Monday, February 11, 2008

Cranberry Hymnal

Tonight, I had my chanting class. About twenty or so of us gather in one of the classrooms with our ELWs and we chant portions of the liturgies, the psalms, and we sing the occasional "Glory to God." It's fun, for the most part, because we get to sing/chant in unison. However, tonight we had to do a "round robin" exercise.

The young man sitting to my right volunteered to go first. Because we were moving counter-clockwise, that meant I was to be last. The first person would sing the "leader" part while the person to their right would sing the response.

About halfway through, I started hyperventilating mildly. I knew that we would eventually have to sing/chant by ourselves, but I had fooled myself into believing that we would do that with the professor or maybe in small groups. Boy, was I wrong! So, my friend to my left was like, "Are you going to be okay?" And I replied something, but I don't remember what. And then it got to be our turn and my friend sang the leader part and I had to do the other part. The professor was helping many of the respondents, so I was happy about that. We did that with another setting in the ELW, and I got to be the respondent again. That was a slight comfort.

Then, we got to the third liturgy and I looked and saw that he switched it, with the result that I would have to do the leader part. Now, don't get me wrong-I sing all the time. When I'm ALONE/in my car/not in a room with people who are good singers! I was worried. Thankfully, the guy to the left of the friend to my left didn't finish his "leader" part, so my friend finished it, and I got to do the response again.

At this point, the professor said something about how my voice had gotten higher, to where it should be, and that I did well. And he was pointing out some other things with some of us and then he was talking about me a bit more and I could feel myself turning red. You'll remember that I have talked before about how I have a tendency to turn red when I am put in the center of attention by others. Well, that definitely happened. When the professor turned around and saw me, he said, "Wow, you're REALLY red." And I started giggling, and to try to cover myself, I held up the hymnal in a joking sort of way like, "Which is redder; me or the hymnal?" Ha.

But anyway, class was over not much later and I was still very tense and nervous because the whole singing thing. I shouldn't be, but I was and still am. Some of my friends said that I "sounded great," but man.. It was painful! Ha. So, I'm going to work some more on singing/chanting on tune, and hopefully chill out before next week... Wish me luck!

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