NCC Christmas Newsletter
I hope that you are all well and that you and your classes enjoyed the first NCC rehearsal. We've gotten some amazing feedback from schools and teachers and hope that you are all enjoying the repertoire. As we approach the Christmas break and attention moves to more festive matters, there are few notes and dates I would like to bring to your attention.
Musical Directors' Notes
Keep Revising: A reminder for all schools to keep listening to the songs from the first rehearsals. We appreciate that there are often other musical events coming close to Christmas, but the Musical Directors have asked that schools should keep the songs in the minds of the children to avoid having to start all over again in the New Year. Also, previewing some of the next round of songs is strongly recommended!
Laudate Dominum: The Musical Directors have asked that only Soprano 1s sing the opening of Laudate Dominum (Bar 1-41 inclusive) going forward. It is as written from Bar 42 (Sop 1 and 2 on the melody; Alto on harmony)
Song Order: School's should ensure that all songs are taught in the order they are written on page 4 of the Vocal Score. The songs have been organised in a particular order and schools should ensure that they teach all the songs for each round, and not skip ahead. This will really help rehearsals run smoothly when all schools know the same songs.
Song Keys: Building on the above, we would ask that the songs are taught in the printed keys. The pitch of the printed music will be the performed keys by the orchestras and children need the practice of singing them in the correct key.
Bring Me Little Water: When teaching this song, the Musical Directors have asked that the actions are left out for now and that the children should focus on knowing the music very well. A video with the actions will be shared with schools in mid-January to aid teaching. Please stick with the music for now!
Recordings: When making decisions relating to the interpretation of the repertoire, the Musical Directors recommend the recordings as the definitive version. There are some instances where, due to word placement/the style of the piece, the written music does not capture fully how the line is to be sung. When in doubt, go with the recordings!
National Committee Updates
Rehearsals 2 and 3: There are two more cluster rehearsals scheduled for after Christmas - one in February 2023 and the final one in late March 2023. During rehearsals it would be very helpful if children could remain seated as much as possible, without unnecessary toilet breaks.
Concert Dates: The Dublin concerts will take place from 18th-28th April. We would remind other regions that their concerts should take place after this. The NCH concerts will take place on the 27th, 28th and 29th May. A gentle reminder to the Area Organisers to send on their rehearsal and concert dates and locations.
Refresher Course: The second refresher course will take place on Thursday 19th January in St. Colmcilles JNS, Knocklyon, Dublin 16 from 7.00pm - 8.30pm. This will be facilitated by the Musical Directors and focus on the last eight songs for Round 2 and 3 rehearsals. A link to register will be circulated after Christmas.
Online Access: The tracks are still available online for students and teachers. We would ask students to use the 'Students - Click Here' button on the website and use their password which they can get from their teachers. Only teachers should sign up for an account.
Accompaniment CDs: There are CDs available of the instrumental versions of the songs on CD. They are €10 + postage. If you need one for your rehearsals, please write to firstname.lastname@example.org
The National Committee and Musical Directors would like to take this opportunity to thank you all for your hard work and dedication on the programme so far, and look forward to 2023 when the National Children's Choir will perform once more.
Wishing you and your families a very peaceful and enjoyable Christmas and a Happy New Year.