Bravi and V.T.G. Rehearsal Blog

Dear Bravi and VTG Singers,

It was wonderful to see ALL of you on Monday night, and on behalf of all of us at Cantabile, we are so excited for another year of exceptional music making.  This year should be a wonderful experience for all — I’m so happy to see the young men’s division growing and improving.

Much of this information is similar to the Vocalise blog you may have received, but please read carefully as there are notes specific to Bravi and VTG added when appropriate.

On Monday, in addition to meeting many new friends, we started three new SATB pieces.  Please go through your practice agenda here:

Grace (SATB), arranged by Mark Hayes

  • Please have your parts learned by next rehearsal.
  • Sing the opening section in octaves with the treble voices (tenors/basses start one octave below the printed pitch).
  • As a reminder, Alto 2’s will join the tenors in several places.  Tenors should continue on their part but be aware of the additional voices on your part in the following places:
    • m.31-m.33
    • m.41-m.80
  • Make sure you are breathing at the appropriate times (stagger breathe), and are not taking breaths between beats 1 and 2, following a tied whole note (i.e. between beats 1 and 2 in m.6, m.10 etc.).  When staggering your breathing at the ends of words, please do NOT put the final consonant on — this will be heard and will distract the listener.
  • Do make sure you are lifting when indicated (m.48, and m.52)
  • Don’t slow down on the long phrases and cadences, especially coming out of tied whole notes
  • Intonation: pay attention to the pitch on the tied whole notes as well and make sure it’s not going flat as the pitch is held– keep the breath moving, find sneaky places to renew breath

Listen to the excellent rendition of the piece on Spotify:  BYU Women’s Choir’s CD, “Wondrous Love” which we listened to on Monday.

Vindo (SATB)

Learning most of your part for next week.  If you’re not sure which part to learn, work on the text and the rhythm throughout.  Remember that the lower voices (tenors/basses) do not sing at the beginning of this piece. Tenors enter on page 2, measure 17.  Basses join on page 2, measure 21.

  • The words to this piece are nonsense syllables to resemble Finnish (some of them are actual Finish)

Here’s the video we watched in rehearsal.

Amavolovolo (SATB)

  • Have your parts memorized on words by next week.
  • Keep in mind the nature and intention of this song; it’s meant to find joy in spite of, or in the middle of all the violence that was taking place.  When you sing it, you should want to dance!

Here’s the video of the Drakensberg Boys’ Choir we watched in rehearsal.

Other announcements and reminders:

  • A very warm welcome to our newest VTG members: Cameron and Aaron!  Happy you’re with us.
  • A HUGE thank you to our choir parent this year, Allison!
  • Congratulations to your junior faculty: Megan and Simon, who have been appointed student conductors for Aria and Bravi, respectively!
  • Parent orientation is Monday, September 12th at 7:30pm.  Your parents must attend – we will cover a whole year of vital information! Vocalise/Bravi/VTG is a family commitment: for you to be success, your parents must be well informed and stay current to all our activities.
  • Retreat:all singers are required to attend the Cantabile retreat at YMCA Camp Campbell September 16th – September 18th.  Please make sure you read your handout!
  • Reminder: please make sure your parents have ordered the correct uniform for you.
  • Bring your yoga mats!  Every week we will start at exactly 5:30pm on the floor with our shoes and socks off, and our yoga mats half-rolled beneath us. (Several yoga mats were left at rehearsal last night!) New singers will be getting their Cantabile yoga mats at retreat.

As was said in the Vocalise blog: thank you all for an amazing first week of making music together.  It’s going to be a life-changing year for all of us, and it truly wouldn’t be possible without all your focused and passionate work, dedication, and love that you’re going to put into the music.  Have a wonderful week and we’ll see you next Monday!

Jace, Jazmine, and Elena

– See more at:

August 25, 2016

August 22, 2016 – VTG/Bravi Rehearsal #1

Dear Bravi and VTG Singers, It was wonderful to see ALL of you on Monday night, and on behalf of all of us at Cantabile, we are so excited for another year of exceptional music making.  This year should be a wonderful experience for all — I’m so happy to see the young men’s division growing and improving. Much of […]
May 6, 2016

May 2, 2016/Rehearsal #29

Dear Bravi and VTG, The concert is upon us! At this point, you should have all your rep learned; please make sure that you brush up on any little spots that you are still unsure of. That being said, I feel like you are very ready for the concert. Seven Bridges sounded so good with the drum and guitar – […]
April 27, 2016

April 25, 2016/Rehearsal #28

Dear Bravi, Very, very good work last night! Red, Red Rose was so beautiful; I had such fun perfecting that with you! Firstly, a big note: WE ARE REHEARSING OFF-SITE NEXT WEEK! We will be rehearsing at First United Methodist Church in Palo Alto, 625 Hamilton Ave. (Where the Festival for Young Voices was.) We will be meeting in the Patio room. Look […]
April 21, 2016

April 18, 2016/Rehearsal #14

Dear Bravi/VTG Singers, Thank you for your wonderful hard work on Monday. It was a pleasure to work with you a bit on my own. Please check the Vocalise blog for details about what we did all together. It is important you also go there and look at that information. Go now! Then come back here! Alone, we mostly worked […]
April 13, 2016

April 11, 2016/Rehearsal #26

Dear Bravi and VTG, Monday felt SO much better on Seven Bridges Road!! Yes, it lacked some of the “zing” of the original, but you don’t have fully mature voices yet either to produce that “zing,” and this new arrangement is actually quite “zingy” in your voices anyway!  🙂  This is definitely performable, so please work to learn your new parts before […]
April 7, 2016

April 4, 2016/Rehearsal #25

Dear Bravi, Monday’s rehearsal was quite interesting; I so appreciate your flexibility! First, we worked together to find a proper TB part for Goza, then we spent time working on Seven Bridges Road, figuring out voicing, and really working on the notes and rhythms. (As a side note: that work that you did on 7BR will still come in very […]
March 30, 2016

March 28, 2016/Rehearsal #24

Dear Bravi and VTG, I think that you all know what is necessary before Friday’s rehearsal with Maestro Escalada. Remember the conversation we had about really learning your music? Well, do it. Simple. Practically every one of you still needs to spend a considerable amount of time more with Misa Criolla really hammering out those wonky spots.  Remember how much better the piece […]
March 25, 2016

March 21, 2016/Rehearsal #23

Dear Bravi and VTG, When I studied voice, I was already an accomplished pianist and a very strong sight-reader. I was able to sight-sing the vast majority of what was put in front of me as a vocalist, even solo repertoire. Because of my memorizing skills, I could also “learn” a song cycle in just a week. However, what I […]