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Remember that.

1 Jul

By the time this post publishes, I will probably be running around a yet-known Philadelphia train station with two large suitcases in tow, attempting to figure out how to get onto the right train to take me to New Jersey. Regular SEPTA patrons, I ask that you treat me with compassion and kindness, as I am inevitably bound to look like a COMPLETE AND TOTAL IDIOT. Just smile and nod and pretend like you agree that navigating the transportation system is hard. I’m a Girl Scout, y’all, and I can tell you how to get back from the middle of nowhere with nothing but your fingers and a stick, but… put me in front of a train schedule and my eyes go sort of go wonky and I feel like I’m taking crazy pills. Let me give you a little glimpse into what I’ll look like:

…I’ll figure it out. Anyway.

New Jersey. My first summer program.

I’m pretty much totally alone, horribly excited, and a little bit terrified, but, ready or not, I begin tomorrow and here I come. I could write in depth about the myriad feelings I’ve got, being away from my voice teacher, my mom, my friends, my cat, my school, my safe comfortable musical womb, etc. I’ll spare you that and let you know that I’ve got to remember:

“The youngest you can ever be is when you can sing and enjoy it.” – Leontyne Price

“I want to sing like birds sing: not wondering who is listening and what they think.” – Rumi

“He who sings scares away his woes.” – Miguel Cervantes

“Singing is a form of admitting I am alive.” – Alfredo Kraus

“Why are you stingy with yourselves? Why are holding back? What are you saving for–for another time? There are no other times. There is only now. Right now.” – George Balanchine

“Do not fear mistakes. There are none.” – Miles Davis

And, perhaps most of all:

Time for an adventure. Here we go. Wish me luck.

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Winner, winner…

15 Jun

One of the really cool things about the Internet is that I get to interact with people like me. And now you’re thinking:

duh

Seriously, though, it’s pretty sweet. Since I don’t live in one of the major opera metropolises (that day’s a-comin’ soon), I have to stay updated on all the Great Operatic Goings-On somehow. And given the recent Opera News/Metropolitan Opera debacle, it’s safe to say that I feel¬†mostcomfortable getting my information from THE PEOPLE. You know, the people whose butts are actually in the seats.

the people, who occasionally look like this

The “people” in this case being other musicians, music-lovers, and bloggers like myself. All jokes aside, I don’t merely read other music blogs to get an unfiltered idea of what’s going on in The Business, I read them to learn about other singers’ journeys in this admittedly wacky, beautiful, and sometimes horribly unfair world. So, yeah, I get something out of it. The path to success in the music world is as individual as a fingerprint, and I’m grateful to be able to shake hands–if only virtually–with others.

BUT SOMETIMES, I WIN THINGS, AND IT’S EVEN BETTER.

My name was chosen at A Liberal’s Libretto for a nifty little Naxos America prize package, pictured here:

I don’t particularly have the money to buy opera DVDs.. or opera CDs, let’s be real, so FREE STUFF! FREE OPERA! FREE ART SONG! is welcome. Thanks to James (and Naxos America) for hooking me up with Simon Boccanegra (featuring Placido Domingo and Anja Harteros), a Szymanowski opera I’m excited to dig into (King Roger), and baritone Dmitri Hvorostovsky’s Rachmaninoff album.

So.. today, I’m a winner. Pardon me while I clutch my trophies.

Vittoria!

7 Jun

For little baby sopranos like yours truly, singing in TOSCA is a pretty far away dream. However, thanks to the magic of university (and a very ambitious vocal coaching graduate student, Corie Melaugh), I was lucky enough to get a taste of what performing this masterpiece will be like when I’m ready. I had the immense pleasure of singing as the soprano chorister for Ms. Melaugh’s vocal coaching project–Act II of TOSCA.

This is a staged reading–thus why you see scores! We put this together in an incredibly short amount of time, mind you. I don’t think we had the full cast and orchestra together until the day of the dress rehearsal.

In case you were in the mood for a little opera today, check out what our Scarpia (baritone Kasey Yeargain) uploaded to YouTube:

It’s great to be able to learn from the work of your peers. I hope you’ll take some time to enjoy the work of Kasey Yeagain (baritone, Scarpia), Phena Hackett (soprano, Floria Tosca), Matthew Brooks (tenor, Mario Cavaradossi), Joshua Hughes (baritone, Sciarrone), Christopher Layton (tenor, Spoletta), and the lovely cantata chorus of which I was a part (myself, Bridget Skaggs, Kathryne Overturf, Tevyn Hill, and Erick Rivera). Thanks to Corie for the opportunity.. and the sweet TOSCA score!

You don’t get to see me (I’m in the balcony, y’all!), but tune in for some high B action and just a glimpse of one of Puccini’s masterpieces.

Enjoy!