30 April, 2010


only got 3 miles in on the elliptical. 30 minutes.
but as we get more busy in rehearsals, and I have to have more time to absorb everything we are doing and really make an arc for the character, I MAY have less time.
But I still think 30 minutes is better than nothing.
Today I'm not called until 3.
It's 10 now. Will I get up and do everything I need to which includes:
Buying more food, finding a post office, working out, and reviewing my music for this afternoon?
Or will I stay in bed and read the NYtimes for the next hour?


28 April, 2010


Yes, I woke up at 7:30am today to get some elliptical and treadmill in (4.5 miles total), since rehearsal began at 10 and we have an event tonight.
But- I also ate three chocolate chip cookies that are being supplied daily by our hotel in the lobby.
Am I ruining the whole point of this working out thing? Or will this just mean I won't GAIN anything additional due to the cookie intake?


27 April, 2010

keepin' on, and staging

Today- 30 minutes elliptical 30 minutes treadmill for another total of 5 miles. And I was less of a hater than usual.

Staging- going really well. I like doing things in order, and thank goodness that is what we are doing.
I feel like I'm already creating a really good arc for the character to develop inside of, and am being given the freedom to choose and create and explore and experiment. Most of the things that I'm naturally inclined to do, usually work, and then I can start adding detail and finesse.

After two days of not really being called until either the afternoon or the evening...I'm now starting the real 'work' 10am to 10pms.

And so- as this process unfolds, I'm still excited, 'good' nervous, and really hoping to shape something that will be a once-in-a-lifetime kind of opportunity and sing for me.

26 April, 2010

day three and sing-through

I did it AGAIN!
Yes, this is boring. I know I will need to change it up soon. But hey- an HOUR on the elliptical ain't half bad, right?
5 miles.

And again my girly pushups and 30 situps.
My question is...or, at least...my sense is- that eventually my body will get used to this, and there will be no more 'results'. Not that I'm seeing or feeling any right now.
But I do think my heart rate is increased most of the time, and I do generally feel good about being able to stay on that dang elliptical for one hour without cursing its existence.

I don't feel tired or overworked or anything afterwards. I KNOW I'm not pushing myself TOO hard. Then I'd just be useless for rehearsals.

And I'm not really in the mood to try JOGGING again since that always ends in some type of side stitch that never goes away plus partial asthma and general frustration that I can't run, don't like it, don't want to like it.

Oh yea- and the sing through last night went well!

25 April, 2010

day two...

Well, I unpacked my clothes and put them in drawers, and I went shopping. So now I have some food for my minifridge, toothpaste...what else?
Well...first rehearsal doesn't begin until 6, so there was nothing to do except for go to the elliptical machine again.
Another 60 minutes. 30 more situps, 10 more girly pushups, and stretching.

It's not the most fun thing...but, they have a tv attached to the machine, so- I could either be sitting in my room, online and watching tv (like now), OR I could be doing the same (minus the online although I DO have my iphone in case I get an email), and moving my butt at the same time.

So I voted for moving my butt.

First sing through is tonight. I hope I don't start falling asleep at 9pm! Jet lag is still kinda kicking me in the behind. I don't fall asleep early, but I can barely keep my eyes open from about 9 to 11.

Now, shower, lunch, and some warming up before tonight.

24 April, 2010

day one

An uneventful plane ride followed by checking into my hotel which will be my home for the next 29 days. I have a minifridge and a microwave. OH the possibilities of cooking here!
What did I do as soon as I walked into the room?
Obvs, check the internets to see if they were working.

On to the second task. Unpacking.
HA! Maybe tomorrow. Or next week. I can live out of a suitcase at the base of my bed for a while. Trust me.

But the THIRD task is the best so far.
ONE HOUR on the elliptical machine- 5 miles. While watching some home improvement show on hgtv.
Followed by stretching, followed by 30 sit ups, followed by TEN GIRLY PUSHUPS.

OMG. I know I can't say that it's going to start a revolution and happen every day. But...wouldn't it be nice if it did?
Oh, yea, and then 15 minutes in the jacuzzi. THAT was nice.

So now I'm in the room, post-shower, needing dinner but of course not in the mood to start pulling up google maps of the city and navigating how to get to either a food store or a restaurant.

It MIGHT be a room service and tv kind of night.
oh yea, it's only 8pm and I'm ready for sleep.
Jet lag.

23 April, 2010

the big apple for 24 hours

I made it!
The plane only shook semi-violently once to make me scared enough to begin the 'ok this is happening ... this is it' scenarios in my brain..and wondering whether the pilot knew how to make a water landing.

Yesterday was spent doing the regular "i'm back in America" dance- going through mail and making sure I didn't miss anything too important (no, I don't need to read the AGMA crappy backup health care insurance plan...I know it's crap and I could never use anything to my benefit, and yes, thank you health insurance for raising my monthly fee yet another 20 dollars a month, just as you did six months ago...you suck). Also, eating GOOD and I mean GOOD sushi. Twice. Also, repacking some of my clothes after seeing and REMEMBERING all the other clothes that I have here.
And now I'm in NYC, having my hair cut today- why here? Well, I guess I just don't feel comfortable telling the Germans how many CENTIMETERS I want cut off yet.

Have a voice lesson later today, a dinner with friends, staying with best friend from college, and all in all, enjoying 24 hours before 'work' begins.

Although OF COURSE, YES, work is fun. That's why I do it. Obvs.
So- more from my next destination and the beginning of rehearsals and all that jazz.

I found out where I'm staying there is a pool and a workout room (as most long-distance hotels have), and I have vowed that there will be NO excuse for me not to go down the one or two floors to those facilities..EVERY DAY.
Maybe a 30 day type of project will begin. MAYBE.
I don't make promises online that I can't keep.

21 April, 2010

up up and away...

i hope today.

19 April, 2010

ashes, ashes, we all fall down...

Well, tomorrow at 8:30am I was SUPPOSED to leave for the US.
And of course because of the volcano and the ash and the insanity that has been the last 4 days at every major European airport, I am not leaving.
Right now I am scheduled for a Wednesday afternoon flight to NYC. AND a Friday morning flight.

It's a little annoying and also a little scary.
Annoying that I had booked the next 3 days in NYC with every appointment, lesson, coaching and 'to-do' that I had TO DO...and scary, because...
I mean, do I want to be among the first airplanes that try to fly over, under or through this micro-fiber glass that supposedly does damage to jet engines?

I don't want to be 30,000 feet in the air somewhere between London and Iceland and even THINK about that...although...knowing me, I know I will, and every little shake rattle and roll of the plane will freak me out.

Maybe I will take some tylenol PM with me even though it will be 1pm in the afternoon when I take off.

For now, I am packing. I don't have HALF of the things that I want to pack with me (those would be in storage, upstate, where I planned to arrive, unpack, repack, and go to the dentist and meet with the caterer and the musicians for the wedding...aaaand all that is canceled now)--but somehow I'm managing to fill my 'normal'- one carry on and one suitcase. This time though, I'm not taking the gigantor suitcase..just the normal sized checked-bag.

No presents, wine, fresh-pressed olive oil--nothing is coming with me...because I know that on my way back, yes, in six weeks, I will have QUITE a lot more to take with me. And maybe even PAY to check a second suitcase. I just need all of my 'things'- mostly clothes and shoes- in one place.

I am sitting here surrounded by mostly winter clothes, the weather outside is so gorgeous I can't imagine putting on a sweater again in a week, trying to figure out what I need for 6 weeks of rehearsals, possible donor-dinners, performances, casual and workout clothes.

Mostly I'm thinking- am I ready, and am I really going to GET there?
And if I CAN'T get there by the first day of rehearsal--- what happens? How long is the 'wait' period before it's too late and too long?
And really- how long can transatlantic flights be suspended?

16 April, 2010

even more muchiness

I had another audition on Thursday which was an 'information' audition. They see Koenigin on my list and say, sure, we always have time to hear a Koenigin. HA! Too bad I started with Zerb!!
Actually, the accompanist was lovely this time, the theater was big and awesome, I think I sang really well, and ... who knows. I just like making good impressions.

For some reason, I almost think MORE about the 'information' auditions when I'm not necessarily singing for something specific...than some other auditions when I am singing for a specific role in a specific time period.

It's like- do they like me in general and will some magical opera magically fit into my schedule and will they magically remember that I rule?

Much more charm in the unknown I suppose.
Of course, still also waiting to hear about my two most recent international auditions in Southern France and on Tuesday.

For now, last weekend in FF.
Mixed feelings of excitement and ... of course... sadness to leave 'home'. But mostly excitement and 'oh crap I have to pack again'.

14 April, 2010

that was certainly....muchier

Vocally, my audition went great yesterday.
Although seemingly everything else was plotting to take me down.
First off, the pianist who had been informed of my repertoire previous to the audition, told me he wanted to use his own music for Zerbinetta.
Ok, fine, I get it. You make your own markings and page turns in a hard piece.
So. We start. It's SLOW. I"m thinking, ok, he just thinks the 'recit' part is slower. I"ll speed him up on the "eine kurtze nacht, ein hastiger tag"...but, no.
I speed up, he keeps plodding along.
2nd part- Noch glaub ich. SLOW.
I mean, I can DO it, I'm sounding DANG good, but still with the slow and the inflexible tempo! ok...
the ' so war' will be fast cuz I control it from the beginning.
So I start singing...and all of a sudden- NO PIANO?

oh yea, he had been 'told' I'd only be singing the beginning. Um, WHAT?
but he'll be happy to play the rest from my folder.

ok, so after that little random PAUSA we keep going. It's still damn slow and I try to speed him up again. But..it's just a timid piano player who is clearly not comfortable in this music.
Sucks, because I"m singing really really well, and I'm singing for a CONDUCTOR who obviously knows that this should be faster.

ANd I'm thinking--does HE know that I know that it should be faster? Does he know I'm TRYING to make it faster and this guy isn't budging at all?
If I were a more 'famous diva' would I completely STOP and re-set the tempo?
Is it somehow MY fault that it's two clicks too slow, even though I can still sing it well, it's just not 'in character' for the piece to be that slow?

OK, second piece.
He starts out SO SLOW again, that the conductor who is moving his arms from his seat, stops us, and wants to conduct the piece.
That's JUST FINE with me now that the pianist is going faster. And I sing it really really well again...
But again, I'm thinking- will I somehow be faulted for this? For not stopping and setting my tempo? For not "knowing" that it should BE faster, even though OBVIOUSLY it should be faster and I just can't GET him to MOVE faster!??!

All in all, frustrating, because the SINGING was so good and the pianist didn't 'screw up', but he also made it impossible to do anything about the tempo that HE set...making ME look like the screw up for not knowing musical 'style' or being able to take control of the situation.

I mean, in a 'normal' ie, sing for the AD audition situation, they would KNOW that the pianist was just...not cooperative...and would graciously accept what happened. Because, people know pianists in ny, mostly. And, if you get stuck with one that's not super super great, or had SAID that they knew your contemporary rep and then screwed it up, most AD's get that.
But here is a conductor who expects a performance from me. Yes, it was an audition, but also a performance.
And with no possibility of collaboration or even talking to the pianist before-hand...this is what he got. And that is frustrating to me and to him, I'm sure.

The more I think about how well I sang, the more I'm annoyed that the whole situation happened in the first place. Because I know I'll be judged by it. And not by the vocal and dramatic production that I offered alone.

11 April, 2010

you were once muchier

I haven't sung an audition in quite a while, I think. Now they seem so- second nature to me...but I have 2 that are pretty important coming up this week, and so what I would like to regain is that 'muchiness' that I had in the audition seasons of 2007/8 when I was in New York City and auditions were the ONLY thing I was doing besides working 2 part time jobs and love love loving nyc.

I mean, it was nothing. Waking up. Getting ready. Getting warmed up. Getting dressed. Already being warmed up from the 2 auditions and coaching that I had the day before most likely, really just being IN music and IN auditions all the time.
It was smooth and 'normal'.
And now since I have been 'living', and preparing a role, I've had fewer auditions..and especially have not been in the crazy new york young artist audition scene.

But I want that muchiness back. That feeling that yet again, I will rock aria number one, and whatever they choose for aria number 2, I will have sung it a zillion times, love it, and could have just as easily picked it as my starter.

This week I get to begin with Zerb. (I think). The WHOLE thing. Awesome.
And that already puts me in a good mood.
And whether it's followed by Koenigin or Olympia-- I will BRING it.

09 April, 2010

another good one

I warmed up for about 20 minutes yesterday, sang through some audition rep that I HAVEN"T been asked for in a while! (Rosina, Fee) just cuz...and then proceeded to sing all of Lucia.

And felt SO good at the end.
Yes, my speaking voice couldn't go quite as low. But it didn't affect my singing voice. I didn't feel tired, and in fact, I could have kept on singing.

I'm confident that the 'double header' I have ahead of me- Saturday night/Sunday matinee - will be great.
And that is a good feeling.

Not much to report these days except that I'm still trying to do the biking/bikram combination to feel healthy and ready physically for the dramatic and vocal tasks ahead.

I'm sure I'll have a lot more to say once I'm actually in rehearsals at the end of the month, but for now, enjoying my last 2 weeks here, have 2 upcoming auditions that I am preparing for, have a fun weekend planned, and will eventually start thinking about packing up my life again for 5 and a half weeks.

06 April, 2010

practice makes...

Good day today.
Warmed up well this afternoon and then went through Zerbinetta--which felt lovely.
Haven't had as much time as I'd like this week to practice, but really. After tomorrow. It begins.

For realz.

But anyway, I feel prepared and excited and it's all good.
Can you tell I've had a good day?

05 April, 2010


Yesterday I had a skype chat with upcoming-director about upcoming-opera and I really really really am excited by the possibilities of shaping this character in the opera.
Lie, REALLY excited.
The mad scene is going to to be COOL and unexpected and gory and everything that it should be.
And the sets look cool.
I'm not really pro a 'running around stage acting crazy waiving a knife' Lucia, and when I found out that he isn't either--I rejoiced..greatly.

It's going to be really psychological. Every aspect of what moves and motivates me will almost be a flashback, or my own reality...and I really like that.

04 April, 2010

i need swine flu again

I'm up 2 kilos since 'swine-flu' weight.

Damn this land of chocolates, pastries, and cakes galore.

Today I took a 15k bike ride through the 'back woods' here--but my exercise calorie burner counter thingie says that because it was a 'leisurely' pace, I burned less than 200 calories on that ride.

D'oh squared!

Now I'm going to bikram later today.
Maybe will try to go all week.

But it's so easy to see what is happening.
I'm not STRESSED - consciously, but apparently I am, subconsciously.

That means- I eat whatever is around, especially chocolate. And why?
Well I suppose there could be a number of reasons.
First off, leaving here in 16 days.
BUT that is actually also really EXCITING because it means I'll soon be in rehearsals for Lucia.
But that actually means that I'm probably stressed because I haven't REALLLLLY memorized the uncut version of L/Raimondo duet (yes, I know, it's like FOUR recitative interjections and a page of music...I KNOW).
So there is happy for upcoming work mixed with a little sad for leaving mixed with still annoyed that upcomingopera2 is canceled mixed with what the HECK do I do for three months when I get back here mixed with what the HECK am I doing from now UNTIL I leave in 16 days and why does it NOT involve more practicing, exercising, and NOT eating like shit.

There ya go!
It's all out in the open.

But basically I need a really good case of food poisoning or swine flu, or, OK OK I suppose I could move my butt a bit.

Off to 'pack' for yoga.
It's 50 minutes away and requires 2 outfits, 2 towels, a huge bottle of water, a bag to put my extremely WET clothing in after I sweat for 90 minutes, and of course, yoga mat.

01 April, 2010


YES! I LOVE side projects.
And a friend of mine has started a super cool one!
That I will be contributing to.
No more information can be divulged at this time.

ALSO- I really need to practice. Daily. Not just when I am moved to 'go through it all'.
As in, I told myself that I would have all of March and April to do it, and now- I just have April.
I have to sing, like, NOW ish...and yet, for some reason, I have been on my COMPUTER for the past three hours.

That has to stop.
Time for breakfast (at 1pm).
And then practicing. For real.