There are two events in the music department that I've been looking forward to all semester.  One is the NATS (National Association of Teachers of Singer) vocal competition.  The other is the performance of Beethoven's 9th symphony, for which we're collaborating with the local symphony orchestra and several university choirs.

These events take place on the same day.

This wasn't supposed to be a conflict; NATS has two rounds, the initial and then the finals, which take place in the morning and throughout the afternoon; the concert is not until 8 PM.  No problem, right?

Well.  Apparently the dress rehearsal for this concert is Saturday afternoon at 4.  Which is the approximate time of the final round of NATS.  Which I certainly hope to be performing in, since it's from the contestants in the finals round that they choose the winners.  The problem is, the director of the symphony orchestra has decided that any singers who miss the dress rehearsal - for whatever reason, including the competition - cannot sing in the concert.  Period.  No exceptions.  My choir director has tried to change his mind - the directors of the other choirs likewise.  But it's made no difference.

I realise it's his orchestra, his dress rehearsal, but still this decision makes very little sense to me for several reasons.  Firstly, he's excluding from his performance all the best voices, most talented singers, and most dedicated musicians, since these are the ones who generally make it to the finals in competitions.  Secondly, these singers - dedicated, talented - are the ones who are most likely NOT to need the dress rehearsal - to be able to just walk in and sing.  And thirdly, all these singers who are singing in the competition are also required to put in the time and energy to learn the choral portion of the symphony, not knowing whether they will actually get a chance to perform it.  I know that I, for one, have less motivation to learn the music knowing I may not perform it - but conversely, I'm afraid that subconsciously I won't sing my best in the competition, because part of me will want not to make the final round, so that I can sing the concert.  I'm feeling frustrated and conflicted and just plain upset, at the moment.

I know God wants me to learn something from this.  I know that I probably will.  But at the moment, I'm just mad.  I feel helpless, because there's nothing I can do to change anything - frustrated because no one made it clear before now that there would be this conflict.  I'm also annoyed with myself for being so upset and emotional about what is, in the grander scheme of things, a very small concern.  I'm just praying for calm acceptance for myself - and, if it be God's will, for the orchestra director to change his mind!


Apart from all this, I had a very nice week.  How was yours?  :-)