Thursday, February 22, 2007
Of course, half of the fun of this audition was getting to spend time in Chicago, which was time well spent. Ahhh, Chicago....
After another night in Lansing, my parents and I made our way back to Interlochen. I had my audition for DePauw University on campus on Monday. DePauw is one of my top choices, so I really wanted this audition to go well. I was feeling secure from the Roosevelt audition, especially with the Elgar piece I'm singing; "The Swimmer" from his song cycle for contralto Sea Pictures. It's a long piece that is very demanding vocally, with it's low Gs and As, and the final high A at the end. However, my DePauw audition did not go as well as I had hoped, although it was far from crash-and-burn. There had been a lot of time between when I warmed up and when I sang (they were slightly behind schedule), and I was still tired from spending a lot of time in the car and traveling. I breathed in some wrong places, and my brain had a huge leak during my Italian piece, but I fixed it in time. I had a lesson with the voice professor that came up for the auditions, and that went very very very well. I had worked with her two summers ago in a Master Class at DePauw's Vocal Arts Camp, and she remembered who I was, which was good. As I said before, the lesson went very well, and I felt that it overrode what hadn't gone well in the actual audition. I won't even go into my sight-reading...
Also this week was The Pirates of Penzanze presented by the Carl Rosa Opera Company, which is based in the UK. Even though I'm not the biggest Gilbert and Sullivan fan, I do enjoy Pirates, and I loved it! The baritone who sang the Pirate King sang, and looked, like bass Rene Pape. He stole the show. Two of the singers, Barry Clark as Major General Stanley and Rosemary Ashe as Ruth, were in the original cast of The Phantom of the Opera, singing the roles of Piangi and Carlotta. I remember listening to my recording of the musical as a child over and over and over until one of the tapes broke, and I never thought that I would ever see any of those singers perform. So, in that respect, it was even more incredible. Both singers are past their prime, but Ashe's high notes are still unmistakable. The rest of the singers were also very good, with a Juan Diego Florez-ish tenor as Frederick, a very loud (and sometimes a bit flat) soprano as Mabel, and a very good supporting cast. I was lucky enough to have a seat in the second row, enabling me to capture the wonderful facial expressions and such of the singers.
More auditions coming up in the following weeks. I'll keep posting!
Sunday, February 18, 2007
Wednesday, February 07, 2007
I sang on the Sunday performance. My parents were supposed to have come for it, but a blizzard in Grand Rapids prevented that from happening. I called them on Saturday, the day they were to have arrived, and they said that the highway had been closed and that they were staying in a hotel for the night, and perhaps they could come tomorrow, if Old Man Winter was permitting. However, the conditions did not improve much, and my parents came home the next day without being able to come to my performance. All of were very upset by this, naturally, and they wanted to be there more than anything, but it just was not possible. However, one of the moms taped the performance, so they'll have a copy soon! Another guy made an audio recording as well, which I'll also have to get my hands on.
This is the Sunday cast of Riders to the Sea with Kevin McLaughlin as Bartley, Sarah Powell as Cathleen, Emily Thebaut as Nora, and me as Maurya, with my old woman make-up.
Here's another pic from Riders to the Sea. I once again am Maurya, with Sarah Powell as Cathleen and Emily Thebaut as Nora. Yes, I know I look a little funny, but I had to get the traditional-opera-throw-my-hand-out-to-the-side-for-emphasis gesture. And who really looks good while singing?
Here are the two Collines; Beak San Kang and Andrew Bogard.
Me on my off night ( although all women were in the Riders chorus) with Sarah Powell and Emma Grettenburger, who sang the role of Cathleen on Saturday.
So, even though the disappointment of my parents not being able to see my first big performance at Interlochen, and even though the air feels like Siberia on a bad day, the performances were a huge success! They were very well received, and those who came seemed to enjoy it.