To sing or not to sing?

Nov 12th, 2012 | By | Category: Choir Events, Featured Articles, Top Post, Xinghai Prize International Choir Championships


Well, the answer to the question “to sing or not to sing” for all of us is, of course, “to sing”! However, the title of Johan Rooze’s lecture at today’s INTERKULTUR Choral Symposium in Guangzhou, China was aimed basically at this question, because first of all he stated about the situation of music in his native country:

“Classical choral music in the Netherlands is dead.”

Whew, strong stuff!

Later in his speech he explained, that classical music there was not dead at all, but that conductors and teachers failed to motivate students by connecting to their own world to music. He explained the issue by reference to some fun examples about cultural differences between students from the Netherlands (“Homework? WHY???”) and from Korea, where Rooze is living now (“Homework? YES!!!”). The idea is to make students understand this “why” in the world of music to reach a choral revival in the Netherlands.

Rooze’s conclusion of these thoughts about how to fascinate students for music, is to explain them the story behind the music and to communicate it. The main receipt is not that tricky:

“*Emotion – Inspiration – Feeling – Laughing – Crying – Tell a story – Communication”

At least, everyone in the audience understood, when Johan Rooze started working on Billy Joel’s “Lullabye” with Minjona Choir from Latvia (a female choir, beautiful in both voices and appearance!) to demonstrate what he tried to explain in theory before. What a difference it makes, whether you just sing notes and text or you tell somebody a story in song. So the answer to the above question is quite simple:

Sing! And tell us a story about your world of music.


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