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Magic Choral Trick #91 One of the Ways that Less is More

Just came from working with a group of friends on the Bach Motet – Komm Jesu Komm and once again realized that the believability, and the right feel in almost every style comes most from what you sing less of.

In Baroque music the dance feeling is elusive until we back off from anything but the important beats in the bar – and the back end of every two note phrase.

In folk music we back off from any article or connecting phrase. Whatever would be de-emphasized in natural speech is almost dropped – so the story is as believable as if it were being spoken.

And in a Barbershop ballad, not only are the dynamics of natural speech duplicated, but as much as possible, so is the rhythm. The powerful emotion words are drawn out, but the connecting phrases are vocally more backed off – and are moved along quickly, as they are when we speak.

Tonight we got the Bach to dance by luxuriating in the important beats, and barely singing almost everything else.

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