NOTES FOR CONDUCTORS
Highgate International Church, 272 Archway Road, Highgate, London N6 5AU. The church is almost next to a mini-Sainsbury’s. We use the Café entrance – not the main entrance up the steps. You can find detailed information on the travel and parking at the venue at: www.srp.org.uk/north-london-branch-venue/
You should aim to arrive at 2.00pm to allow time to prepare for a start time of 2.30pm . There’s a conductor’s desk and a table for music copies. The session runs from 2.30pm to 5.30 pm with a break for refreshments at 4.00pm.
It is a large room and some players do not hear well, so if you find it hard to project your voice (or just don’t want to), please let us know and we can arrange for the microphones to be switched on from the control desk.
Once you have agreed on a date, we will publicise the annual programme on the North London page of the SRP web site. About a month before the session, the secretary will ask you for a short biography and some notes about your programme (you may have a theme or some link between the pieces, but you do not need to itemise any specific music at this point). The secretary will circulate an email about your session two weeks in advance. We are happy to include publicity about your professional engagements.
We never know how many people will come or which instruments they will choose to play. It could be anything from 15 to 36, but is usually around 30. Below is a guide to the number of copies needed:
8 x descant
16 x treble
16 x tenor
4 x F bass
4 x C bass (including 1 contra)
The standard is around Grade 4 to Grade 6 for most players. You can not rely on treble players being able to play up the octave, although a few will (and enjoy doing so). The great basses will play down when required, but really appreciate having their own parts whenever possible.
Please be sure to let the secretary know in advance if your programme will include any two-choir pieces so that we can arrange the chairs in two sections. It is not easy to get everyone to move once they are seated given the amount of paraphernalia that they have around them (stand, water, other recorders, bags, etc.).
Here are a few notes if you would welcome some programming guidance. However, we do love the variety different conductors bring to the group and so we are happy to follow your lead:
- It is worth having a short warm-up piece to get things going and allow for late-comers.
- A similar piece can be useful for the final few minutes.
- We are happy to work on something substantial for a longer session before tea.
- Depending on the length and complexity, you may need five to eight pieces of music.
- We play a variety of styles and periods, but the main focus is usually madrigals and other 16th and 17th century music.
- Be clear with instructions about who is to play and where they should play from be prepared to repeat this while you get everyone’s attention.
- Think a little about the logistics of handing around the parts and whether you want them back during or after the session / in order or not.
- If you might come back to something, be clear that players must keep it on their stand.
Expenses and fees
We can just about afford to pay up to four professional recorder players each year to conduct us from branch subscription funds. We hope that others are happy to help us out in return for something from the wine-rack. This will be discussed with you by the Chairman at the time of booking.
We reimburse photocopying costs of about £10 for the session, if requested. If your copying is likely to cost much more than £10, please discuss this with the Chairman who can arrange to have the copying done himself.
If we have missed anything from this note that you would have found useful to know in advance, please let us know and we will update the page.
Further help and information
Secretary/Venue/Programme: Judith Abbs: 020 8341 2996 or 0781 350 2425 (abbsjudithstonenet (abbsjudithstonenet) )
Chairman/Conductors: Alasdair Nisbet: 07767 207 185 (anincamdenlivecouk (anincamdenlivecouk) )
Treasurer/Members/Web: Katie Stone: 020 8829 9847 or 07762 734 227 (katiestoneblueyondercouk (katiestoneblueyondercouk) )