Music & The Spoken Word Pioneer Day Concert Rehearsal
I could hardly wait for Tuesday night’s first dress rehearsal. Due to some construction work going on in the Conference Center parking garage, all of the Choir members had to take a detour and enter through stage left (the men’s side). It was a little crowded, and the line seemed to be moving slowly. But before I even entered the hall I could hear the strains of Lindsey Stirling’s beautiful music soaring through the hall and I immediately recognized that she and the Orchestra were rehearsing her song “Elements.” Everyone had stopped moving and was patiently waiting because Lindsey was on the “football” (that’s what we call the upper stage where the Choir loft seating is)—and of course Lindsey wasn’t just playing her violin, she was dancing and leaping around as part of her rehearsal—so we couldn’t very well have 350 people walking into her!
Not a problem. I just stood there and let the sound wash over me with a big grin on my face. I was actually in the same room as Lindsey Stirling, and her music is even more amazing live and in person than it is in her videos! You can feel the energy radiating from her. In a few more minutes the choir was assembled in our seats and joining our voices with the Orchestra to accompany Lindsey. The song “Elements” is fun to sing because we are using our voices in an acoustic way. It’s also challenging because the rhythms need to be kept very crisp. The Choir gets to explore creating a different type of sound and use our voices in new ways, which is always exciting. I think the Choir and Orchestra were enchanted by Lindsey all night. I admit some of us (at least one) were struggling with the urge to simply stop and watch her leap and spin with her violin instead of keeping our eyes on the conductors! She brings great excitement and fun to the stage! Another piece that we will perform with Lindsey is a new arrangement combining the tunes “Scotland the Brave” (aka “Praise to the Man”) and “Simple Gifts,” co-written by Lindsey and composer Sam Cardon. This piece is beautiful and carries a tender and joyful spirit. I can’t wait to perform it for our audience!
Each year the Mormon Tabernacle Choir Pioneer Day Concert honors not only the original Mormon Pioneers who settled Utah but also the modern pioneering spirit. Lindsey Stirling is a true pioneer in every sense of the word. She has blazed a new trail with her original music and unique performing style. She has used new media to promote her talents, and she has never given up in the face of adversity and criticism. I applaud her courage and am so proud to be sharing the stage with her this week!