Rehearsal Notes Benjamin Britten

Hymn to St. CeciliaRehearsal 18
Something that is confusing is the constant rhythm expressed in the bass line. I do not hear or feel that consistency to set up the other lines above that quarter note rhythm. As an instrumentalist I think of precise articulations and a minute separation between the notes. Even though it is sustained, it has to be very clear to make the other lines fit. Problems with that in rehearsal. Repeated Notes beginning in the second measure need that separation to set the sync so to speak. I think of alignment of the score when working on this section and how the various rhythms fit together.
Dynamics throughout are not there yet and the dipthong’s are varied from person to person as of yet. Mental subdivisions of the beat are sometimes vague.
Page 32, great writing, hard to perform without intense mental and listening concentration as the lines play off each other, hope to work on that and hearing each part as it interacts rhythmically.
Prep for entrances is what I am personally working on in this piece.
Rehearsal 22
I am beginning the tenor E at piano and pushing the phrase rhythmically and expression wise to the A in the second measure of this section, otherwise it does not make sense to me. I refer instrumentally to this concept as building intensity to the A, holding the intensity to the F natural and accenting there. The final statement on the G natural I am trying to do a subdued SFZ and subito piano on the C natural leading into the dimuendo on page 36, preparing for the sudden exciting forte at rehearsal 23, each note there with a jazz type accent and a bit of articulation, enough to set the rhythm.
That’s it for now…….

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