy; I'll try to put a few up when I get home tonight...but for the momentl I would suggest, as someone currently in studies at a school with choir dresses in a sturdy, cheap polyester knit--keep in mind what the fabric will feel like against the skin of the wearer ...
Comment: Re: organist pay
My sense is that for something like this, especially if there is any interaction expected between the new-to-be-hired music minister and the staff in terms of meetings, recruitment, coordinating sermons and seasonal stuff with music, and/or any additional activities, you are not looking for a per-...
Comment: Re: Advent music for Lessons and Carols
Also late in the game, but commenting anyway for anyone who picks up this thread for NEXT year...   Most of my favorites have already been mentioned, but here are a few that haven't: Christus Paradox--WONDERFUL piece! (Fedak/Dunstan/PICARDY)--GIA Publications Come, O Just One (Lynn Trapp-...
Comment: Re: My "Tenth" Lesson, of King's Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols
Makes me smile that I'm not the only one who loves that ascending minor second. :-) So simple, so brilliant.  --Jennifer
Comment: Re: Why ChoralNet is not "taking off"
Another "me too" post.   I find the daily digests incredibly helpful--like many others, I am able to skim them to see what's happened in the past day and whether it's something I'm interested in clicking over to, and compared to the other junk that seems to fill my mailboxes it's a very conci...
Comment: Re: Working on tone & blending while notes are still being learned?
Cathy--   Liz G. pretty much nailed everything I was going to say (with twice the clarity and half the words), and I think she's spot on--and Liz, thanks for the article link!   The only thing I'd add--Cathy, you mention "tone production, balance and blending" in your original post.  In...
Comment: Re: 21 Things That Will Become Obsolete in Education by 2020
I think Shannon has a point in a lot of areas--lockers, desks and such, especially. Flat surfaces on which to put whatever it is we're working with, and an individually secure spot to stash one's stuff are not going to go away. Especially since any school that has purchased desks in the past 3 yea...
Comment: Re: Music about war
Neither of these is from the classical rep, but either could work really well in an SATB arrangement if any such exist (and I find it hard to imagine that they don't)--Do You Hear The People Sing from Les Mis could be a great crowd-pleaser closing for a concert, and I'm remembering the Simon and G...
Comment: Re: Women's chorus music about "nice" women
How about "In Taberna" from Carmina Burana?    Just kidding. :-) (I've always wanted to program that for women's chorus; normally we just sit there grinding our teeth while the guys get to have all the fun. Someday some group I conduct will do it as an encore...)   More seriously--how a...
Comment: Re: Music for very small Women's Ensemble
I used to be part of an SSAA quartet, and we used a number of the pieces cited above (although I wish we were still singing together so we could try some of the amazing music listed on this site!).     I have an SSAA setting of a song cycle based on Sephardic folk songs; I haven't cleaned up...
Comment: Re: looking for more composers that sound like Eric Whitacre
Lauridsen was the first who came to mind for me as well, although again it's hard to really say as "similar" will depend a lot on what you're listening for.   My advice--go to Pandora Radio (pandora.com I think) and set up an account, and create an "Eric Whitacre" station.  The computer itse...
Comment: Re: Did Bach write a Requiem?
John- Thank you for this--I always thought Eb just sounded sort of...wrong. Good to know! As to the conjecture...what do the Bach scholars currently think? Are there any strongly supported opinions? (What did Contino do?) Thanks, Jenn
Comment: Re: Negro Spirituals in "White" Churches
Just a note regarding comments such as " Would we rather than Jesseye Norman didn't sing Mozart or Brahms?  Would we deny Kathleen Battle Handel to sing? " and "I wonder if we would be having this same discussion if the situation were turned, and the choir director of a predominently African-Ame...
Comment: Re: “Tone” Verbiage & Technical Modifications
One aspect of what you'll have to deal with, of course, is vowel production--I moved from Mid-Atlantic to Midwest about 18 years ago, and the horizontality of the Midwestern vowels was beyond anything I would have imagined. Helping form that horizontal flat vowel into an elongated rounded one will...
Comment: Re: Are opera choruses really choruses; and does it really matter?
Ken-- Thanks for the note about the documentary--it's available on Netflix Instant Play, and I watched about half of it last night during an insomnia bout. (No, it didn't cure the insomnia! It's a really good doc!) I'll finish it today...(I'm curious--if any of those on this thread should happen...
Comment: Re: Advice on how to communicate committment with parents of a church children's choir.
Austen--honestly, I'm not entirely comfortable with this as "policy" either--it has just sort of Happened, and I'm running with it for the season to see what happens.  And it really only works when there are "service music" bits that can be assigned, and ones that other students could step in to ...
Comment: Re: Advice on how to communicate committment with parents of a church children's choir.
Just for jollies: below is a Facebook status post I put up a couple of weeks ago, on a very frustrated Sunday morning in my affluent sports-oriented parish:   "Math problem: I have 21 children in the Children's choir. There were 10 present at our last rehearsal. There were 13 at the rehearsal...
Comment: Re: Quips for the Choral Rehearsal
I find it fascinating how many of these involve getting our singers to sing out with confidence even if it means making mistakes...where does the utter terror of Being Wrong come from? Is it socio-cultural? Did they get it from other conductors? Did they get it from ME, as in, have I unknowingly c...
Comment: Re: Quips for the Choral Rehearsal
(after a logical error) That was pretty, what you sang totally makes sense, he could have written it that way. Unfortunately, he didn't.   (similar to a previous) It's rehearsal--if you're unsure, sing it out and make your mistakes with conviction. If we can't hear them, we can't fix them. ...
Comment: Re: Pronounciation of "our"
Something else to keep in mind, too--what we say and what our choirs hear are not always the same thing.   I tell my choirs (Upper Midwest!) what Kentaro does (AH-oo-uh)--and in the end, what they DO is put a very slight but genuine "r" at the end. I do not push for the schwa, I allow what th...
Comment: Re: Rebuilding a Church Choir - Recruitment
Honestly, the single best recruitment technique I've ever found after 25 years of church choral direction is just plain old time, that and the snowball of success (defined as a happy-looking choir singing music beautifully), which eventually draw people to come and look for you and ASK if they can...
Comment: Re: changing genders in lyrics
You have my appreciate too for this well-stated response. :-) Thank you.
Comment: Re: Standard Repertory for Easter Sunday
A lot of my chestnuts are listed above, but...   "Magdalena" from Brahms' Marienlieder  "Three Days," Honore/Ridge, concertato on THAXTED (available on OCP.org--solid writing, brass quartet with organ...very effective!) Laudate Dominum (Mozart, if you have a good soprano solo) Regina C...
Comment: Re: Bach St. John Passion - dealing with questions of Anti-Semitism
Not terribly relevant, but St. John was definitely written in Greek.    That said, the various versions of sacred scripture we deal with hardly constitute "rewrites"--they are translations from one language into another, and as the target language changes, so must the translations if they ar...
Comment: Re: Which hand should I hold the baton in?
Do a YouTube search for "3-year-old Jonathan," and there are also a couple of clips of him playing violin. Remarkable clarity, rhythm, and musicality with a remarkably low degree of excruciating-Suzuki-squeakiness for a kid this age. I suspect Jonathan may be the real deal.   peace, Jennife...