Wednesday, December 3, 2008
I was contacted by University of Dayton's temporary Gospel Choir Director to play the bass guitar for their Winter Quarter Concert Dec. 7th. She sounded very young, but seemed competent. She indicated that she would mail the sheet music and a CD of the tunes. I got them the following day.
I had played their Spring farewell concert for the regular Director, Professor Donna Cox, just before she took her sabbatical. It was a fantastic concert and the choir was excellent, so I was happy to help with the Winter Concert.
The new director indicated that they were having two rehearsals prior to the performance. hey were Tuesday Nov. 25th and Dec 2nd at 6 PM in the Theatre and Music Building. I grabbed my bass and heading out for the first rehearsal only to find the building empty and not a soul in sight. I had worked with their pianist, Mary Carmen, on several occasions and called her to find out what the problem was. She informed me that the temporary director cancelled the rehearsal but didn't inform me. Needless to say, I was not happy. The next day I called the number that the director gave me only to find out that it was the Music Dept. Office which was closed for the Holidays. The following Tuesday I set aside the evening for rehearsal but decided not to go until I had confirmation. 6 PM came and went with no word from her. At 8:30 I did get a call from her wondering why I wasn't at the rehearsal that night. I told her that I went last week and she didn't inform me that she had cancelled. She did apologize, and said that she would keep me better informed next quarter. As this was their last rehearsal before the performance, I can only assume that they will not be using a bass for the concert.
The lesson here is to keep in constant contact with everyone involved with your performances. Had she called me prior to Nov 25th about the practice being cancelled, I would have attended last nights practice. As it was, I was not going to drive all the way to UD again without confirmation.
The three magic words for this post is:
Initiate, Communicate, and then Validate!
It is better to over contact someone about a concert than under contact them. Try to leave nothing to chance.
I hope that she will remember this in her future dealings with her accompanists.