Thursday, April 26, 2012

Touring Choir

Primigenitus and Steve are at Grove City College, my Alma Mater.  In divinely-appointed timing, they arrived just as the Touring Choir was rehearsing Samuel Barber's Agnus Dei in Harbison Chapel, and took this video.  I should explain that I was in Touring Choir myself in 1988-89, under the direction of Dr. Douglas Browne, who is still the director here.  And Steve and I had the once in a lifetime opportunity to travel with a special Alumni choir group on a tour of the British Isles in 2005.  We sang in St. Patrick's, St. Giles', and St. Paul's.  We sang Holst, Gretchaninoff, and Rutter.  There are no words for how wonderful it was... and I know a lot of words.

One of the biggest regrets of my college years -- actually, of my whole life -- is that I didn't audition for Touring Choir earlier.  Rehearsals were always a mixture of intense hard work and sublime beauty.  Performances were the same, but with fewer interruptions. It is pretty close to my conception of Heaven, and Dr. Browne is pretty close to my conception of the ideal teacher.  It is hard to listen to this without tears, not just because of the beauty of the music, but also because of the beauty of what I can no longer be a part of.  I have a deaf ear, I am at a different stage of life, and there is no choir in my life, and there would be no time in any case.  And there may be a teensy bit of jealousy, because this is what my day involved:
...intense hard work, but not so much of the sublime beauty.  Well, with the possible exception of Big Bear.

But if someday I wake up, and my left ear has stopped ringing and is working again, and "I got shoes ... robe ... wings ... harp," I will know I am in Heaven.  And Dr. Browne will be directing the choir.

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