Friday, February 20, 2015

Back in 2013...

On October 24, 2013, I made a statement. I am going to quote the last paragraph:
I don't want to sing at the Met. I don't care about YAPs. I don't want to sign an album contract. I want people to hear music. I want to touch people's souls. I want to bring a part of HUMAN HISTORY to PEOPLE. Because THAT'S what it's about. Singers, performers - I beg you: Go somewhere that you can share your art, no matter what level you are... It's not about making $5000 per show. It's not about flying to Milan or Paris or New York City every week. It's about sharing YOUR MUSIC with the WORLD.
I had a dilemma today. It wasn't the end of the world. It was my own lack of a contingency plan for something I had really somewhat expected, however, I wanted to assume it wouldn't happen. Regardless, I solved the issue, and it's going to be fine. But had I been holding a sharp object, someone may have gotten stabbed... Thank you Yogic Breathing Exercises for pulling me out of that one. But the moment I stepped into that practice room, and started working on the songs that I have planned to share with everyone at next month's recital, I was relieved. Because you know what? Something may have happened, and maybe it won't be perfect, and maybe I had to freak out a little to kick my own butt into gear - but this recital is about sharing the music I love with my friends and family whom I love. It's about bringing you a little piece of me. It's about opening up my heart and my story to all of you.

I had a fantastic lesson with my teacher - she loves the selections, by the way - and it was only my second lesson with her, but I know that it's going to be a good relationship. She loves art song the way I love art song. I told her I'm trying to streamline all these pieces into one cohesive, beautiful story of love, and loss, and change, and heartbreak. I need this. This has been a period of growth for me.

The more I look carefully at each and every selection I have made, the more sure I am of the piece. The love of God, in Laudate Dominum, which I have recently embraced as a part of my being, and as a musician. The forbidden love with someone you know is wrong for you in the poetry of Verlaine, the pleasure of guilt (is Lent not the perfect time for these amorous confessions?). The abandonment of Ophelia: her heartache, her sudden loss, her eventual demise – is reminiscent of my shock of an ending engagement with no forewarning. I won't leave out my hilarious American song set - finding love in the place you live, in the life you lead, and being a modern woman!

And Konstanze. Before 50 Shades of Grey, we had Die Entf├╝hrung aus dem Serail and the aria "Martern Aller Arten." Yes - Konstanze gets her own paragraph. I need her. I have fought with this character. I have had more vocal issues working on "Ach, Ich Liebte" than any other piece in my life! Not because the music was so difficult, but because I couldn't go THERE. If my singing was completely removed from my acting, what kind of artist would I be? When I worked on that piece, I truly was MADLY in love. I won't get as personal as to tell the whole story, but that person I KNEW was wrong for me. When that ended I found someone I thought was kind, compassionate, a complete change for the better - only to find that, once again, I was wrong. As soon as my engagement with Drew ended, I began working on "Martern Aller Arten." Her last line "Zuletzt befreit mich doch der Tod/at last I will be freed by death," became my liberty. The heartache is over. I have climbed that mountain and made it to the other side. I am alive, and well, and you can do what you will to me, and I still stand. Konstanze still stood. She found her beloved again in the end, but I am ready for a new beginning.

I'm excited to be preparing everything to share with you all, loved ones. I look forward to seeing you all at 4:00pm on March 15th at Church of the Advent, Christ the King, 261 Fell Street, San Francisco.

Friday, February 6, 2015

Yesterday...

was AMAZING.

I had a great lesson (after about 6 months hiatus from the traditional "voice lesson") with New Teacher, who is GOOD FRIENDS with Previous Teacher! And Previous Coach! I love it, love it, love it. I felt like I got an opera "check-up" with a clean bill of health. She and I worked on rethinking my support. I replaced some tension areas with new thoughts on breathing. I hadn't realized how tight I had been getting in my jaw until it was UN-TIGHT. It felt wonderful...



I had a really lovely audition in LA for SongFest (for which New Teacher teaches). I'm hoping and praying for acceptance (and maybe scholarship?) to the teaching track program, which would be fabulous. 


CoOperative also offered me another spot this year. I need to hold my breath for a little while, until I hear from SongFest. I think it's best if I only do one summer program, though I would love to be in musical workshops for the WHOLE summer. If only, if only... (sheesh, and Westminster has choral conducting and Kodaly workshops I would also love to attend... hmmm).

The good part is, I am still young. The bad part is, I am young, and therefore not a millionaire (yet? eh...).

On my audition trip last week, I saw THREE of my best friends, how exciting is that! And a crazy FOURTH best friend drove all the way down to LA from Sacramento to sneak off to Disneyland on Saturday. Heeheehee. But I had to wear my glasses because I LOST MY CONTACT ON SPACE MOUNTAIN!!!!

I have been offered a position directing a church choir in Half Moon Bay. I'm embarking on a VERY new journey with that one... I'm trying it. Dippin' my toes in to see what happens! I feel like I know NOTHING, and yet, I know that (oh, gosh...) 15 years of experience singing in choirs must do something. The two voice degrees shouldn't hurt, either. And it's Half Moon Bay... not the worst place to work every Sunday!




Broken Heart and Raspy Voice: The California Fires

I am so so heartbroken for all the people who have lost their homes this month in the California fires. The flames were visible from my pare...

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