My first meeting with Jutta Tagger, the former editorial director of ICB is beautiful memory that I cherish. I had experience of running a national journal of choral music, but having to deal with musicians and topics from all over the world in four languages scared me not a little. I remember that Jutta, always patient, did everything to put me at ease and give me the necessary help, and I will always thank her for that. For my part, I approached the job with great humility because I think that when you are new to any position, the best thing is to have respect for those who came before you and for their work. Another memory I keep in mind was the ‘ideological battle’ between the supporters of the printed paper and the digital edition of ICB. In the end, the idea of continuing with a hybrid version prevailed, which I believe is still a winner today.
Patricia Abbott, Montréal, QC, Canada
Volunteer translator (French to English) and copy editor
I first started translating and writing for ICB back in 1988-89 (so says my CV) and contributed regularly, especially in the 90s. With an increasingly heavy workload teaching, conducting and serving as Executive Director of what is now called Choral Canada and then as Artistic Director of the CAMMAC Music Centre, I had to step back for a few years, but I am back on board now that my workload has diminished somewhat. It is a great pleasure to participate in the global choral scene in this modest way and to put my journalism and translation training and experience to work for the art form about which I am so passionate. Congratulations to ICB and IFCM on this milestone anniversary and for keeping conductors around the world informed and connected.
I have many good memories from my years as an ICB Coordinator. I especially enjoyed the connection with so many people in so many different countries. I always enjoy exchanging news with other people, so when I contacted any of my team I would also add a few lines of personal news, and they always reciprocated. It was like having pen friends all over the world. I am still in contact with some of the women I corresponded with in the U.S., England, Germany, Spain, and Italy. With regards to other interests, I am a Board Member and former Vice President of my local University of the Third Age; I do a lot of voluntary work for them. And I have twin grandchildren, aged five, to keep me busy, and a very companionable cat.
I started collaborating as a volunteer back in 2012 and I soon became the coordinator for Spanish language. This year I was replaced by talented Vania Romero and I continue to collaborate as a translator when she asks me to. When I met former ICB editor Andrea Angelini when participating in the festival he organizes in Rimini with my beloved choir Aurum (Luanco). I also loved meeting Vania Romero (actual Spanish coordinator) face-to-face when she toured in Europe with her Venezuelan choir.
I worked for ICB for some years as French Language Coordinator. I started in 2010, I remember doing the proofreading on the commuter train in the morning on my way to work. I stopped in May 2017. In fact, my grandson was born in 2015 and I looked after him while his mother was at work. Although this was a great pleasure, I must say that I have missed this brainstorming, this permanent intellectual challenge, producing large quantities of adrenalin, ever since. There is no better person than Barbara Pissane – with her personal and professional qualities – to continue this demanding work. Andrea managed the issues, and we did the details. A great team, which changed sometimes with the departure or arrival of new translators. We were all volunteers, so there was no lack of enthusiasm and fun. The atmosphere was friendly. Some of us went on to create or join translation agencies after this enriching experience. Fortunately, I had a safety net in the form of the people who did the proofreading. I had a friendly relationship with Florence Recoursé even though we only knew each other virtually. Then Jean Payon took over. We could count on him without fail. If I received a translation late, at midnight, on the day of the last deadline, all I had to do was transfer it, and the proofreading arrived in my inbox at 2 a.m. If ever in doubt or in need of advice, Jutta was always there to lend a hand, and give clarifications and explanations with her perfect knowledge of all the ICB editions. I regret a little that I was not able to take more advantage of all these exceptional events organised by the IFCM. There was so much to see. I got to experience them somewhat through the articles. It is too late now. I would like to express my thanks to the current team, who left me on the mailing list and I still receive news from the choral world, bringing back so many memories.
I was a translator and proofreader of French texts for about 5 years in the 2010s. My fondest memory is the incredible kindness and goodwill of my ICB contact, Maria [Bartha, coordinator of the French texts from 2010 to 2017], who used to send me texts. And the endless, communicative energy of my friend Isabelle! Congratulations to all the teams, past and future!
Translated by Olivia Scullion, UK