SEÁN MATTHEW DEIBLER
Seán Matthew Deibler was a musician of outstanding competence. As a clarinetist, baritone vocalist and conductor few could equal his abilities. Above all of the gifts possessed by a fine conductor is the knack, even at the highest level, of communicating to the musicians her/his interpretation of the music. Seán was a master communicator and could inspire in the musicians a deep love and a rich understanding of the music.
The sound of a great chorus is primarily the result of its intonation, and the key to fine intonation is ear training. To accomplish this Seán began every rehearsal with an intense ear training session using tonic solfeggio integrated with vocal exercises. The singers’ sight reading increased dramatically as well allowing more rehearsal time to be spent on shaping the music rather than on learning the notes. Although The Music Group of Philadelphia and Choral Arts Society of Philadelphia were technically amateur choruses, they both attracted singers of substantial talent, many of whom were professional musicians in their own right. These folks were ripe for the musical advancement and high-level performances for which these ensembles were noted.
Furthermore, Seán had an encyclopedic knowledge of musical literature, and it included many works that had slipped into near obscurity, not because of lack of musical quality but, rather, due to their difficulty. Choral directors under pressure to produce concerts often choose repertoire with expediency as the foremost criterion, overlooking works of exceptional beauty that are less easily mastered. By constantly nourishing the talent of his singers Seán was able to tackle very challenging and beautiful works and to shape them into stunning performances.
The Seán Deibler Collection is a group of recordings that resulted from his work with these two choruses. Each album includes works from the repertoire of each chorus selected thematically. Because their repertoires differ, Music Group being a chamber chorus (40-60 singers) and Choral Arts being a symphonic chorus (150-180 singers), the collection includes a wide variety of choral literature from all musical periods.
Please be aware that all of the recordings in the collection were made in concert. Furthermore, the tapes on which they were preserved had been in storage for decades. As a result, there are occasional extraneous noises or a rare musical error that in a studio recording would have been eliminated. Some entire tapes or portions thereof had deteriorated beyond use, and those performances were lost. Every effort has been made to clean up the recordings, and the high quality and intense excitement of each performance make these recordings an unqualified pleasure to hear and to own.