Sunday, April 4, 2010

Bass falsetti

Yest. San Jose Peace Chorale had its annual practice/retreat up on Mystic Mtn (just above Alum Rock, an East San Jose latino neighborhood.) This poem's about what it took out of the basses to sing one semi-bilingual piece.

Bass falsetti

We struggle to master the rhythms
of “We All Smile (in the same language)”
in a 4-part arrangement of texts of saints
Juan de la Cruz & Teresa de Jesus,

that I know isn’t quite Spanish, but
isn’t quite not. The bass part’s high,
written way up on the staves,
forcing us to sing painfully high

in throat-straining falsetto. By the time
we reach the end, we're badly strained,
totally falsed-out; can this really be
what the composer wants for effect?

(Easter Day 2010, Santa Clara CA)v8

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