Our friend Tyler Mitchell from the Liturgy Forum and I both attended the recent sacred music colloquium in Washington, D.C. A full report of the event will follow shortly, but in the meantime, here is a list we compiled of a few random quotes that flew into the air and tickled our ears and rather dry senses of humor/humour. Since much of the quote depends on the context, I'll try to provide as much as possible in italics.
Altos trying to take control of what's rehearsed? "I'M running this rehearsal, yes?"
Sopranos flat? "There is only ONE fifth in this scale."
Rehearsed a phrase five times, and the sopranos still get it wrong? "Short-term memory loss: sign of Alzheimer's."
Stupid liturgist in your parish who hates polyphony? "According to the Liturgical Rainbow Coalition, this music makes the Mass too long. However, the Gloria to the Mass of Cremation is twice as long as the Rheinberger Gloria."
Altos flat then correcting the held note? "Whoever seeks shall find."
Sopranos singing without thinking? "Make sure the light is on in your head."
Sopranos clueless? "Eight sopranos don't realize there is a back page to the Ave Verum. Please turn to page 4 after page 3. It's the second ending."
Choir trying to sing a new vocalise during the demonstration? "How can you sing something you haven't even heard yet?"
Tenor disgruntled about that high A: "Man, that tenor line is high! Anything higher and we're gonna have to use pliers."
Oh, thou schola, pretty please? "Will you let me slow you down there?"
Don't hijack their part! "Sopranos, you're singing the tenor line. The tenors are seductive, yes? But we just can't have that in church."