The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #106314   Message #2195583
Posted By: Liz the Squeak
16-Nov-07 - 05:24 PM
Thread Name: Do you sing from Memory?
Subject: RE: Do you sing from Memory?
I defy anyone to remember the entire 'Messiah' - including the bits usually cut out - without the music.

Most of my performances are done with the music in front of me, because it's simply far too much to try to remember. Even with the music in front of me, it's far too easy to go wrong. I've discovered that this is because a few members of the choir who stand behind me, have been singing 'Messiah' regularly for a number of years. This will be my third performance in a singing career spanning 34 years in various choirs, so I'm looking at the book for the correct words and notes. These few members have sung it so often they no longer feel the need to refer the score. Consequently, what they sing and what is written in the score are not always the same thing.

Having sung with the words in front of me for more than 3 decades, I find it hard to remember songs I've not sung more than about 90 times. As I get older, it's getting harder to remember tunes too, so the book in front of me is more of a crutch now. I have been known to have the book in front of me and sing an entire song without refering to it once.. I've even been known to turn it to a blank page for the few songs I DO know completely off by heart.

Similarly I've seen a performer stand up in front of an audience, tune up his guitar and not play a single note on it for the duration of the 4 songs he sang. He did grip it like a drowning man grabs a straw though.

Different crutches work for different people. It doesn't bother me, so don't let me bother you.