11 December 2014

The one before our Christmas concert ...

Ed welcomed everyone to the last rehearsal of the year and challenged us to speak to someone we have never spoken to before. Nice. 

There were lovely letters to take away about the Canterbury trip, and Ed also thanked everyone who came to sing carols at the weekend. Oh yeah. And there was cider. 

Meet for 7.30 roughly start on Monday. Doors open at 7 of course. And we probably really start at 7.45. Running order is like St Abdrews, but with all our Christmas songs added. There was a flurry of folder flapping as we quickly added things in the right place. 

Our choir master recently spent some useful time with a speach therapist and extolled the virtues of a good gargle. This is something I often do with a tight/scratchy/tickly throat .... Sometimes badly making the water go the wrong way. Feels good though, so why not have a good gargle at the end of this blog post?

Woollies seemed to be absorbing most of the sound today. Oh dear. Time for an OY! Well several of them. And then some 'over the top' singing. Nice. It's all about  tehnics! 

Then we learned how to do a great big STAR but I can't blog that because it would give away our trade secret, and we are professionals after all ...

During break time I was very brave and went roght to the back where I talked to Nicky and Jo and swapped facts. Fun. People still ask about the wedding, which is lovely. Look out for some pics of DFS at that event, coming soon! 

Ed wanted to have a play with 'a little help from my friends' and put it to a vote. Motion carried. Ooops. Be brave!

Of course I'll be back on Monday to blog the concert, but I may as well say thanks and happy Christmas :-) keep singing and also, gargling. Specially in ASDA. XXXX

4 December 2014

A big thank you from Ed for rocking Preston last weekend! We will be invited back, and we may well pop Ed on a podium so we can all see him. 

Also, news on the up coming Canterbury trip and a brief itinery. £175 per person with lots of fun laid on. 

On Satrday, 12.45 at new bond street, singing our Christmas medley. And on Sunday 12.45 in Wyke! So a busy weekend for those that can make it. 

Applause all round for the congregation of St Andrews, who on sunday, during service, made our charity total up to £400 split between them and The Samaritans! Tops!

Also ed made a plea for as many of us as possible to get to the launch of Dorch DFS on January 7th at URC. We have a fabby extra practice. 

Then, gently and just for timing, we slipped softly into our Christmas medley also acting as a nice warm up too! All Saints had the tree up of course and those extra large baubles we all love do well. It doesn't block half the screen like it used to though ...

Then we sang 'When We Were Small' with the composer in the house!

And had fun again with 'Fairy Tale of New York' ... It's harder in monochrome I have to say. Ladies in italic. 

The timing of that was just over 15 minutes so it was decided to perform '500 miles' but with every one singing all the parts! Starting softly we built it up all nicely till we are marching together those 500 miles in big, stompy boots. Oh yes. Stage right take a breath at the end of the line and stage left take a breath at the  start of the line, missing out the words found there, and all will sound great, and none shall pass out from lack of oxygen!

One more run through of When We Were Small with Ed bashing out the melody in true school teacher style! Choir did a lovely version A Capella when Ed stopped bashing, which was nice. He encouraged better diction, and we stood for a final version. 

The backing track is on the website if you have a spare 5 minutes tomorrow!

Then it was time to look at the medley again, which was very quiet in some places. Well he did tell us to start gently, in leu of a warm up! Ed let us stand to facilitate more energy and less politeness!

Wey valley are allowed to add all the funny bits into Rudolf The Red Nosed Reindeer and we are not to glare at them in a superior, grown-up sort of way. Nor leave the melody behind and join in. Hehe. 

All in all it's beginning to sound a lot like Christmas! Keep singing. Carols. Cat xxx

29 November 2014

The concert at St Andrews...

Lots of bright, well practiced and enthusiastic members of Dorset For Singing showed up at a new venue for a concert and jacket potato supper. Along with some lovley raffle prizes, the event benefitted both the church and this years charity, The Samaritans - we raised £180 pounds for them! Awesome!

Ed and other members recived lots of lovely feedback about both the choirs performance and that of the soloists too. We were singing many songs which were brand new to us, and our voices filled the church in an amazing way. 

All the soloists, both the seasoned and the brave did a sterling job. But something really magical happened when Linda began to sing about the bird-lady seated by a London cathedral. St Andrews on bells began to peal and one could almost imagine the greatdul pigeons and the cockney sparrows on the grey streets!

The jacket potato supper went down a treat too, DFS also get 10 out of 10 for creativity too. Come and see us next month at the Pavillion! 

Love, Mrs Cat, the blogger xxxx

23 November 2014

The one where the blogger got married!

And blogged a huge thank you to dear Ed and awesome Dorset For Singing, for blessing us and all guests with your singing. I love you, but not because you came to my wedding. Keep singing and Love from Mike and Cat XXX

27 November 2014

The one with the sexy new folders. 

The words for 'You raise me up' and 'So happy together' have been added to the folders, and of course our song list, otherwise our concert would have been a little short. 

After the warm up a spot of concert etiquette for any of those feeling rusty. Ed demonstrated how to hold a folder, not easy if you have small hands. Also, when to page turn, please don't do it while the audience applaud. Receive it with grace and a smile. Then, on mass, flip those lyrics! No discussing success or lack of successful delivery in between songs.  

Then most of us used folders to run through the songs, practicing reading and memorising a line, and looking up to sing it. 

If you are not sure of the timing for Stars please have a listen to a recording of the song. You tube is always an ecellent place for homework!

Lots of songs that need a lot of energy here so that they don't sound flat. Be aware of the key change in 500 Miles as that can be an area where our weariness can show!

Fairy tale of New York to end with today!

See tou Saturday potato lovers! Much love from The Cat xxx

Thurs 20th November 2014

The second one in the common room. And closely followed by one in the dining room next week. It's found underneath the common room but boats better acoustics, peas in the corners and chewing gum under the table!

Looking forward to next may which will be very busy. A bit like the end of this term. Ed reminded choir of our two concerts and of course a small, fun wedding on Sunday where I will feel really blessed if you sing two DFS classics as Mike and I sign the register!

1pm on the 6th December for a concert at Victorian show afternoon! And Thurs 18th around 6pm for a special concert to bless the elderly. 

Extra rehearsal on the 11th December with nibbles and fun. Oh and singing. Maybe. 

Then it was time to sing. And this week we had the smashing new tyros 5 to accompany us with not a floppy drive in sight. Ed wanted to have a good whizz through. So we did. Jack had to add some extra words to San Fransisco. 

We haven't sang Take Me Home Country Roads for a while so we sang it through while Ed played live, and did really rather well. We skipped Mr Blue Sky for now, going straight into our awesome rendition of Old Friends, clinking imaginary tankards as we went. Well ok just me then. Sounds like a good new year song to me. Or maybe an end-of-the-wedding party... Just sayin'.

Sadly we found we had rusty Stars so we quickly moved on. 

400 miles later we were toting our Scottish accents and havering like pros! This one builds in a really effective way, when we all sing the right parts!

Time for a Fairy Tale of New York, and all the ladies got the tune wrong and we had to start all over again. Naughty. 

And our grand finale was the Christmas medley, now with backing track and a brief word about new sexy black choir folders, which should be available soon if you want one!

And the extra bonus was running through the song Ed wrote about The Christmases We Had When We Were Small. Sprouts don't get a mention once I don't think ...

13 November 2014

The one with the Floppy Disc Drive!

Back in the common room again... But next week we will be back in the porch.

Ed reminded everyone about our up and coming events. He didn't mention that you may sing for us, at My Wedding, during the signing of the register, and we have two telly screens to pop the words on for you! 23 November, and any question cathy@raggyrat.co.uk. Big bonus is Ed as our entertainment post lunch. Tops!

Good soloists can apply to be in a new musical!

Dum dum diddly, off we went! With sirens and hamsters to follow. Honestly, it all makes great sense really!

We sang our first song for Glenis who sadly passed away ...

Let's go to San Francisco needed some brighter notes. And possibly some notes in tune. 

500 miles had been split into parts, parts for solos, parts for groups, some for rows and then a super stage left and stage right split. Such fun! The soloists were perfect and got a round of applause. Please do the high harmony if you can. 

Well done to everyone who got north of Cirencester! 

Islands in the stream. Not bad. 

A new song next, all about remembering the Christmases when we were small. Very small. Much smaller. It's written by Ed for wey valley kids. Ed sang it for us. It appeared to be in a key for small people after all, but we got the hang of it after Ed broke it down for us! We learn quickly. 

Seriously. You have to be here. 

Treat time next as we gallop through a Christmas medley! Hanging up our stockings on the wall. Jingle bell rock. Rocking around the Christmas tree. Let it snow. Winter wonderland. I saw mommy kissing Santa Claus. Rudolf the red nose reindeer. White Christmas. We wish you a merry Christmas. 

Next a colour-coded cleaned up fairy take of New York. Men, ladies, both and all. Whatever that means. 

Such fun. Now it's time Ed lays down a track. And ting. I love you. 10 more sleeps xxxx

6th November 2014

The one with the wedding 
announcement! (More practical info below). 

In notices, Ed has been turning down concerts, but we will still rather busy. 

Concert 29th November. Parking at church is a little limited so roads must be used. 

Victorian show night - - pefromance at 1pm Satrday 6th December! So, more of a show day then! We will sing with the Wey Valley choir, numbering around 12. This will be a 20min medley of Christmas songs that we all know and love. 

Wyke square 12-ish on Sunday 7th! 

Monday 15th December is our Pavillion show of course, 7.30 start. 

May 8th 2015 we will sing at All Saints church Portland. 

We will be in the west-wing next week, for our practice, as other rooms are booked for exams. Follow the signs! 

Finally I announced that I would be really pleased to see lots of choir at my marriage to Michael on the 23rd November 2014. Oh yes. (My hands were shaking!) The service kicks off at 10.30 and you are all welcome, either then or nearer to 11 or 11.30 to see us tie the knot! Please do consider singing some songs with Ed while we sign the register :-)

Then we walked 500 miles! And it felt like we ran it! And then Ed made us do it all again. But later. 

Then we went to San Francisco. And Jack was doing really well without a working monitor in front of him. Well done Jack. But choir was behind the beat so Ed had us stand and sing it again only much faster. And a second time, even faster, to ignite some energy! And finally at normal speed!

Never let her slip away, we got to sit down for! Phew! But there only seemed to be Julie on backing vocals. More diction. High cheek bones and cheese! Ed had fun playing at interviewing us. Camply. Oh yes. With the dad dance too. 
Ed thrashed out the harmony parts, and it made a difference. 

Old blue skies next. It has very awkward spots, pointed out by Big Ron. But we have improved. Julie suggested we split into two. 

The way old friends do, had a new backing track which was spelled right. 

And 500 miles again to finish. With impromptu solo parts. Which turned out to be quote a few of us, so there may be competition next week when we decide the real solo parts! 

Keep singing choir, and see you next week in some far flung double classroom!  Xxx

23 October 2014

The one where I borrowed Jenny's glasses, in order to blog. And I think they are much better than mine!

Then we did a lovely new standing warm up, and a bit more sitting down! Will possibly 11 songs to run through, we needed a double portion. 

29 November concert had some nice shiny posters for us to put up, and some sexy red tickets for punters. There is going to be supper for choir members at a bargain £2 each. 

It's half term next week so don't come. Ed will be in Devon. 

1. Islands in the Stream. It had a shady beginning but we recovered well, and had a perfect ending!

2. Let's Go to San Francisco. Coming on really nicely. More work on the papas!

3. Take Me Home Country Roads. Woooo hoo!

4. Never let her slip away. Just one 'but' too many!

5. Mr Blue Sky. Hmmm. In the bag? The main thing is, remain positive. HOMEWORK. 

6. The Way Old Friends Do. Some lines are a bit rushed. 

7. Stars. A manly song. It is going to work, despite a backing track that is difficult to follow. 

8. Save the Best For Last. Ed wants you for a solo for this one. Apply after half term. It's not a song for choir. 

9. I'm Gonna Be. I'm getting drunk. Nice. 
Ed was only sad because only half his backing track was saved. Aw. 

10. Come What May. A tricky one. Maybe another solo?

11. With a Little Help From My Friends. Needs responses. Men and ladies. Not and easy key either!

16 October 2014

Tonight Jean, from Weymouth Samaritans, came to give us a bit of info and say thank you to DFS for giving them out support this year. Remember you don't need to be suicidal to give them a ring and you will find a supportive listener at the end of the line...

16 thousand calls were answered last year by the volunteers. The Samaritans also reply to emails and texts. Jean is looking forward to attending one of our concerts. 

With a few weeks to our concerts, tickets are not available for a pavvy concert on 15 Dec and we are at St Andrews on the 29th November!

Islands in stream first, Dolly Parton parts at the ready! After a sing through Ed announced that he would like a harmony part all the way through, especially as there are some low parts at the beginning, stretching the femail vocals a bit. We broke the song down and also ditched a bit of a scouce accent along the way!

More diction please, and do not under any circumstances put your jaw out while attempting a lovely wide 'Aaaarghs'. Cough. 

Let's go to San Francisco always requires a careful spell check by me and a bit less volume on the backing track this time around! Be really brave in the pah pah paaaahs, because there can be a bit of contrapunzal going on ... In other words stay in key, and let your hair down!
Things got really interesting. There's always one!

'Never let her slip away' made me feel old. I made up some alternative lyrics for this when I was in secondary school but we won't go there! This ones sure to get our fans swaying!

'Stars' we are, singing this sweet number from Les Mis in the wrong key, and stood to sing it again in the original key of D. More anger needed. 

500 miles to the last song, well it really felt like we had been jogging after singing the Proclaimers number, but we had lovely strong lungs for a rousing courus, singing together 'the way old friends do'. Wow. Have I told you I love you lately? You raise the hairs on the back of my neck sometimes! Cat xxxx

Bonus Blog! Because I love you!

Now if you want to set your yearly diaries right, here's a lot of info that Ed shared yesterday!

"Just in case you haven't noticed the forum recently, here at the latest posts

Proposed Trip:

We are looking into the possibility of a choir trip to Canterbury from Friday 15th May until Sunday 17th May. This would be in conjunction with a choir called Lemon Zingers run by a friend who used to teach in Weymouth called Lemon Otter, and is a fab vocal coach. Costings for the trip will be around £175 to include accommodation, insurance, coach travel, two breakfasts, two evening meals and Sunday lunch, bargain! If you're interested please email dfs@live.co.uk and you can reserve a place.

Dorset for Singing Dorchester:

Breaking News! Plans are now in place for the Dorchester branch of Dorset for Singing and the launch evening is almost certainly going to be on Wednesday 7th January at 7pm at the United Reformed Church, South Street, Dorchester. Parking will be available free of charge in the car park by the new council offices, and the entrance to the church is from Charles Street. DfS Weymouth gold members can upgrade their membership for just £10 and can come along to both choirs for the rest of the year, if they fancy! The launch party will hopefully involve a short concert by DfS Weymouth and a Q&A session before rehearsals begin on Wednesday 14th January. More news to follow.

Term Dates

25th September
2nd October
9th October
16th October
23rd October

Half Term

6th November
13th November
20th November
27th November
4th December

Christmas Break

7th January, Dfs Dorchester Launch
14th D, 15th January W
21st D, 22nd January W
28th D, 29th January W
4th D, 5th February W
11th D, 12th February W

Half Term

25th D, 26th February W
4th D, 5th March W
11th D, 12th March W
18th D, 19th March W
25th D, 26th March W

Easter Break

22nd D, 23rd April W
29th D, 30th April W
6th D, 7th May W
13th D, 14th May W
(Fri 15th - Sun 17th May proposed Canterbury trip)
20th D, 21st May W

Half Term

3rd D, 4th June W
10th D, 11th June W
17th D, 18th June W
24th D, 25th June W
1st D, 2nd July W

Now I need a lie down!"

2nd October 2014

The late start to the term - for Cat!

Well back in the deep end of DFS was I, and so efficient was Ed that he handed me a crib sheet with all the notices and songs. I refused to type it word for word of course. 

Tonight was the selecting this years charity night, with nominations being voted for at the end of our session together. 

We discussed the new clothing option which is tops of choice embroidered with our famous rainbow logo. Gave our new groovy pens a plug and moved onto next years trip to perform with lemon otter's choir. 15-17 May in Canterbury. 

DFS Dorchester is being launched in January next year. This is the pound land of choir world. The presence of DFS Weymouth is requested to perform and answer questions from new hungry singers. 

Unlike last week which controversially lacked warm up, we hit a few scales! 

Ed's lovely print out reproduced just for you, here! Thanks Ed, you saved me some typing, but that's not why I love you!

Islands in the stream sounded lovely apart from a bit of a dip at the point of the key change. Then we worked at out country accents and a soft start. Oh yes. Magic three pennies was brought into play for the first time in our 6 years together. The penny dropped. We got it right thrice. Then stood to perform! Don't forget to pause on the dots. 

Last week, 'Let's Go to San Francisco' blew Ed clean away. Looks like a natural choice for Dorset's best choir. A shy start this week especially this week, but then all the harmony people rembered how cool they were and all was well. Coffuffles not required. 

After watching the Rock Choir sing 'Mr Blue Sky' we jumped to singing 'The Way Old Friends Do' with a smashing, although not dog-friends backing track!

And this just in folks- we are supporting the samartans this year. Cause everyone needs a good simaritan. Keep singing. Cat xxxx

10 July 2014

Back in the common room again, DFS followed on from the oxford exclusives and started with notices insead of a warm up. 

Ed asked for requests for lyrics, so that he can bring them on concert night. This was our very last rehearsal and we had the song order ready to run through. I will be printing mine last minute as usual and hoping I don't run out of ink!

Big changes next year to folders for lyrics, and less use of the big screen. I did notice last week just how much you stared at the thing instead of looking at me!

Finally our warm up was singing happy birthday to Jigsaw-Jenny then right on with our songs!

Secret Love - mind the gap!

Dream a little dream - nice big, confident BUMS please men! Ba-ba-ba-ba-Bum!

On top of the world -  ooops bit of an unsynchopated start there! I wonder if that's even a word?

Long and windy road - fine, I fixed that one last week! When I had such fun!

Heaven is a place on earth - free 'woo' too! Nice a Capella too!

Sing - with Linda as Catherine's stand in for Pavillion night. Very nice too Linda. It's always nice to hear new soloists at DFS, even this late into the academic year. 

So happy together - we were tired tonight perhaps we wore ourselves out cracking this one last week too!

The shoop shoop song - hold those lovely long notes. 

You make me feel so young - mind the gaps!

First of May Edge - we did ok it was just two lines missing from the words!

A nightingale sang in Berkeley square - it will be alright on the night folks.. 

Somewhere over the rainbow - our official last song. A very controlled song. Enough of the beery sliding!

You raise me me up - our secret encore. I'll make sure Mike shouts MORE very loudly!

Big round of appluase anyone. You made sure you didn't peak too soon! Email Ed if you want backing tracks and call me if you need a conductor. Love you xxxxx

3 July 2014

The one with the Cat conductor ...

Well you guys, I have had by now a number of occasions to be proud of Dorset For Singing, and tonight was definately one of them. I really mean it when I say I would like to honour you, for all that you do for our choir. I mean, if it was just singing you like, you could do that in the shower. But you give up your time for both practice and concerts, and help to change lives too with our fund raising as well as our amazing entertainment! I can promise you I'm sober writing this and I haven't got tears rolling down my cheeks. 

So anyway, there we all were, and this is a pic of me wondering how I ended up as front man for the evening or even how it was all going to work out! I even had a look back on the Facebook thread to see if I had said anything vaguely along the lines of 'pick me I can conduct a choir', but no - I only found the comments where I had nominated two teacher friends for the job!

So I still have no idea what made Ed ask me last week, and even less of an idea that made me say 'yes of course' but I'm glad I did because I learned something new, and we all got to see Dave again! Yay Dave!

We had a folder of 7 nice backing tracks, but had to hunt to find the words. well done Dave for ferreting out some from the website and well done Ed for giving me a nice yellow folder of all the other songs that we weren't going to be singing tonight, but that's fine i will keep it for our concert on the 22nd July, and i will be bringing my kittens so get your laser pointer out, Jack Von Trap!

Also in notices, Oxford trip dinner choices need to be mailed to  dfs@live.co.uk, and next week would trippers please be in the common room for special practice at 6 pm. Everyone else please at the usual time and in the same place, and with an awesome raffle prize or two, so that Carol can make up those lovely baskets that did so well at the Pavilion last time!

By the end of the Last sing of the King And I, when you all stood up and could barely see me, i think i had really got the hang of this old conducting lark, but i also want to thank you for being kind to a novice and laughing at all my jokes. When Ron popped out to call his agent, i really thought there was going to be a mass exodus to the chip shop, but instead me and Dave got a round of applause and we all had a good sing through which is good for the lungs as well as the soul! I also know why Ed gets to 'glowing' so much out there, because i was cooking when we finished! Thank you for soldering on bravely when i got it wrong and showing me all your super powerful long notes too! You are, truly, awesome and i love you to bits! Keep singing, Cat XXXX 

26 June 2014

The one with the old warm up ... DFS VLE revisited ...

We are going to use this warm up next week when Ed and Jack will be away. Dear old Dave will be back as sound man and yours truly will be playing the part of Ed Hintze. Oh dear. Who's still coming?

Tickets are now on sale for our concert priced at £5 each for grown-ups. Bring your youngsters as they get in free and of course, the children are our future! And the oxford people had a successful practice before choir propper, so well done to them. 

Secret love went well, but numbers for the echo parts were down to just 2 people, who will be supported on this backing track by a French horn. Don't forget to do a short 'shout-it!' The key change has been axed, and the song worked well without it!

Nightingale next, tricky. There was a gap in the middle which will be filled with tap dancing next week. 

Shoop shoop Song - right is right if that means anything to you? There was some hot debate about who sogs what, as this song is also being sung by the oxford trippers too! The last phrase needs to go higher at the end so it will fit with the chords. Then the 'he' needs to be a 'he-ee' and the 'oh no's' really so need to be sung not shouted. Please. No frankie Howard!!

Oh no.....

On Top of the world we are at DFS. Ed wanted us to mind the gap, did a bit of Lee Marvin, and off we went - remembering to pause and wink. We got the notes all right which is lovely but we needed more BOUNCE! To go along with the 'touch of Febreeze' I should imagine! 
Dream a little dream of me, especially if I am missing like last week! Big bum note to start with, so we had a careful listen before having another go. Great base part from Big Ron. Thank you Big Ron! Who knew that Ed appreciated men's Bums so much?

You make me feel so young DFS. we are having a new ending with 4 X so young and no high part ... Please run across the meadow and not around it please. The effect is much more romantic ...

Then we ended with goodbye to love! Which we know really well so that's the treat at the end of all our hard work. I wonder what will be in store next week? I will send a quick appeal to ed to give me the practice running order and I'll say my prayers so I'm not too rubbish that we all have to go put for kebabs instead. Love you. Get Your YouTube on! Cat xxx

12 June 2014

The one where Fulvia ruined the hiss with one of her pouts. Then we went all gregorian with a wonderful low hum ....

Tonight we did notices before warm-ups and embarked on a massive singathon through the rainbow, I mean through the 20th century which we have already left far behind us. Sorry about that I just typed what we sung!

I had enoght time to take a breath and list the numbers in our marathon, apart from the ones I am much too young to know of course...

Dream a little dream of me
Somewhere over the rainbow
It don't mean a thing (if it ain't got that swing)
A nightingale sang in Berkeley Square
You make me feel so young
Oh! Carol!
Top of the world
The shoop shoop song
I wanna be the only one

Then we discussed how well we felt the songs had gone, popping them into piles of yes, no, and potential. The shoop shoop song won, and then we looked again at Dream a little dream of me, including the original key via YouTube. Then Ed lifted it to c + 3 and we had at it all over again. Bonus points if you remember who wrote it ...

Then we did Somewhere over the rainbow again but all I could here was the sublime Eva Cassidy version, so this time I did some listening to us being Judy Garland, weighing up pies, and sliding all over the place like top trombone players. Somewhere Rover doesn't bare mentioning here. Then we sang it scared, and it was much better. Key is E flat minus 3... 10 out of 10 for lyrics the like of which we don't see nowadays!

Back to the nightingale again in E flat minus 2 ... Followed by You make me feel so young, but most wanted to drop down a little on account of that high note! B flat - 2 helped to keep away from a weaker sound on the high parts. Then Ed demonstrated a cool, funky ending. 

Oh! Carol! Being rather high the first time around had another outing, and felt much more comfortable at G - 4!

Back On top of the world again were we, and that old thigh slap helped us to leave the meaningful gap that was missing in the first run through! We did ok with the original key and Ed reminded us of the lovely man parts we tried last time. Oooer.

Cher voices out for a bit more shoop shoop, and we lovely DFS fell naturally into a balanced split and Mr Ed was pleased, then showed us some harmony parts for the mid section. 

Squeezing in secret love to finish, I felt all gooey and lovely as I listened to the lyrics, coz it's no secret I love you to bits and you fully deserved your round of applause! Well done Xxxx

5 June 2014

Not now Ron...

Apparently we had really good feedback from our concerts espially the one at All Saints Church. Ed thought there were some very good highlights and promised to get more of Michael's footage up. A member of the congregation told one of our number that some of the songs were not suitable to be sung in church. Haha. She obviously wasn't there when I sang Honey Honey at Wey Bay Methodist church but that's a whole 'nother story!

Ed asked for a show of hands for a concert at the Pavillion on Tuesday 22 July during school holidays. Same format as usual with choir singing and some solo slots. Many people can make that, and put up thier sticky hands, so it's going to be firmly booked. 

Sexy new choir folders will be available to buy from September, to facilitate us breaking away from staring at the screen. Ed is changing his job at wey valley which will help him to ditch school paperwork and do more DFS paperwork and possibly get videos edited and uploaded. 

Then we cracked on with Secret Love, a brand new song to sing at the pavilion. After singing it through Ed added a disco beat. Look out for 'a no-pen door'. We don't want any of those! I hadn't actually heard this song so I felt very young and got on with some fabrication on the blog. Harmonies and descant parts will be added next time. Then DFS added a meaningful gap and Ed declared it perfect before making everyone stand and perform. Is anyone else like me and needs to hear it 20 times before they know it? Hhmm. Now I don't feel so young any more. 

Next new song was Hard To Say I'm Sorry by Chicago. We gave it a go with a backing track and found out he had legs. Listen in on you tube folks!

Dear Darling is a dreadfully modern song and we went straight into the backing track leaving me at a loss for a tune again! I will definitely be spending some time with you tube while I chop celery.

Ed asked for a vote as this song felt very different. Homework might help and we could revisit this song later. 

Bonfire Heart sing-a-long next with James Blunt leading. Bless him. 60% yes votes for this song. There was a suggestion that our brand new WHOLE ROW of men could sing the lower lines. 

Toto's Africa was slapped up on the screen next, very much inspired by another music festival entry this year. But there seemed to be too many words to fit into the lines. 

In impromptu Freddy interpretation from Ed as we we rocked our way through One Vision. This one would work well with a soloist. 

From the redicolous to the sublime, we ended were we began with, with a bit of Secret Love, disco beat included despite to votes from nay-sayers! We ended on a good note. Yay! Harry got a round of applause for being better behaved than Jack, and we are invited to bring in raffle presents for Carol to collect and collate. 

23 May 2014

The All Saints that is a church not a school ...

Dorset for Singing gathered to wow Portland once again with their rich and varied repertoire, during their fourth visit to the Easton Church. We must be good to be asked back again, and we met the new Mr Reverend, and sang our socks off after eating all the custard creams...

All except Michael Greenaway who ate all the Malted Milks, but he needed the sugar after perching on the edge of a pew all night working the video camera to avoid nightmare editing later ...

Here is one that Ed and Jack have put up for us to enjoy - more please dear Team Hintze!

Some nice Solo work from Ed, Julie and the infamous Blogger,and  for those that asked i was singing this lovely song by Audrey Assad. Thank you for the hugs, and the lovely things you said.

We did not have a very big audience, so might need to work that PR head of mine and see if Ed slips me a free kebab for phoning Wessex FM about the next 'Do'.

See you soon for our final set of practices, leading to a top concert somewhere back in Weymouth, when we will endeavor to make hearts happy and raise more money for Julia's House ....See you soon, Love you LOADS - Cat XXXX

22 May 2014

Ed stood at the front with his music stand ready to conduct the penultimate practice! And reminded us that Fair In The Square starts at 11.40 on Monday.

Ed will be setting up from 6pm tomorrow, and needs our good selves sat in the front seats from 7.20 and then he coached us in acting confused when requested to sing something for an encore. I will make sure my fiancĂ© shouts 'More!' 

Let The River Run still had issues with Ar-ses and Ass-es (careful now) and needed a brighter sound for the bridge, which moved from an Mmmmm to an Ooooo...

Long And Winding road is going to work really well in church, despite not being Jack's favourite song. We are missing the overlap echo bit, bit Ed said it was too late to thrash that one and so Jack was happy especially because after tomorrow's concert we are putting the long and winding road to bed!

Heaven Is [still] A Place On Earth. Please bring your Ooomph tomorrow. 

So then we sing Sing which I keep faking as its in such a funny key and I mustn't wreck my voice for my solos and sexy duet with Ed after half time. Please be reminded that 'clearer' rhymes with 'hear-ya'. And we did it again. So I sang it like a man!

Now the audience have got used to us and its time to take them in a new direction, and we may hear them singing along as we sing So Happy Together! Which reminds me, I still don't have a sheep, which might have helped Ed not miss out a line ...

Bread maker, I mean Starmaker, has been eliminated from Monday but is still in the line for tomorrow night! More cheese please, a lot more GLEE! Oh yeah baby ....

1st Of May is sounding lovely if you like snakes. We didn't even run it all the way through. Because we needed to slip in some Dreaming! Always the danger of an extra YOU in that one. Ed was pleased, and he even let us miss out Goodbye To Love, and even The King And I.

The medieval version of Midnight Blue was ditched in favour of Mr HinTze delivering a lecture in rhyming couplets and t'was lovely indeed. Punchy please. See you tomorrow at 7.20 raring to go. 

Love you and see you then xxxx 

15 May 2014

The one with the announcement... Yes the one about me and Mike. I think I really would like a whole bunch of Dorset For Singing at the wedding, now you mention it. How much do you charge?

Oxford people to stay behind at the end. 

Portland concert is next week and we will be supporting a lovely duet between Ed and Julie - the prayer!

Performance in the square has the same set but swapping Starmaker for Dreaming, the Blondie one ...

Time for a river-run through ....
Ass-king not arse-king for the taking please for Let The River Run, we need a nice flat northern 'A'. We had to get all the water puns out of system before a second run through. And Jerusa-lum not Jerusa-lem. Just so we are singing from the same hymn book. 

The Long And Windy Road is a real audience pleaser and will make them sigh. After the excitement of the river this ones going to take them places they never knew Dorset's Best Community Choir could take them!

Next they will be in heaven, for it is a place on earth. 

And next with a special guess soloist we sang Sing ...

We may not even always be in tune, but I think we are generally So Happy Together! 

Starmaker next. No one groaned. Much. But choir did put their everything into it and Ed was pleased. And everyone forgave little Jack for being tired from doing SATS and hiding the words at one point. Life is good!
It isn't The First Of May anymore, but we relived that heady moment. The Apples. The kiss. Your mum shouting you in for your tea ... 

Then along with YouTube we did our special parts for Midnight Blue. Ooo Yeah. 

Then Julie took a perch next to Ed so we could do some oooo for a song we have not done for a while with choir. Cool Duet choice guys. 

Love you. See you next week ...

8 May 2014

The one where you only stay behind if you haven't sorted out your Oxford issues ....

11.40 is the time for our performance at the fayre in the square venue on bank holiday Monday 26 May. 

We reviewed our running order for All Saints and jumped straight in with Let The River Run! It was rather flat and lacked something. Make sure you get a warm up before our concert because we need to give it our best. We divided to share out the overlaps. Ed wanted to give this another run through to break it down, but stopped when he was happy!

The Long And Winding Road lacked drive. It must not become a long and winding dirge! Ed demoed a few actions but we won't be trying those. So the second run through was about finding more DRIVE, seriously no pun intended!

Heaven Is A Place On Earth was ok. More harmony parts please!

Sing - The Gary Barlow number we remembered very well, with Catherine back for the solo part. We discussed the overlapping sections which worked so well last time we sang this! More people needed for the echoes too! At the second run through we were looking to work that overlap and we were treated to  Jack's upstaging of Ed. Haha. Julie said we should do the ending without music and we cracked it. Yay!

How Happy Together! 

Star Maker sounded good but more lower harmony in chorus would help to really build that up. 

First Of May was ok!

Goodbye To Love gains a Pass too! Yay! 

Comments were invited from choir members after our first run, through but no one was brave enough. 

Ed wanted to take to the piano and run through Midnight Blue, mostly our parts. Needs some YouTube listening, so that's your homework chaps!

We stood for You Raise Me Up, which is very apt and going to be our secret encore so please don't read this if you are coming to the concert. The rest of you, well done Dorset For Singing and have a great week! Cat xxx

1st May 2014

Hello everyone on our late return to summer term... Blogging live from the jolly old school hall ...

Concert in three weeks folks, so we are revisiting a couple of old friends for our Portland concert on Friday 23rd May 7.30 ... Solos welcome! We will be singing at the Fair In The Square on that bank holiday Monday too .... Time to be confirmed to end all confusion. 

After a super fast warm up, we tackled The First Of May ... I will have to tell Mary when I get home. She is 6 on the second and this is a favourite choir song! After doing really well that we dug out Star Maker, we're happy now! Ed said we might not need to practice again ... B Flat please Ed!

Ed wanted to reintroduce Midnight Blue which is mostly a solo by him. Jack added in an In and then took it out again. Priceless. And in the Bee Gees flavoured bridge, Ed added in an In and there were frowns. You have to be here, really! Over to you tube, to reINstall all the INs again ....

So happy together! This song makes me want to work/animate a puppet sheep. You know, just at the end there... Look out for the eyebrow moment of course. There won't be a dry seat in the house! Mind the treacle folks. Over the top annunciation please. 

We decided on You Raise Me Up too, as That church always asks for an encore. We also considered Sing, the Gary Barlow version, not our Karen again! So we could try that next week if Ed reads this blog post. He doesn't read these, does he?

Jack found us Raise me up words that were not quite complete, but we didn't do too badly having a crack at that!

Then jack found a karaoke version of SING, and we waited for it to buffer ... We did a lovely job of that too so we can leave the hall smelling quite sweetly tonight!

Carol nominated Good Bye To Love for our finale, and all stood to make a joyful noise. Superb. Love you, keep singing. Running order next week xxxx

24 April 2014

Hope you had a happy Easter guys! But please pass it on, choir practice tonight has been cancelled at short notice!

Have a nice time with your iPod, love you Cat xxx

27 march 2014

The last rehearsal before the Easter break....

Please don't come to a rehearsal next week, there's a social at Wey Valley school instead starting at 6.30pm. No taxies can enter after 9pm thought as the gates close for the caretakers bedtime. 

With the school hall all set up for the pupils very special Taser Service, Ed stood at the podium in conductor mode. I wonder what ever happened to the baton that the naughty corner gave him? Someone might email the school and tell them it's really spelled e-a-s-t-e-r though ...

So we kicked off with heaven being a place on earth. The ending wasn't quite what we seemed to be expecting though!
Be alert DFS. This song has a very short intro and is also in danger of a bum note start. I'm sure it will be alright on Sunday afternoon though!

So Happy Together as always! But in need of more bah-bahs... And something funny was happening with the computer. Or more specifically it's treatment of our backing tracks! It worked the second time around, with a really smart Gilbert-and-Sullivan sound too! 

The Long and Winding Road. Blogging live has its quirks. I'm sort of giving you a running order while listening to a conversation about the numbers of grandchildren some people has. Then I had another feel of Jenny's balls. Lovely.Energy  is needed for this number to keep the lack of cheek bones and dirge at bay. All stood to tackle it a second time. 

Dreaming. Dreaming is free even if the All Saints computer doesn't like Ed's endings. We really enjoy this one and it shows. Just a really funny gap to watch out for, near the beginning! Trying to work out the timing together proved hilarious, and included an impromptu honk of geese and a visit to lambing-live. 

Freedom. This week we definitely had enough Duddle-uts printed on our words, so that was good. Pay attention to those ^arrows^ near the end so your Freedom doesn't go up when it should go down ... Ed asked for more butt. Sorry, 'but'. 

I'll Say Goodbye To Love actually said hello to an almost intact ending. We only ran through it a second time because Carol likes it! 

King and I. The knight that never ends, cried Ed, as he gave us a break in order to say something very silly to someone new. So I wrote a few more lines of blog. Then it was time to tackle some last minute issues, and run through everything again!

We stood for our finale after Ed took numbers for our social, and numbers for any extra copies of music for Sunday, then it was bath time. Love you, keep singing! XXXX

13 march 2014

The one with the big breaths ...

Ed gave us a reminder for the Mother's Day concert, in two weeks at 2pm at the pavilion...

We started with Karen Carpenter and said Goodbye to Love in the key of original, but everyone but me found it a tad low. So then it went up to +3 and Ed found it much less dreary. I'll not get bidda. Don't forget to smile, and make good use of those big breaths. 

Surely heaven is a place on earth when we sing like hosts of the aforementioned realm? Baby I was afraid before, but I'm not afraid - anymore! And Ed was pleased ...

Good morning sunshine in the original key won't be ready but Freedom looked good with not a single doo-doo out of place. It's still in C+3 as it was last week! We do need another two lines of Duddle-uts though ... Ed got everyone on their feet to give it some welly. And we dooooooo.....

Dream time next without Debbie Harry. And not because I kept yawning tonight! We will perform it a little slower than she did, and without the very distracting drums but still in the original key of D for Dreaming.

We ended on a long and windy road, probably the one leading to my snuggly bed, especially if it's windy! 

Then we read the music festival feed and watched the best toddler in the world!

Next week we will have the definitive list and then a further two weeks to practice on those! Keep singing, remember I love you XXX

6 March 2014

The cat in the hat came back ... To blog!

Ed's ear infection caused him to take a sickie today so we had to have choir without him. 

So he didn't have the comments sheet, about the performance on Saturday at the music fesival, but he did give us some lovely feedback and the sad news that DFS are not invited back for Friday nights concert, unless of course anyone wants to come and watch!

Working towards 'the best of' we will be preparing about 25 minutes of songs for that concert, and we kicked off with Karen carpenter and I felt shocked. What have you lot being doing in my absence? It was in a shocking key (C+3), and so we slipped it to a C+2 and tried again. The extra long phrase had to have some breathing spaces slotted in, in two secret places! Sorry that all those 'aaaaahs' made me yawn ... Then we stood to perform and no one played air guitar after all...

Freedom next, and no I don't mean the accessible boat in Weymouth harbour, but the wham! song from our collective youth. Well ok just mine and Ed's, and at 'C+3' was a tad high for most of us ... Ed's choreography was excellent. And as for our singing, I'm not sure if we got it in the bag, but I think we hit it over the head quite a bit!

'The long and winding road' hasn't yet disappeared from our repertoire, and is well high at C+6! It may be missing some trombones and a banana. Alex volunteered to be a French horn. And then we went into the jungle, without so much as a mosquito net. 

Last song, plucked from the menu, left us 'happy together', in E-minor! 

Thanks to all those who said they missed the blog! I've really had fun doing it this week. Must have missed it myself. 

13th February 2014

The one with no blogger ...

And Ed said, "Missed u!! All confirmed for the Oxford trip, and King and I medley had its flat note sorted! Xx."

Which was nice. Have a nice half term folks, don't turn up next week and stay on top of that bum note ...

6th February 2014

The one with the chewing gum...

Good news and bad news ... the good news is that we have been accepted for Weymouth music festival. The bad news is that we are on at 9 0'clock in the morning! So a quick perform then back to bed me thinks ....

We will be singing the king and I number, well I won't, I had a prior booking. So please don't hate me for not being there to staple words onto. So we started with that one.. I don't need to add the key this time!

Then we dug out last weeks list in order to vote for song number two, which could not be a ballad, and Belinda Carlisle won so we cranked up the karaoke version! Then with the piano and our power point we added in more ooooo's and a smart key change! And it's ok we have next week too!

Meanwhile, as I blogged live(!), VOCALZONE re-tweeted Jacks marvelous stack of biblical throat lozenges, and sent me a private message too! Really working on that sexy sponsorship you know ....

Then we went back to the little problem from the king and I ... The WONDERFULS ...And the star-treck intro was ditched in favour of a more romantic lead in. Top E-ers a,omg us need to be really open and relaxed of course. See carol if you have any questions about this, although just which carol is really up to you! Which notes to hold and which ones to drop also had to be sorted out too. Then we gave it a complete run through, and were ready to sing something different! 

The bloggers throat was hurting so she did some more catch up and enjoyed the singing! 

So we almost finished with a bit of blondie and the paint chart song ... But it was pants, i mean it could really use some more work, so we dug out the Alex Day number! Perfect. Haha. Love you XXXXXX

Thursday 30th January

The one were i scrounged a VOCALZONE off someone else as I had forgotten mine!

 Music festival performance in three weeks folks! And with seven songs to perform tonight we stated with a nice camel-yawn and our classic warm-up!

In notices we plugged a drumming group at Weymouth, so speak to Joan for more info and wants to sell her keyboard. And possibly buy a drum!

Next week is D-day to decide on our trip!

Choir were keen to our king and I number for the music festival! But first we checked out tonight's tasks :-

1. In C! Which is a good key anyway. Just pretend its a song about happy things to give it that lift!

2. First a run through with the karaoke and then with ed ad his piano forte. Then a fine a Capella! Ed was pleased and purred approval (I got a pet cat recently). After applying some wonderful harmonies, Ed threatened us with THE DANCE ROUTINE which is like THE DAD DANCE only worse ....

3. We don't know this song. Well, I don't! Possibly dreary!

4. I've got the perfect choreography for this. Just wait till DFS find out! It's is all doing that Maori dance Hakka job! Cool beans ...

6. There will be no number 5. Some people were trying, some people were not trying and SOME people were VERY trying ...

7. F-minor minus 2. For the ba ba ba ba ba section I would like the former flag wavers at the back to wave sheep. Possibly not real ones! What do you think?

One song from that lot may be ditched!

23 January 2014

The one in the common room with nothing to play! So we started our warm up with humming and oooo-ing!

We have 2 concerts in May. Friday 23 at All saints church 7.30pm, and the rotary club festival of 'stuff' in hope square 26 may 11.30am.

Trip to be decided. Numbers will be checked, as we dont have 40 folks this time ... i am giving this one a miss so if that helps you make the decision to sign up, go for it ... guest blogs on the trip are welcome but please make sure you write them when you are sober!

We reviewed some of the song suggestions posted on our you tube site, the rest of what we looked at last week.

'You can't hurry love', and you can't hurry Dorset For Singing either! The first set of lyrics were too 'zoomed in', and I couldn't look at the second set as I had not taken any motion-sickness medication 2 hours before...

Mr Blue Sky was orange as well as swirly! Still it could be worse, it didn't strobe! Ed said we could try it again using piano forte, and in a different key, sometime - learn it for your homework!

Katy Perry's 'Roar' was played through by Glee, and although we tackled it as best we could, it has a lot of potential,  and we have plenty of time to Learn it! We had a good go at it, but 'Harold's' lyrics had a spot of lag. 

'Good morning sunshine' was fun, we did it much better that the last time we tackled it!

Tiny Michael Jackson popped up to sing 'I Want You Back' for us ... But it had too many words in it!
Blonde was 'Dreaming' way back when I was a twinkle in my daddy's eye! We liked that. Then we listened to Call Me! At this point in her career i believe she was really a frustrated interior designer. If you don't believe me, just check out the screen shot bellow! These days she might enjoy a bit of 60 minute makeover ... 

The beach boys entertained us next, 'wouldn't it be nice' if we could do this every night! We enjoyed that. 

Freedom by Wham! I just felt old, and a little bit cheesy ...

'Can't Help Falling In Love With You' has been done before, but this time in reggie style like UB40. We went straight in the karaoke version coz we are that cool... Yes we are!

Chicago 'You are an inspiration!' 80's moment indeed!

'Heaven is a place on earth' was so successful last week, that we went straight to karaoke version to sing.  But it was very swirly so I sat that one out. Tried to remember if I had had a Belinda Carlisle album, sadly I think I only had Debbie-somebody-or-other, and T'Pau. Sigh. 

Ed apologies for being poorly. And plugged his convert in Upwey tomorrow night! He also plugged his latest twitter account, so be sure to follow him @singinghints! Keep singing and remember i love you even if i blog very late XXXX

16 January 2014

The first one back after our Christmas break ...

Harry has bought a car and Ed's nicked it! This has enabled him to bring his own shop along, featuring bottled water and the lozenges called Vocal Zone - Biblical ingredients to sooth your vocal cords without the numbing properties of over the counter throat pastilles. (Did I do OK Ed?)

March 1st will find those of us that can attend singing at wey valley for this years music festival. Time to be confirmed. And perhaps choir numbers. I for one will be busy with a stall at WAND in Dorchester ...

Sunday 30th March we are singing at the best of Dorset. As we are of course. That's Mothering Sunday too! Times and date clashes to be confirmed. 

We are in the common room next week, and again on the 6th February. Funny red  chairs and non-acoutsics will be available too. 

Please use the forum on our website to suggest songs for us to sing this brand new term. And don't forget to say thanks to this winters' Carol singers who did a sterling job entertaining locals. 

And how about that trip to Oxford? £50 deposit needed by 23rd January please. 

Songs this week - 

We kicked off with Karen Carpenters Goodbye to Love. Finally settling in the key of D after a few grumpy faces!

A bit of Barry - Let's Hang On! We put it in the Maybe pile ...

We revisited seasons of love - the glee version! We will need to revise all our harmonies. 

The long and winding road is probably the only Beatles song I do not know, and it also needed a key change too. A flat. A flat what?

Heaven is a place on earth! We had a pop at that, possibly too many words involved!

Chain reaction! Ended in a chain reaction of laughter, when we all realised we never really new the words at all! After that my tummy hurt and it was hard to sing 'Happy Together' and it was settled in the key of C Minor. 

Monday Monday will be performed in D. 

Stand by Me, and Thank You for reading our blog!

Happy New Year 2014

"Got a total at last! We're sending £744.50 to Julia's House, blog away!"

What an impressive fund-total we raised from our December 12th concert at the pavilion. With many tickets sold on the door, a bit of a gamble on a 10p coin to win a smashing bottle of bubbly and of course some impressive hampers raffled off on the night too!

Great venue if you also like to dance and eat chips at a concert, and of course, a cast of local stars to entertain and amuse with especially good jokes about chefs ....

As a long term member of choir, I note that we have come a long way in our 5-and-a-bit years performing. And i have the original DVD to prove it! Now we have a repertoire almost as big as Ed himself, and an impressive spread of harmonies including some very unique tenor-ladies. Oh yes indeed ....

See you lovely people on the 16th of January with lots of energy and some chocolate for me. Just kidding. Energy is optional. Love you all, Keep singing, Cat xxxx