August 2005Kinhaven so far, and I was so incredibly sad to leave. On the last night, my friends and I sat weeping on the basketball court! And, on the last concert, the last piece was a Requiem by Faure that a chorus of the entire camp sings, and at the end I just burst into tears. I'm going to miss it so much.
I cried on the car ride home the next morning too, but then got to telling funny anecdotes about camp, one of which I'll write here:
So, the chorus that I was talking about has a rehearsal almost every day in the afternoon. Since it's a instrumental camp and not a voice camp, chorus is just an extra, rather laid-back thing. But it's really fun. In the first rehearsal, we are sorted into sopranos, altos, and bass. But it's really informal ("Who thinks you can sing the really high notes?" [people raise hands] "Okay, all you are sopranos!" And the same for altos. Now, it's a bit tricker to be a bass, and as you could expect all of the 12 and 13 y.o. guys want to be in the bass section. Some of them can sing the low notes (Jerry, the conductor of the camp who leads chorus, plays a note on the piano they have to sing if they want to be in the bass section. Not all of them pass the test, and they have to go sit with the girls in the alto section. So, after doing all of our warmups, we start learning the Requiem. In the beginning, the sopranos have a solo for about four lines before the other sections come in. But I thought that the sopranos and altos were supposed to sing it together. So we began the piece, with the sopranos singing their high notes, and I was singing an octave below, since I'm just more comfortable in that range. Jerry, the conductor, stops conducting, puts his hands down and gives us that hilarious stare where he looks astonished and disgusted at the same time.
"Who's singing so low?" he asks, and then plays the proper notes on the piano. One of the basses must be singing. "Begin again." We start again, but Jerry stops.
"Who is that?" he asks. Then he points to a boy near the edge of the altos, one who didn't make it into the basses the first time. "You, over there, go into the basses," Jerry directs, thinking it was him. The triumphant boy walks over and takes a seat with the basses, amid cheers and high-fives from his friends.
We start the piece again, and again Jerry stops, insisting some boy is singing too low. So he points out another boy and tells him to join the basses. He is greeted the same way as the first.
By now I've figured out it's me who's making the problem but I find it really very funny because I'm giving all these guys what they wanted! My friends are all giggling with me, and then we get scolded for talking. It seems that boy after boy is getting moved into the bass section! Finally the guys are figuring out it's me, and trying to tell Jerry. But he looks at me with that stare and says, "No, it couldn't possibly be her." "Let her join the bass section!" "No, no, of course not." We start again for the millionth time and I sing my low octave again. I guess Jerry decides to ignore it in favor of having to move me to the basses. But after that I stop, not wanting to make him angry. After that everyone joked all the time about how I was a bass!
Anyway, I had such a terrific time that it was impossible to leave. And now I'm in a post-camp depression. But school starts soon and I'll get to see my friends again. Last night my sister and I went to capoeira for the first time in over 10 weeks, and we're really sore!
Alice Smith is from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Biography
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