Edward Willett

Archives

Choral music and me, with links to actual music!

I've sung choral music all my life. Growing up in the Church of Christ, every Sunday morning and Sunday night and Wednesday night, I was singing hymns and gospel songs, a cappella. I started as a boy soprano, sang alto for a while, switched to tenor for about a year, and then settled into the bass-baritone I am today. In high school, I sang in the choruses conducted by my father, James Lee Willett, at Western Christian College. At Harding University in Arkansas, I sang in the Harding A Cappella Chorus, directed by Dr. Kenneth Davis Jr., and also in the rather boringly named Men's Ensemble. Since then, I've sung with the Regina Philharmonic Chorus, the University of Regina Chamber Singers, ...

Posted by Edward Willett at 9:40, May 2nd, 2017 under Blog, Music | Comment now »

Canadian Chamber Choir seeks applicants for conducting fellowship for 2013 project in B.C.

The Canadian Chamber Choir, with which I sometimes sing and on whose board of directors I served for a few years, is once again seeking applicants for its Conducting Fellow Program. If you're a budding conductor, this would be invaluable...so read the press release below and consider applying! *** For Immediate Release CANADIAN CHAMBER CHOIR ANNOUNCES FELLOWSHIP FOR CONDUCTORS “A national treasure" -- Montreal Gazette "Beyond brilliant . . . Don't miss this choir" -- Hamilton Spectator The acclaimed national ensemble, the Canadian Chamber Choir, is excited to announce a unique opportunity for conductors: the CCC seeks applicants for its Conducting Fellow Program in conjunction with its October 2013 British Columbia tour. This is an ...

Posted by Edward Willett at 20:33, May 19th, 2013 under Blog, Music | Comment now »

Help the Canadian Chamber Choir make its first professional recording

As I've mentioned before, I'm on the Board, and among the pool of singers, for the Canadian Chamber Choir, a fabulous national choir made up of auditioned singers from across the country. I've sung on two projects, one in Ontario and last fall one right here in Saskatchewan, and I can't praise the choir and its director, Dr. Julia Davids, highly enough. If you love choral music, you would love to hear this choir sing.Except, of course, you have to be somewhere where they're touring to do so.But that will change in the near future. The Canadian Chamber Choir is currently raising funds to make its first professional recording this summer. (I won't be one of ...

Posted by Edward Willett at 15:24, March 6th, 2009 under Blog | Comment now »

The science of what I’m doing right now: music

I'm currently in the middle of a Saskatchewan tour with the Canadian Chamber Choir. In fact, we have a joint concert with Juventus in Regina on Friday at 7:30 p.m. at Westminster United Church.Because my brain is currently stuffed full of music, it's hard for me to come up with a scintillating new science column. So instead, here's a modified version of one I wrote 17 years ago.Its topic? Music; what else?Not that music is easy to talk about scientifically, because it's a subjective experience. Aristotle saw no reason to take it seriously: "It is not easy to determine the nature of music or why anyone should have a knowledge of it."...

Posted by Edward Willett at 15:30, October 24th, 2008 under Blog, Science Columns | 1 Comment »

Canadian Chamber Choir tour is getting close!

From October 18 to 25, I probably won't be blogging much, if at all, because I'll be touring Saskatchewan with the Canadian Chamber Choir.Here's the information about the tour from the official press release. If you're in the neighborhood of one of our concerts, please come out! It's a great group. We sing really purty-like.***The acclaimed Canadian Chamber Choir/Choeur de Chambre du Canada makes a long-anticipated return to Saskatchewan this month, bringing concerts and educational workshops to the west, centre and south of the province. The CCC is a unique group uniting professional singers from across the country which has garnered critical rave reviews and won fans across the country with its “extraordinary ...

Posted by Edward Willett at 15:50, October 9th, 2008 under Blog | Comment now »

One thing ends, new things begin

Why, yes, I haven't been posting much beyond my columns: thanks for noticing!It seems like since I got back from the Canadian Chamber Choir tour I've been either too busy or too tired to do much beyond the occasional blog post. But perhaps that can change now that I have finished one thing and am moving on to another (well, another three, actually).The "one thing" I have finished is my book for Enslow Publishers called Disease Detectives, part of their new Extreme Science series. I sent in the manuscript today. And, yes, I "repurposed" one of the chapters from it for this week's science column on what it's like to work in a Level ...

Posted by Edward Willett at 4:17, November 15th, 2007 under Blog | 6 Comments »

Beautiful singing starts with science

Download the audio version.Get my science column weekly as a podcast.As I mentioned last column, I spent last week singing with the Canadian Chamber Choir in southern Ontario. In addition to concerts, we also took part in several workshops with musicians ranging in age from eight to 80.Our director, Dr. Julia Davids, who teaches and conducts choirs at Loyola University in Chicago, would usually lead workshop participants through the same vocal warm up she used with the choir. During that time, one question she liked to ask was “What’s the equation for singing?” In other words, if x + y = “singing,” what are x and y? The answer: “breath” and “space.”...

Posted by Edward Willett at 18:57, October 22nd, 2007 under Blog, Science Columns | Comment now »

Canadian Chamber Choir itinerary

Live in the Hamilton area and anxious to see a real-live science-fiction writer sing in a top-notch chamber choir (and who wouldn't be)?Here's the itinerary (thus far) for the Canadian Chamber Choir tour I'll be part of in October:Tuesday, October 16Choral Collaboration Workshop hosted by Appleby CollegeWorkshop with Oakville Children's ChoirWednesday, October 17, 7:30 PMConcert at Christ's Church Cathedral252 James Street North, HamiltonAdults $15.00 Students/Seniors $12.00.Advance tickets can be purchased from the church office. Contact for tickets & information is Alison Meredith at 905-527-1316, ext. 240.Thursday, October 18Workshop with University of Western Ontario conducting studentsFriday, October 19, 12:30 PM"Fridays 12:30" Concert ...

Posted by Edward Willett at 15:55, September 7th, 2007 under Blog | Comment now »

Musical months ahead for me

I mentioned a while back that I'll be part of the cast of Persephone Theatre's Christmas production of Beauty and the Beast in Saskatoon. I thought I was playing Monseiur Dark, but I received my contract today and I'm actually being signed on to play Maurice, Belle's father. I'm pleased, to say the least, although of course I'm really much much too young to play the father of a grown...oh, who am I fooling.I don't remember if I've mentioned my other musical adventure for fall. In October, I'll be joining the Canadian Chamber Choir for their project in Vineland, Ontario, with a number of workshops and concerts planned for the area. I've received the music, ...

Posted by Edward Willett at 22:11, September 4th, 2007 under Blog | Comment now »