Saturday, January 31, 2009

What I did on my snow day.

We were smart enough to create photographic proff of our snow day. So here you go.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009


Monday marked the first "official" rehearsal for Giulio Cesare with the entire cast and Maestro. As of today, we have a month until opening night.
The rehearsal itself, in my opinion, went quite well. We had an hour break in the middle, and instead of being a good student and practicing (I hadn't had a chance all day, seeing as I was busy from 9 a.m. until right then), I went to dinner with some of the other cast members. This was fun, because I made $5 in rehearsal that day after answering a question Maestro posed. Does this mean I'm a paid opera singer? ;)

The dinner crowd consisted of myself and my double, 4 countertenors, and a baritone. That's right, 4 countertenors. Before this show I didn't even know 4 countertenors. But we had a good time, and I enjoyed getting to know them a little better. Somehow we ended up talking about our dating lives and such, and after they talked about theirs, one of them asked me if I was seeing anyone. I said I wasn't (which is true), but that I'm working on it (which is also true). He looked me in the eye and said, "Oh don't worry, there are many fish in the pond, and the pond is a big place." I can honestly say I've never been asked about my love life before, especially in a group of people I don't know that well. But it made me laugh and I had a good time.

And to make this week even more interesting, the university closed today due to snow. There was already a few inches on the ground, but by noon we had a foot of snow. So, after watching a Disney movie with the housemates, we went out and played in the snow. I haven't played in the snow for years, so this was quite interesting. And, as many many many college students have done, we went tray sledding. That's all I'm saying about that. But now my body's a little worn out. We rounded out the snow day by watching The Fellowship of the Ring, the extended version. But I got work done afterwords in preparation for tomorrow's opera rehearsal. But the snow day was very much needed, and I had a blast!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Happy Birthday Mozart!

If Mozart were still alive, he'd be 253 today.

One of my first encounters with opera was with this duet, and I've been in love with it ever since.

This was one of the first arias I ever learned. It still is one of my favorites.

In my opinion, this is the most seductive piece of music ever composed.

Enjoy! =)

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Signor del mondo...

I had my first coaching with Maestro Wedow today, and was very happy with how it all went. Again, my role isn't very big, but it is important. Nireno is, as Mo. Wedow put it, "Like James Levine, Vince Liotta, and David Effron all rolled into one." Cleopatra trusts him, and really lets him boss her around a bit. I keep forgetting that Cesare is, well, Julius Caesar (ahhh!!!), a larger-than-life character. King of the world. He's more than a general, and Cleopatra knows it. If she wins his love, she wins power. What she doesn't plan on, however, is falling in love with him.
And this is where Nireno helps.
He's proud of Cleopatra. She's "his honor student" as Mo. Wedow said. But he's still a servant. A servant, as he put it, in the way that Hilary Clinton is working with President Obama. And he's on the right team; after all, it is Nireno that begins the coronation scene, declaring Curio to be the victor, and Cesare to be kind of the world. In the back of his mind, though, he's saying, "See, I told you my girl Cleopatra would win. And now all those suckers who supported Tolomeo are being beheaded. Guess I was right!"
But there was still time left after we were finished working through the role, so we worked a little on my aria from Ariadne auf Naxos. I haven't been working on it that long, so it's still pretty rough in a lot of places. But Maestro gave me some very good suggestions, especially on how I learn the aria. He said I should take it in chunks, and that while Struass sounds like it's floating, you have to watch the conductor at all times. In retrospect, I should have sung Mozart for him, but he mentioned that he'd like to hear me sing my aria from Le Clemenza di Tito eventually. But I don't think I made a fool of myself in the least, and learned a great deal.
I'm just so thrilled to be singing in this opera, and to be working with my amazing cast members and artistic team! =)

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

New Semester

It's only 3 days into the semester, but I'm already very busy. My semester started at 9:00 am on Monday morning with a coaching for Giulio Cesare. It went well, but I still need to do a lot of work as far as bringing Nireno to life, something Daniela is helping me accomplish. I worked with Marcello on Tuesday, and he was very pleased with my diction, telling me how much I had improved over the break. This made me very happy, seeing my work amount to something!

Of course, whenever I come back to school from a long break, some homesickness lingers for the first week or so. It makes me frustrated, seeing as I really haven't found a way to rid myself of it. One of the things I miss most when I'm at school is having my cats around. Yes, I'm one of those cat people. ;) There's a Petsmart not far from campus that has cats up for adoption, and on Monday, I discovered that you can hold them for as long as you want. Which I did. And I'm going back today. It's really too bad I can't adopt one, although the cats at home would freak out if I did.

The other big news is that I'll be moving again next fall. While I like the location of the house I'm at now, there's just too many people and too much noise. Part of this comes from being on a very busy street corner and me not being used to traffic noise, having grown up in the middle of nowhere. But some of it also stems from there just being 11 of us, and the majority of the housemates being very extroverted, which sometimes clashes with my introverted personality. So, I'll be living with 3 or 4 friends in a townhouse a little farther from campus. But it's about half the price I'm paying now, in a much quieter environment, and closer to things like the grocery store. But it's still close enough to campus that I won't need a car. I'm excited for this change and think it will be the best for me.

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Baritone therapy

I'm getting a little stressed about next semester, with my rediculously busy schedule, Giulio Cesare, and upper divisionals. But you know what the best kind of therapy is? Good-looking baitones. Just watch.

I know it's in Russian, but it's good to know that headphones are an international pain in the butt.

Some Mozart to cure the winter blah

Thursday, January 01, 2009


Hello 2009!

Winter break has been wonderful so far, except for the having a cold when I came home and the power outages. Those were not so great. But the ice melted, the power came back on, and my voice has mostly come back. It better, because I have an audition recording to make tomorrow and 5 pieces to sing. At some point I'll post photos of the insane amount of ice we had, but right now there's a cat on my lap and I can't get my camera.
I've also spent much of my break reading, which is something I really don't have much time for when I'm at school. Mansfeild Park by Jane Austen is what I'm currently reading. Yes, I'm a Jane Austen fan and am not ashamed to admit it. But I also got my hands on copies of Dostoevsky's The Devils (which is also translated as Demons) and The Count of Monte Cristo by Dumas. I was going to find some smutty romance novel to read over break just for the heck of it, but I don't think that's going to happen.
2008 was definitely a freak-out year for me; opera workshop, meeting Dmitri Hvorostovsky, my "special" summer job and class, dealing with insecurities, the cattle call freak out, singing for Virginia Zeani, the callback for Giulio Cesare, getting cast in the same opera, and learning a lot of "big girl" music.

May the freak-outs continue.