Hi everybody,

I'm writing from Seattle, in the middle of a road trip with my sister. Right now we're in our hotel on Lake Union and the sun is shining. Not only that, but I didn't think to bring my score, so this column is going to be short!

I was thrilled at how much growth we achieved last Tuesday! How did it happen, that after I challenged you to observe every single dynamic marking, you did! You must have been able to tell the difference: the effect was ravishing.

My other challenge to you was in the vowel category, and there we still have to catch the miscreants! I have to conclude that some people have yet to speak through the text as shown in your pronunciation guide. Yes, Dvorak didn't use the entire text of the Stabat Mater, but just underline or highlight the texts we do have! Anyway, we'll keep watching out for those pesky places. I have to think that those who are mispronouncing simply can't hear themselves. Here's a suggestion: could you all be brave enough to say to your neighbors, "Would you please tell me if I'm the one singing 'ih' when it should be 'ee'?" It takes humility and courage to do that, but it would be for the greater good...it's really no different than telling someone they have spinach between their teeth!

I felt extremely happy with all of the inner movements, but have some major concerns about the first and last movements, especially the first with all its chromaticisms. We'll look closely at that movement; I think we've not spent as much time on it, so it feels uncertain. There are a few rhythmic issues in the soprano section, as well. As for the final movement, one big issue is the tuning of the last few pages. We don't want to end the whole performance on sour notes. We'll give attention to that, as well as making sure we're rock-solid on strictly keeping the time as we come off the long held chords into the a cappella hymn. It's so rich and satisfyingcan we just memorize it? (Thought so.)

I love you all, and want only the best for you in this performance. That's why I'm nagging right now: if I didn't care, I wouldn't be after you so much. Actually, I love the music even more! It's worthy of our very best.

Have a happy Easter, and see you on Tuesday.


Volunteers Needed for Tutti/Dress Rehearsals & Concert

As a self-presenting choir, we rely on members to volunteer to operate our organization. We need volunteers to help with transporting, setting up, and tearing down equipment for our tutti/dress rehearsals and concert. See what help is needed, then sign up to lend a hand

Vote for FCO as Best Live Music 

Show your love and vote for FCO every day through Friday, April 5, in this year's Best of the Willamette Valley contest. Look for FCO in the Things to Do category under Live Music.


Ticket sales have now started and each member is asked to sell at least two tickets. Read the information on your ticket envelope closely so that you understand ticket prices, and remember that mezzanine seats are reserved and require specially printed tickets. For more tickets, contact Janet Rafalovich at janraf@comcast.net or 503-371-1039 (landline). Money and unsold tickets must be returned by April 9.

Member Handbook 

The Member Handbook is now available and provides important information for this term. Learn what's expected of you at rehearsals, what you need to wear for concerts, how to get more involved with FCO, and track important dates.

Lead the Way with Board Service 

Get involved by joining FCO's board of directors. FCO is a nonprofit member organization with an annual budget close to $60,000. Board members oversee all aspects of FCO business, from grant writing and donor development to concert management and ticket sales. FCO's continued success depends on finding hard-working and passionate people to serve on the board. Next season's board members will be elected at rehearsal on April 2. If you are interested in helping to lead FCO, contact Bryan Gonzalez at bcgonzalez@juno.com

Rehearsal Resources

Check out these resources to help learn this term's music:

Rehearsal Rules

  • Regular rehearsals run 7:00–9:30pm
  • Stay home if you are sick or experiencing symptoms of COVID-19
  • Notify Bryan Gonzalez (503-851-5351) as soon as possible if you test positive for COVID-19

Member Roster & Key Contacts

You can now download the roster of this term's members. If you cannot open the file, download Adobe Acrobat Reader for free. Please use this information for choir business only such as arranging ride shares.

Solveig Holmquist




Bryan Gonzalez




Jessica Coons

Soprano Section Leader



Doris Clark

Alto Section Leader



Rebekah Wozniak-Gelzer

Tenor Section Leader



Phil Davis

Bass Section Leader



Stay Alert

FCO uses text message alerts to provide important reminders and to share last-minute information. If you haven't received alerts this term, sign up now.


FCO no longer requires vaccination against COVID-19 or the use of masks. To protect the health and safety of everyone who interacts with our organization, please stay home if you feel unwell. Any member that tests positive for COVID-19 must report their diagnosis to FCO as soon as possible and may not participate in any FCO event until determined safe to do so according to public health guidance or their healthcare provider. FCO will not disclose the identity of any member that tests positive but will notify all members of potential exposures.


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