Singing at the Stephansdom – Concert!

Soon enough, it was time to put on the performance dress, collect the music folder, and head for the bus, for an 8:30 performance.  The bus dropped us off across from the cathedral, right next to the place where the horse-drawn carriages wait – remember them?  We gathered in the Curhaus to warm up, then filed in through the cathedral side door, which put us right next to the performance space.  They obviously handle performances in the cathedral all the time.

We were gratified to see that we had quite a full audience.  No one ever gave us exact figures but the guess for this performance was over 700 people.  Here we are in the performance.  This is about half the chorus – Jim’s wide angle wasn’t wide enough to get the whole group from his seat:

A few minutes later, the forces were assembled and the concert began.  My view: left ...

You can see the bassist, a cello, and part of the chorus, with the stained glass windows in the background. Here’s the other half of the chorus, including the altos.  You can see my humble self third from the right, on the second row of singers, with my mouth appropriately wide open.  I have no idea what we were singing at that point.

... and right.

Jim got several photos of Dr. Lynne Morrow conducting that evening, of which I like this one best:

Tonight's program had three items: Songs of Strength, The Water is Wide, and, changing continents and centuries, the Requiem.

I can’t reproduce the concert in a written blog. I recommend again that you go visit Jim’s Smugmug gallery Singing Vienna, for more photos (of both the rehearsal and the performance) and several videos.

After several curtain calls, we filed out of the cathedral and across the plaza to the area where the horse carriages wait during the day.  I think this was about 9:50 PM; the concert wasn’t all that long.  Apart from the Mozart Requiem, which runs about 55 minutes, we performed Songs of Strength and Hope, a jazz arrangement of four traditional spirituals, and an arrangement of The Water is Wide, an American folk song.  It’s a good thing it wasn’t very cold, as we were in performance dress, which for the women is a sleeveless polyester A line dress with a gauze jacket.  The men (and women tenors) were in tuxedos, so they were warmer than the women singers.  And we waited, and waited some more.  This was very unlike our reliable driver Andy; what could have happened?  My notes indicate he arrived about 10:10 PM; it seemed longer, as we were standing next to the remnants the horses left behind as they waited for customers.  Apparently Vienna doesn’t clean up after them daily.

When Andy finally arrived with the bus, no one was surprised that it wasn’t his fault.  He parked the bus to get something to eat, and when he came out, another bus was parked behind him, blocking him in.  He had to go to three hotels to find the driver and persuade him to move the bus.  And so our concert in Vienna ended.

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