Well, it’s not quite Christmas Eve yet, but the vast majority of the week-and-a-half Christmas music festivities are drawing nigh to a close. With the Celtic-themed Clayton Christmas Concerts behind us after the matinee this afternoon, I’ve had quite enough bagpipes for a little while. You would not BELIEVE how loud those instruments can be in person! I’ve been amazed at how smoothly and easily these concerts have gone this year. Maybe the level of difficulty just wasn’t quite at its usual intensity, but regardless, I heard several comments that audience members were thrilled with the performance and loved the Celtic theme.
I, for one, am pretty much sung out. I feel like I earned the accomplished “sung out” feeling, though. Here’s the litany of the marathon that made up my schedule this week.
- Rehearsal and all-afternoon caroling last Saturday
- Two special music services at Church Street last Sunday
- Two-hour rehearsals on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday (at three different locations, no less!)
- Clayton concerts on Friday, Saturday (twice), and today
- Finally, singing special music—including the Handel tenor recitative/aria combo of “Comfort Ye” and “Every Valley Shall Be Exalted”—at Trinity UMC in Lenoir City today
That doesn’t include working three shifts at Puleo’s either. As we sang in the Hanukkah Fantasy piece for the Clayton Concerts, OY!
I feel two things upon writing out this list. No, make that three. First, I’m proud to say I did it, and with the exception of missing a half note in “Every Valley” and throwing off the string players accompanying me, the whole week went extremely well. Second, I feel like I might be a little be crazy for going through all of this. I’m mean, really? I didn’t write out the list to brag, despite what my sister is probably thinking right now. I wrote it to remind myself that this is a crazy way to end the year, but I wouldn’t trade it away. The third thing I feel is tired, which must be true because I’ve already forgotten what my original third thought was. Ha!
I bid you all a happy, musical Christmas and New Year—and just for something different, I decided to completely change gears from this week’s musical selections and present to you Amy Grant’s Tender Tennessee Christmas. It must be a testament to my childhood. Growing up, Christmas almost always saw our family driving two hours to one set of grandparents or the other (or both), and those trips were filled with the same musical selections on (gasp!) cassette tape recordings from the radio and who knows where else. The testament to my childhood here is that Tender Tennessee is about the only country~pop~ish song to which I can actually stand listening. Enjoy!