April 26, 2009

This is an edited version of a monologue written by a playwright at the BPP circa 2004. See my original backstory for this script.

Nobody knows I have Mama’s white gloves, but I do. I was thirteen when I first saw them. Before that, I’d only seen them in the pictures.

The week after Mama’s funeral, Daddy and the boys were packing up all of Mama’s things. Daddy said it was too hard to have them in the house. And there they were, lying right there, on top of that box.

I think Mama would’ve wanted me to have them.

Sometimes I sleep with Mama’s white gloves under my pillow. Those are the nights when I have my favorite dreams.

I am looking through a keyhole, and on the other side is a glorious ballroom filled with men and women waltzing, almost as if they’re floating. They are all so well-dressed and look so stunning. 

I see Mama. She is the most beautiful one there. She dances about and the music flows through her body and drifts through the keyhole and whispers into my ears. Mama smiles.

Tomorrow, I have to wear my own white gloves. Grandmother bought them for me. I don’t want to wear them, though—I’d rather wear Mama’s. I try my gloves on and my arms suffocate. It is horrible. When I wear Mama’s gloves, I am alive.

Vahine Taihara

November 30, 2008

SSAA. Mahoi (Polynesian) song transcribed from a field recording. Has a chant-like quality. Difficult to learn but very fun to sing, especially when imitating the “yowling cat” sounds of the field recording. Short solos and one wailing descant above the chanting, rhythmically interesting 4-part chorus. See KaiaSing.com for more info on the piece.


November 22, 2008

F minor

5-part transcription/arrangement of Sarah MacLachlan’s absolutely stunning song of broken love. Takes lots of stamina and singers very in tune with each other. A wonderful challenge to sing and haunting to hear. Very chord-oriented; hardly a melody at all. Singers would need to listen to MacLachlan’s recording of this on Solace for her trills, etc.

Johnee Jingo

November 22, 2008

A minor

9-part transcription from Todd Rundgren’s immortal A Cappella. Powerful anti-war song. Most of it is very repetitious, relying on a strong solo line and building vocal accompaniment for tension and power. Solo line can be one or more voices.


November 22, 2008

D major

SATB; can be SSA. Often attempted, never performed. This gorgeous Ukrainian folksong constantly shifts from joyful major to shimmering minor. Transliterated lyrics describe a crow in a tree over a dead Cossack, and the fair maid whose love will never come again (Slavic love angst!). Kaia has tried singing this many times but no matter what configuration we try, we can’t make it sound right. Original can be found on Unbloc[k]ed collection of Eastern European music.

Go to Sleepy

November 22, 2008

B major.

3-part with soprano descant and piano accompaniment. 1938 arrangement, has that period “angel choir” sound, very lovely. Lullabye with lyrics of the “All the Pretty Little Horses” ilk.

Letyat Utki

November 22, 2008

C Major

3-part with soprano descant. I got my copy from a woman who sang with Libana. Arrangement by Ethel Raim. Traditional Russian folksong, sad, “I’m waiting for my love and where is he” sort of thing (i.e. “traditional Russian folksong”).