Chant carves the voice

In the “Talent and Participation” page we differentiated musicianship from music ministry, and explained why the latter is essential to a solemn Liturgy.
This “right order” also manifests itself as time invested in music ministry rewards the musicianship of the minister. The reverse is not true.
Please consider the following:
  • We humans learn by imitation. Hearing a human voice naked, i.e. not enhanced by digitalization (microphone or recording), or not dressed up by instruments, allows our brain to feel what our “singing hardware“ must imitate. If all we hear is canned music (digitalized), our imitation skills become useless to teach us how to sing.
  • The “phrasing” of tones gives music its expressiveness, and its beauty. Music is a language. If you can speak phrases, consider it a good place to start making music. That is what chant is: words put into music. Actually, the Word put into music.
Not unlike the growing availability of GPS diminished our ability to read a map and our sense of orientation, I believe that the lack of a-cappella singing, the overwhelming use of percussive instruments (like the piano), of metered music (1-2-3-4) and of microphones in choirs are altogether diminishing our natural ability to develop our singing voice, and our musicianship.
More questions about chant? click here

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