Trying to sing Mozart’s “Laudate Dominum” with a singer’s-mask on is a challenge. Beethoven was actually easier (the “Halleluia” from the Mount of Olives) because it is fast and has lots of places to breathe. Legato + mask = real difficulties. I managed to survive, and did a little better on “Balm in Giliad.” I even got to try the solo in “Balm.” I never get a solo, even in rehearsal, so that was fun.
The mask is designed to stay out from the face, and resembles the bill of a duck-billed platypus. It has a tight fit, and is two layers of heavy muslin. I’d love to know what my O2 saturation was after two hours of wearing it, and trying to sing. I managed it, but I was exhausted, more than the music should have caused. I’d love to try singing outdoors, without the mask, but that’s not an option at the place where we meet.
So of course I went looking for recordings, found one by Dame Kiri Te Kanawa, and once again had severe voice envy. She was soooooo good in her prime, and did Mozart so well! I want to be a soprano like her when I grow up.