28 February, 2007

zerbinetta staging awesome-ity/ness.

Not much else to say after a day of 9am-7pm with one hour for lunch and staging and coaching the rest of the day.

NOW- to Zerbinetta staging!!!! Note to some- what follows may be not at all interesting to anyone except me because it's an exercise in remembering my blocking while also describing the feeling of the first staging of the "orgasm" cadenzas in the aria.
Ok, Ok, I guess that it MAY be interesting!! (scroll down almost to the end for that info)

We finally got through the first quintet today. It's going to be really cute. A mix of commedia, our own characters, and me flirting a lot--or course!

Grossmachtige- bow to A, this first line is in "her" elevated style. Remeber that I'm always expecting to get an actual response from her after I sing every phrase- the aria doesn't go on in my mind. I WANT her to turn around and just agree with me so we can go on with the opera.

Jedoch, sind wir nicht frauen unter uns- A little more cutting and spiteful. Why hasn't she answered me or looked at me? Fine, I can play her game too- let me tempt her with the description of both of our womanly wiles.

Ein unbegreiflich---DON"T WALK AWAY FROM ME---Ein unbegreiflich herz!

--she walked away. Rude. Like a statue she stands there on her tomb.
Swoop around her SR (stage right) indicating the "fels" and "wellen" that she'd rather have the company of.

Prinzessin horen Sie mich an--- Right behind her.
Almost touch her shoulder out of pity. No, she doesn't have my respect...yet.

Verlassen- Climb up beside her. Describe those idiot men.
Ich, ich selber---the first inward realization that, wait...I actually feel like you do too.

Eine kurze nacht- in my own world, crouched on bench beside Ariadne, remembering the passion but also the hurt.

Verwandtlungen?- will you respond NOW? No. Ok, I'll go on. And be HONEST about it:
Noch glaub.
Noch bin ich war- XR, telling the real truth. Oh, no--self depricate- und doch ist es gelogen.
In between bearing my soul and not wanting to admit that I'm in the same position she is.

Betrug ich in endlich- She's goingaway! But--betrug ich ihn endlich und LIEB in noch recht!See what I said there? You are STILL leaving?
Ok, I'm a bit dejected now.
Noch glaub- to myself. My truth.

How do I deal? My commedia music INTO: so war:
See my purse at the bench- it has all of my tokens of love inside!
Pagliazzo- a locket, Mezzetin- a red rose, caviccio- a dirty letter, burratin- a box with ring inside- pasquarielo- perfume- and sometimes TWO- who wrote me THIS dirty little note.

DOCH niemals launen- But NEVER a caprice..always with motions...feelings... This wasn't just fleeting love- these things all mean something.

From letter to rose with ribbon-(staunen)
Das ein herz (to the box)
sich selber (CLOSE box) nicht versteht
Gar (to the locket)
nicht versteht- to the perfume.
and finally (ah) to the folded letter---
(this is the part where the director specifically wants me to use Dessay's opening of the letter scene inthe opera paris interpretation..ok, I'm down with it if it makes sense).

But I put my own twist on it at the end. Last three trills- touch objects, last arpeggio, gather them all in my arms.

Als ein Gott (1) Put things back in my purse. Be truthful about how they came forth.
Als ein Gott (2) Glass screen in my b/f now-- roll it DR
(it's getting good, really)
Als ein Gott (3) on the glass screen- pretending he's behind me. Hands run up and down him/it.
This is the slow-ish part where I get to take some time.
Hingegeben--- Jump off b/f, get ready for the excitement that's about to come.
I'm made weak in the knees (first Ah)
Find a place to sit (2nd ah)
Here it comes- third and HELD ah- lying down slowly backwards onthe bench...etc. etc. etc.

(yes I just yadda yadda yadda's sex)

Oh, a note to the reader IF you're still reading---
The FIRST time I did this I was on my back first and then...yea...I turned over and looked over my shoulder...
NOT exactly the picture of clean sex that the opera donors of age 65 and up may be "up" for...so that was nixed.
oh well--maybe for a younger crowd some day.

SO we cleaned it up and now I'm on my back for the held Ah's--kind of arching the back...well, you know just being real about it- and then for the final
Kamm der neue Gott gegangen I'm "recovering"- hands drop to the floor, head turns to the audience (it was previously up in that whole arched back/head back position)...

It's so cool. And hottt!
I loved staging it.
It felt really right and not inappropriate and necessary for the music. I mean, could Strauss have been any clearer about what he wanted? If this was just "excitement" at the ex-boyfriends I could play it that way too- but I'm glad that I get the chance to explore this side of it in my first ever staging and performance of it because that it what I would connect it most strongly to.

The best part is when Harlequin "walks in" on me toward the end and the recit that follows.
So verschieden geschaffen!!! Wonderful exhale.

night night.
sweeeet dreams!

26 February, 2007


It's that time of year- all of the YAPlication deadlines have passed, and now I move onto more fun perusals of websites for competitions.
Foundations, competitions, big or small--it's always a large crapshoot about whether you should apply, whether you should send them the app. fee, decide to travel there, etc.

A singer I met this summer has made absolutely an art out of it- deciding which ones to do, what dates (because they SO often are the last 2 weeks of May, and all over the US), did they pick a lyric sop. winner last year? If so, she's not going. If they picked a guy, she'll think about paying for travel out there, but only if the first through third prizes are over 1,000 dollars.
It's so exact- and it has paid off for her, definitely.

I'm approaching it in a bit more fun way for me.
Do I want to go visit my friends in Chicago when this competition is there? Sure- why not? An excuse to maybe get into the qualifying round of a large intl. competition, plus get to hang out in their great apt. and revisit old times.

Besides the 3 I've already sung in this year,
I'm set for 2 more (in April...one local, one NY), and have applications in the completion stages for three more--but here is where I run into the problems with the month of May.

May 15th- our official last day at current-yap. I'll start the drive back cross-country then.
May that week: competition number one that I'm already signed up for and have their finals on the 19th IF I make it.
May 22/23: competition number two finals IF I make it.
May 24: want to be flying across the ocean to my "homeland".
May 25-Jun.8th- possibly hopefully auditioning for the head of "homeland" opera.
ALSO May25-Jun.8th- HOPING that I can convince the nice people at the Belvedere competition that they should add an audition location for preliminaries IN my homeland-killing 2 birds with..you get it.

After Jun.8th- wait to see if I get into the finals of either Placido's huge competition or the Belvedere (if they give me my requested city audition)...and ALSO begin my new summer/life SOMEWHERE in Germany!!!

You can see how lugging all 6-8 of my opera scores for competitions (it's a rule), plus two gowns and yes, a suitcase filled with 2 months of summer/homeland clothes and weird/European summer clothes may prove a bit difficult in this situation.

Well, at least I'm having fun sorting it out now. Later I'll just have to show up and sing pretty!

23 February, 2007

in the market

for some new arias.

There are a few competitions coming up that I'd like to apply for that have specific repertoire requirements- whether it be by time period or just whichever arias they list that are acceptable.
And I'm noticing that while a lot of the rep. that I sing is on there, it's not the repertoire that I would usually use for competitions.

Who wins a competition with Saper Vorreste? I don't know. But even though I sing it well, love it and even have it as an upcoming role!!!! (newsflash newsflash)...I don't think I'd put it on my list for these hugely famous international competitions.

What I WANT to sing is Lakme. It's not on the list.
Even the DOLL song is not on one of the lists.

So- for my early piece I think I'm learning Tornami.
I haven't done this simply because for a few years it was "the" coloratura baroque piece to sing. Maybe now I'll join the club.

Then I'm in between Queen (uber impressive) and Blondchen (uber cute) for the Mozarts,
in between O luce and Norina (both equally annoying to panels but equally awesomely fun for me),

and then both DO allow Zerbinetta (from different starting points---one is the whole thing, one is just So war through Als ein gott).

In my coaching today I decided to run through arias and see what kind of recording I could get and if it could be used for anything preliminary/screening-wise in the future.

Now these are all one-take, low-pressure situations in a decently live (but not too much reverb) room with a great pianist...
I got a great DurchZ, Queen, Oscar, a semi-good O luce- it was the best recit I've ever done but then I was feeling the burn as my hour of singing came to a close and that high G was not my favorite, and a preeeetttyyy good Zerbie from So war to the end, AND a good Chacun (which I haven't re-recorded since my heyday of singing it for everything two years ago).


Back to the aria lists.
Looking at them always makes me want to pick up old music, pick new music, and learn more and more.
Things I haven't touched in at least a year or two that I'd love to pick up again:
Prendi, Fire Aria, Oscar(2), Juliette's Waltz, come per me-sovra il sen...and all the -ina/ettas that I haven't had the chance to practice or sing since I'm the resident "high coloratura" here and there is a soubrette/lyric who does all of the other roles.

New things:
Le coq d'or, crazy high French rep in general!, Mitridate, Mireille, ...so much more that I love, and wish was performed more often in the US.

Oh, and what am I doing on this Friday night?
Well, I've been at home puttering about since about 5pm, listening to the recordings I just did, googling (as usual)...singers, competitions, opera seasons...
updating my new and almost publishable website(!), and mostly hoping that this huge storm that is supposed to dump a foot of snow on us is all a big lie.

more zerbie

We had an hour coaching on the quintets before and after the aria today which went very well.

As I just posted on COT regarding the state of conservatory training in the US, I have to say that even though I'm well past that level of schooling, current-Yap is putting together a similar performance that disappoints me personally and musically.

We have to get it together by next Friday. We have had so far ONE day of staging, ONE full run-through of the scenes, and ONE coaching on it.

In the next four days we will have about an hour on music per day and an hour and a half to two hours of staging per day. Yes, it will be thrown up there, and it will be more high quality than any school production with bad languges, bad staging, and ill-prepared singers...we are after all YAP members who can get their crap together, have this opera learned cold and pull it off---but my artistic side will not be satisfied by this hurried manner of throwing something out there and not even getting to the stage of over-preparedness for the performance. A feeling which usually I really like to have when going into a performance.

So I'll be nervous not because it's a performance...but because it's a performance of something that I haven't had time to prove to myself that I can sing blindfolded, walking a tightrope, chewing gum, and doing my 2006 taxes at the same time.

22 February, 2007

staging part uno AND business stuff.

Ok, continuing on with Zerbie.
Today we began staging the first quintet where we try to convince Ariadne (both in and out of Commedia characters) that she shouldn't be sad.

Five pages and an hour and a half later, we have some awesome funny shtick and we're practically hyperventilating.

I knew there was a reason I practiced doing the Aria on my back, hanging from things, and with gymnastics involved!!

A lot of the "table work" of course got immediately thrown out the window as we were all coming up with "moves" to outdo each other onstage and still make it funny and make sense...but it's all inthe background. And that is what I think works best about things like this. You have your character and your intention so deeply committed and rooted in what you want to do, that you then have the freedom to play around with staging and none of that work falls apart or gets tossed aside.

This will be fun---now if we only had another whole week instead of 3 days to put the next 50 pages together.


In music-business news, I received yet another "interesting" comment from someone of importance who may be a help to my career strides...who said that some feedback from a certain audition was- amazing high notes, so organic, we never worry when you go high and you can commit so much more to what you're doing because you're never worried about it either...BUT.
Ah yes, the but.
the but was that someone on the panel felt that my middle voice had a slight flutter- This is the 2nd time this month I've gotten this feedback and it has prompted me to go back through ALL of my recordings- operas, lessons, piano arias, concerts..and seek out said flutter.
It's never never there. Not in performances, not in lessons. I sent mp3s to my current coach here, my teacher from undergrad, and my voice teacher from home.
They have never heard it, nor do they hear it in my arias and recordings.

So what IS it, if it is noticeable? Just my voice? Naturally? Nerves? Even though I SAY I'm not nervous and I don't FEEL nervous, are nerves somehow manifesting themselves through a flutter in my middle voice? And only in auditions? And not peformances???
I've posted about this before ...how totally calm in my head I can be and then the body does something to mess you up---like a manifestation of nerves that you can't even control because you DON"T think you're nervous!!

So, said person requested my recorded materials to continue to process my candidacy for possible representation by them...at some point in life- not now I think.

And said person said that other than that small comment which could be chalked up to either flying and singing on the same day, my sickness for the past 3 weeks, OR simply my insane subconscious foiling my plans to be the best coloratura soprano EVER....said person really likes my voice and thinks I can succeed.


20 February, 2007

owww...my most of me. and Zerbie breakdown.

Back in-state, and after the flight today and having to go immediately to 4 hours of rehearsals, when I got home at 5 I thought I'd take a little nap.
Fast forward- it's 10:35 and I just woke up. I was out cold.

Oddly enough my coaching today on Act III went REALLY well vocally! Hmm..should I not warm up, be overtired, and just "do it" and see what happens more often?

We are talking about process this week and next, regarding our scenes (that have to be staged and memorized and ready to go).

I never knew just a table read to reveal so much.

For example, we were discussing the Commedia characters in the quartet of Ariadne today- what we want, who we are, what's in the way of getting it, why we change our minds halfway through.

Then we get to the aria. Now, this is something I've always enjoyed for the "academic" challenge of singing it like Strauss meant it to be sung, and also of course for the "character".
But today I pulled out SO SO SO much more- from personal life and just making decisions about this character- that I know I'll never sing it the same way again.

So, my summary of what happened while breaking down the first section of the aria:
Grossmachtige prinzessin- I have to address you now in YOUR lofty operatic ways, because you will not stoop to be convinced by our troupe of actors and the "common man's music".
Objective: Get Ariadne to look up from her sulking about one man and one love.
Obstacle- she's not responsive.
Means: Describe my own past and how, though I don't go looking for multiple relationships at the same time, when they come my way they are really great, and- how can I blame myself for the advances of men and my weakness for not saying no?

Siding with her that men are at fault for our affairs of the heart. Not working.

Eine kurze nacht: Describing these affairs and how exciting they are- trying to get a rise out of Ariadne for her to agree that my "common" view of of love--ie, my worldview, can be fun and exciting.
Cadenza on verwandtlungen- high to low- So, in my opinion it's the courting process. First the guy comes up to you, gives you some flowers, give you some chocolates..and in return gets to have a "hold" on me, lower and lower... not yet the orgasm though...save that for later cadenzas.

Noch glaub: Ok, shoot- my descriptions didn't work. I'm trying to have some girl talk with her and get her to see that waiting for this one true love isn't everything in the world.
But wait- what if she IS right? Let me describe what happens to me. Noch glaub ich dem einen ganz mich gehoren...

Here I am singing Ariadne's music. This is the lofty high stuff that the Composer thinks should be "real opera". I'm doing it because this is my truth and beginning of my transformation- which is the realization that Ariadne COULD be right in some ways.

My worldview has shaped by that which I have encountered. It never occured to me to hold out for one man. I take things as they come at me, and I end up hurt, but there is also pleasure involved.

Ich halte mich treu, und bin shon schlecht: I used to do this as a joke, but actually- yes, I AM true, and then those naughty men make me naughty.
It feels good. Should I want to feel anything else? Am I missing something by not waiting for one man?

Betrug ich ihn endlich und lieb in noch recht: I'm using your music here, Ariadne. But being the most honest about what I feel in these relationships. I give myself over to the moment. I'm transformed by their "love". This is what love is for me.
(Is there another way in my worldview?)

Well, that's as far as we got today. But the so war section and the als ein gott section will surely be just as interesting to delve into.

I think I discovered a sense of self-awareness through this table read that I didn't give Zerbie before. I thought she was a fun-loving gal just trying to make someone feel better about herself and tell her (Ariadne) that life isn't just about one guy.

But I have to be transformed as well, and that means questioning MY worldview as opposed to hers.
IS the love that I've experienced enough for me? Am I not just a tad bit bitter about having all of these physical relationships but not one love to really show for it?
How do I deal with that dichotomy when I'm trying to convince her not to wait for the god/man that she is holding out for?

And then there was the whole analogy that you could make to "saving yourself" for one man- emotionally, physically, etc.
HAVE I thought about that before? Was I WEAK to submit? Or did I actually WANT the advances towards me?
Is there some aspect of guilt or conscience that I feel? And is it guilt of the physical act? Or guilt that if in the future I DO find that ONE man, that I won't be "pure" like Ariadne is for him?

So many questions! It's so great. Seems like a ramble here, but I'll be re-reading this to remember my ideas I'm sure.

19 February, 2007


NOT that I'll be doing this all night, but there is a 24 hour marathon of Law and Order on TNT.

I'm in another state right now, but tomorrow I'll be back "home", and well on my way (by 1pm) to rehearsing for the upcoming Ariadne.

Today: Sang really well. Made an executive decision not to start with what I was going to start with...

You know, sometimes you have the luck of seeing the list of singers that day, knowing that two of them sing the exact same repertoire you do (really really well!) except for ONE note (mine being one higher), and figuring that you have a better chance of getting called back if you sing something like Queen rather than competing on the cute/coloratura front.

And that's precisely what happened today.

Queen is no stretch for me on any day. It's just a "people's choice" kind of aria for me. Some like it in a silvery clean sound. Some want that warm honkin' thing, and some want a steely cold sound.

So that's what I sang--followed by ---good ole 2nd verse of doll (always...always..and thank goodness I love it so!)

Back to the music.

18 February, 2007

may be deleted

Ok, I'm going to be really cautious in what I'm about to write.
This will not be a rant.
This is not a "sore loser" kind of statement.

I will just say that today I, and some of my colleagues and bosses, heard a range of singing that is best described as ranging from brilliant to questionable, and it just so happened that more than a few questionable performances got rewarded by this particular region with encouragement, "best voice type" prizes, and even 1st through Nth place of the competition.

My personal performance: The best recording I've ever gotten of Lakme- first cadenza really shone, and spot-on coloratura, and a pretty darn good Durch Zartlichkeit as well- although I've sung that one better in auditions.

I can't really talk about other performances, lest it be too easy to figure out who I am, where I sang, who else sang, etc.

All I can say is that yet again it is proven to me that this business is so much about "who you know".

ie- if a judge just happens to be your coach/director, or if another judge has accompanied you at your school, or if another judge is YOUR previous teacher---are these not conflicts of interest and shouldn't they be addressed? We all know where we went to school- we're all about the same age give or take 5-7 years and it's not that tough to figure out that when one of the judges walks up to a winner afterwards with big hugs and congrats and see you in class---that doesn't make all the unknown singers feel good. When a judge is giving comments and knows that you're sick because he heard you last week in NYC and hopes you get better soon---again, not helpful to those people who the judge HASN"T heard- well or sick. EVEN though I absolutely believe that the judges can be completely fair, it's inherently not fair to judge someone who you have heard before and whose potential and current work you are familiar with against someone who you're hearing for 10 minutes for the first time.

And finally, regarding "encouragement".
What are the criteria for encouragement?
Because today they "encouraged":
consistent pitch problems in a whole cabaletta of a piece-entire phrases and pages sung sharp, inappropriate repertoire choices (dramatic soprano followed by soubrette aria), uneven tone and what seemed to be "2" distinct unconnected voices (chest and middle), and non-acting so you don't sacrifice tone.

Now, as far as the winners who are moving on to NYC:
A very talented singer who I am proud to share the stage with, and a very talented lady who I had the pleasure of hearing for the first time today.

Good luck to them.

Oh yes, let's not forget my comments.
They were all over the page today and absolutely at odds, which makes it hard to take any of them to coaches or work on regarding my future performances or auditions.

French: Great, couldn't understand it.
Acting: Amazing, so involved, not enough, too much.
Voice: Great high notes, accurate, not great high note, connect your middle voice to your high note, love your silvery high notes.

It was a long day, followed by yet another performance. I'll be so glad when I'm flying back here on Tuesday morning after the last competition I'll have for about a month.

16 February, 2007

oh, yea, and---

The Met regionals are tomorrow.

Have I even had time to THINK about this? Coach it since before the districts?

Ha.. Ha..


But I'll get out my pretty purple dress anyway and do my best.

Have to clean my room, do my laundry, and have food that is not Chinese takout in my fridge before my parents (oh, yes have I mentioned that?) arrive tonight. They wanted to come see the world premiere and happened to pick the weekend I'll be singing in the competition.

15 February, 2007

under pressure

The past week and a half has been really pressure-filled for me- with things that mostly I can't control:
Will the plane arrive on time? Will the car make it to the airport on time? Will I find a parking space before my call to the theater in 5 minutes? Will my audition go well (well, I can control that- but not so much evidently, after a flight on the same day).

We have been assigned to put together (on top of the world premiere and the next opera where I'm singing one of the leads) a scenes program, where I'll be singing all of Zerbie in the "Opera" act of Ariadne.

What a musical assignment like this means to me:
Awesome! Strauss. Love it. Learned it. Now to take it in to a Strauss expert and pianist to really get it under my skin before staging begins.

Where it is right now: Awesome! Strauss. Love it. Learned it.

Yes, I can always sing my part when the crazy piano and other ensemble members aren't around, but it takes some time to gel things like this together, and with what has been going on at the opera and current-program and benefit concerts, valentine's day donor concerts, auditions an hour before curtain for VIPs to the opera, leaving town, coming back to town, and coachings on everything EXCEPT this scene, all of the members of the scene feel extreeeemely behind at this point. And when are the performances?
Ah, yes- upcoming. 15 days.

And how many days to actual rehearsal time to we have until then? 6. Why?
Monday- dark day. Tues/Wed/Thurs- yes. Friday- director of scenes is out of town. Next monday- dark day. Tues/Wed/Thurs- yes. Friday- the show.

Ok. 6 days. Now then. How much scheduling time within those 6 days will we have to get musical rehearsals to put both ensembles and the aria together? And how many hours will we have for just staging? Oh yea, I'm also in ANOTHER scene that needs just as much time for both!

So you can see why maaaybe..just maaaybe- all of us would be jumpy about trying to get rehearsals for this and the performance on its feet.

I'm still loking at the schedule for other things too- I've marked in all of these auditions that I'd like to do---but I can't even begin to finish the applications or mark off where and when I want to audition.

All of them involve one day turnaround flights to NY and Chicago for different things.
I won't be released for most of them except one, and some are in different cities on the same day. I know I'm going to have to sit down SOON (ie, before these deadlines of probably sometime around this weekend!) and really figure out what I can miss and what I can't.

My official days off for the next two months are:
2/26 and 3/5.
The short of it:
school-from-last-year-that-wanted-me wants to hear me the week of the 26th. They have offered the 28th as a possible alternative to me not being able to make their live auditions.
Do I tell them I have the 26th available- fly in sunday, sing monday morning, and fly back here monday night? For an added 500 bucks to a place that will PROBABLY take me, but that I don't want to go to...and may not accept that I've been offered certain-role to sing HERE next year that conflicts with their school year?

Or save the money? And increase the heartache when I don't have the option anymore next year?

And on the 5th:
Other-school (ok, academy) that I'm interested in applying for- live auditions in city-i'd-love-to-live-in (a short flight either way..can be done same day)
OR do I go ahead with my original plan to try to audition for 2nd-most-well-known-house-of-opera in NYC? (and also spend 500 bucks getting there, back and staying over again)?

I just need to breathe. I can handle pressure when it's my own and I can be on task and get things done. But when so many things hang in the balance and I have no say- that's when I get tense, can't sleep, and feel like I have no control over my life and the situation.

It's not really the music. I can put that together and memorize it and it will be fine. Better than fine. It's everything else that's going on and the vortex into which all of my breath is spiraling.


13 February, 2007

no audition

Due to the severe blizzard conditions in certain-city-I'd-love-to-live-in, they are not able to come hear us today, and may not even make the show tonight...so the audition is cancelled. Boo.

So is Thursday's audition for another agent--- Boo.

But I will find out in the next few days the "feedback" from the head of the big auditions that I just did in NY. Yay.

And now back to redesigning my website.
And by redesigning, I mean emailing the guy who is designing it what I like and don't like and want to change. I tried to do it myself but I'm really just too slow at html and havne't learned dreamweaver... so- if I'm getting my name dot com and free hosting with no ads and a great design, it's worth the money for me.

technology and singing

It's scary that I can be online all day and be organizing and paying for my life at the same time.
Bills, Paypal for things I don't need, booking flights to NYC, designing a new website...all of these things are one by one being "submitted" through paypal and my credit card and do I realize it? Well, not until I get the statement of course.

Thank GOODNESS that for now I do know that I have enough money to spend on these things..which in SOME respects I do need (ie, new awesome website, flights to NYC for auditions).

Other things I did online: write thank you emails to the people that have been hearing me for the past few days! I know, the debate between handwritten and email is always there. My opinion: write a thank you email, asking for feedback. IF they write a feedback email, THANK THEM for EVERYTHING with a handwritten note.

Today. Met with an agent over lunch who has been very helpful in these past few weeks of insanity. Are we doing the "dance"? I don't really know. I'm not looking for a "courtship". It's weird. I was asked who else I was singing for, what my plans were...without really an offer or promise for anything, except a clear approval of the direction I was heading.

What would an agent mean to me: Well, THIS season I'm sure pretty much nothing. All materials have been sent already, people have been cast. Now, in NOVEMBER an agent would mean the world to me. It would mean that I'd get to livein NYC for 2 months, and hopefully audition zillions of times as a "first-timer" on a roster, and set up jobs for 2009 and beyond.

I THINK that I can try to do this on my own for next year--well, I mean, I have one thing. It's a good thing. I CAN go back to previous-yap as a mainstage artist (if I want) but in many ways that would be step down on the resume...as much as I'd love to go and premiere a new role that I'll use in my repertoire again.

So what else can I do for myself on my own? Well, hopefully get feedback from the auditions I did this weekend, MAYBE get a lucky break with one of the small companies whose directors I konow (although one is completely cast as I've just received an email)...and just wait and see if anything happens in Germany. Maybe do the Berlin NYIOPS and see what happens there as well.

The waiting game. Even managed singers have to do it.

Tomorrow: BIG audition for BIG important YAP in a city I'd LOVE LOVE LOVE to move to. (GP this means you if you're reading).

Thursday: possible auditions for a few more agents if they are in town for their artists.

Big days...long waits...hope things turn out well.

11 February, 2007

yes, I just got out of bed

It's almost 5pm.
I did wake up early (ish), but I have not been able to get out of bed all day from sheer exhaustion.

That's a good thing I think. Maybe by tomorrow's beginning of crazy weekly schedule I'll feel rested enough and not just riding on the tail end of this nasty bug I've had for 2 weeks.

Opening night. So much energy. Really great time. I think this opera will catch on.

Pre-opening night audition- Sang Durch and O luce. I think I did really well but the panel was sucking the air out of the room, frankly. When they were debating about the 2nd piece Lakme crossed the lips of two, but then the other 2 wanted O luce. Too bad, because I really haven't been feeling O luce.
Reason they picked it: So they could hear me do the recit well.
What I did well: The aria, not really the recit. The recit for me is NOT the important part of this aria. Some people make it so much about the bella voce italianate drawn out thing. But it's NOT lucia, it's O LuCE! So get over it. I can sing the recit. how I feel it- like a teenage girl freaked out about her bf not showing up for their date after she snuck out of the house.

Aaaanyway, I sang the high G at the end, and apparently the comment to the next singer who walked in the door was something like "is she bleeding"...

I know I sang and acted it well, but I think o luce is one of those pieces...that people are "testing" you on something, and if they don't get it, they may not be satisfied.

I did act the shit out of everything though.

What is it with un-smiley panels lately? I mean, why are you THERE? If you didn't want to hear us, then why agree to come hear us?
Even if this isn't the most enjoyable performance of your life, would it kill you to smile a bit or to at least follow what we're doing in the room without playing with your blackberry?
Crazy. Annoying. Can't control it.

NONE of these people are going to hire us all on the spot. It's just not going to happen. So in the meantime, we get that you're doing us a huge favor by listening to us. Now howbout not look so unhappy about it?

10 February, 2007

audition,show,audition, show...etc

Wireless works, I'm back in current-yap-state, and over the past 24 hours I have gotten very little sleep, flown very many hours, warmed up outside, in a hotel room with the blowdryer on to muffle the sound, and into a pillow.

The update:
Thursday's singing for formerly-important-person who ran a very-important-YAP and also the director of equal-footing-YAP to where I am now. I sang durch and they asked for 2nd verse of doll (after being a bit over the top about how much they didn't want to hear glitter. I get it people. If you hate the aria don't choose it- that's why I give you six on the list. sheesh!). So. I was tired and not well warmed up and my throat was still hurting from all of that amazing coughing I've been doing for 2 weeks.
BUT. I sang "well". Nothing was out of pitch. They weren't looking at me so I didn't have to "act" much (love that- when the blackberry is more important than you are)...

Whatever. These people are in no position to hire me anytime soon or even ever.

I slept for an hour, woke up at 4am, got on a plane to NYC, landed, slept a bit in the hotel, showered, warmed up and then sang for the NYIOPs. I know, I know...there is so much bashing on nfcs of these things. The money, the lack of higher level houses, whatever...
It was my first time singing for them, and they're casting an Abduction and an Ariadne. And those are the two pieces of mine that I ended up singing!!!!

I paid, I was unmanaged, I sang really well, I DON"T absolutely HATE DiCapo. If anything, it's just dry in there. Acoustics never really bug me.

I got good feedback from agent/friend 1 and 2 who were there to a. hear me for the first time after kinda kinda talking, and b. hear me again with an almost always open offer for representation if I wanted to get started that way.

So. Good things. I will be in touch with the houses, write thank you notes (probably emails) and not expect to hear anything..but still- I'm really glad I went.

Also- got a haircut in NY (yay layers), and thinking about cutting it all that short (to the shortest layer) after the show here (maybe next time I'm in NY- in a week and a half).

Also- got to see my special someone. He took a day off to meet me in NY, and is at the moment flying to California for a vascular cell biology retreat...or something like that for researchers---basically they get to look at each others' posters and also play beach volleyball all week.

(Oh yes, it's not over yet)
It's 1:43 right now. Rest until 2:30. Warm up.
3:50- leave for the theater with my audition clothes.
5- audition!!! For 2 more agents and one OC (opera company)
7:30- CURTAIN for opening night.

Crazy. Tired.
This life rocks.

07 February, 2007

scratch that

Make that one day to get better.
VIPs in town for the show this weekend have decided that tomorrow would be a good day to begin to hear the resident artists.
Woo! Hope I feel a LOT better by 5pm tomorrow!
So these next three days will by the aria-opera marathon.

Audition, Dress rehearsal, crack o' dawn flight, audition, crack o' dawn flight, audition, opening night.


proving it

Had a great coaching yesterday on Act I. Finally felt like I "proved" myself to this coach who previously had constructive and not-so-constructive criticism. But I think it's now going to be great. I was really into it though, too. I mean, acting in my coaching, but not acting just to act- acting because the music and text actually made me feel it. It felt really really good. And now of course since I wasn't 100% better, I'm not feeling really really good.

I suppose I'll have to revert to the theraflu and oj, but I still have this lingering cough and congestion all over that just makes it harder to phonate sometimes.

TWO days to get well!

In other ivy-league-school-news, I sent an email saying that I cannot be released for the live audition, and they came back with two other dates before then for me to sing on. Well- they ARE both impossible..but ONE of them isn't- ONLY if I get into the finals of a competition that I'm being released for the week before. Ok, I know that made no sense,but in my head it did.

Here is the deal. I think that they are trying to get me out there no matter what because of teacher-that-wants-to-work-with-me, but my problem is...I don't feel like I can be the one to say "this isn't going to work out this year with my current schedule and with next year's schedule". But who is to say that "next year's schedule" will have ANYTHING on it besides ONE show through Sept.30th? And THAT show would be the reason that I can't go to this school (obviously) because the semester begins earlier.

But WOULD I want to go to this school? Ahhh.. It's a really not good situation.
I don't know if they would say "we can't let you in without a live audition" to me, or if I should say "this isn't going to work for me this year" and just drop it at that or say that I am trying to make other plans to go to Europe or something.

Still it would be SO nice to have a safety- something that I could count on for next year---even if it is school.

There is so much involved.

In other not fun non-release-from-work news, the big audition for big-german-opera-company-and-scholarship that I'm trying to be released for in March may not happen. It's the day of the "meet the artists" in the cast for my upcoming show, but ALSO they day for MY CAST to run it musically. The thing is, my cast is all resident artists-- I mean, could we not do this on any other day? Well, that's what our stage manager/scheduler suggested in an email to the higher powers, but if those higher powers say no, I'm in a crappy crappy situation.
The application is due this week and it costs forty bucks to send!!!

I hope someone emails me back about the final word soon.

05 February, 2007

still sniffling

I've had just about enough of this. But the cold nasty part is over. Now are the lovely remnants of what is traveling down my throat.

I'm attempting to get ready for my auditions this Friday.

On the table for my six:
Durch, Zerb, Queen, Doll, Lakme and Norina.

No English. That's ok- they all know I speak English, and THEY'RE not American anyway.

I'm adding queen this time because it's supposedly the most requested aria in Germany IF you have it on your list.
Ok then. I do.

I'm going to start with Durch because I love it, and then we'll see.

What would I sub in and out if I'm just not feeling it? Glitter I suppose.

In other need-to-send-application-out news,
Getting another German-place audition ready. I hope I can be released for the audition.

Oh yes, and I just emailed school-from-last-year regarding the impossibility of my making their audition dates due to our scenes performances here.
I know it will make them mad and it's just not cool, but there is no way I can spend 500 MORE dollars doing another same-day turnaround flight to sing on a Sunday (if they'll even hear me then...or on a day off or something). I asked to be considered by my audition last year and my tape last year.
If teacher-who-liked-me-and-wanted-me-at-the-program gets upset it really just isn't my fault.
I mean, what happened last year was their mistake, and I'm just caught in the middle of having this 'great offer' (for school, though)....and not even being able to be considered for it because I'm having this 'great career'...hahahahah.

I also emailed homeland-opera regarding auditioning for them in May- and I have chosen a date at random (well, and considering any other competitions that are in town then), to say that I'll travel to homeland and audition there!
Hope they haven't cast their seasons by then, but then again, it's a different world out there.

Oh what fun it is to play the will-I-have-a-gig-in-2008 game.

02 February, 2007


I broke down and finally bought cold meds today after feeling worse this morning.
Usually this doesn't happen. I just drink tons of water and juice and eat soup and all is well.
But it's now day 6 and this cough has traveled far enough into my chest to do something about it.

so: 6pm- robitussin dm, go to rehearsal. Have a Cold-Eze sucker and then some Halls pectin suckers the whole time.
9:30pm- one of the cast members gave me a super duper cold fighter that's #1 in canada called ColdFx. It's ginseng (not the asian kind) and I'm supposed to take it like a Zpack- 3 a day 3 times a day, 2 a day and then 1 a day for 3 days.
We'll see if it works.

And now I'm working on some theraflu before bed (which will be a Vicks Vaporrub party all over my PJs).

WebMD says that for all of my symptoms (which included a fever tonight- yuck!), theraflu is supposed to hit all of them...but it has so much acetamenophin in it! 650mg! Isn't one tablet 50? That's all I usually take.

Weird. Well I'm drinking it anyway.
Tomorrow we move into the theater.
So I'll be cold(er) and far(ther) away from tea, water, and my BED for the next week until opening.