What a long, strange month it’s been. So many different things have happened, and most of them have been pretty amazing.
I started March with a case of what my new, fancy, otolaryngologist called acute tracheal bronchitis, which essentially translated to total exhaustion and the inability to take a deep breath without coughing up a lung. Perfect for singing! It wasn’t much fun, but I did learn to voluntarily go to a doctor and ask for what I need, and I managed to get it together just in time to sing the dress rehearsal of Serse. I can’t even begin to express how much the support of my amazing teacher and the rest of the Conservatory community means to me; I’m not sure how I could have pulled that off without it.
Serse happened! I’m usually the first to express dissatisfaction with my own performance, but I was actually very happy with how it went! I reached almost every goal I’d set for myself, and apparently it was effective. There’s a whole separate blog post about this, but I’m truly honored to have had this incredible opportunity, and am so grateful to my friends, colleagues, and family, who came to support me and see what turned out to be a really good show. In case you missed it or want to see it again, here’s a video of Ombra mai fu:
I spent the next week in a post-illness, post-show daze, catching up on homework and rest. Then a pair lovely friends came up from SoCal for a visit, and we had a few adventures, not to mention some news worth celebrating… I then spent Sunday in Palo Alto, where I managed to make the finals of the Holt Scholarship Competition!
The next day was my 23rd birthday, which isn’t particularly exciting, but was spent in good company, with a lesson, work, yoga, class, dinner with some of my favorites, and a very amusing rehearsal. That week was topped off by a wonderful day with my best friend, and *gasp* no work! Because sometimes treating oneself isn’t an altogether bad idea.
The fourth week of the month was meant to be spring break, but I’ve had the amazing opportunity to cover the Mezzo role(s) (Foreign Singer/Lady with a Hat Box) in the Conservatory Opera Program’s production of Dominick Argento’s Postcard from Morocco. This is an fascinating work with so many layers, and an incredible range of emotions, from disturbing to hilarious. It’s a pleasure to study this music, and to watch my colleagues work with the incredible director. I spent the first half of every day in rehearsal, and the second working at the office upstairs. On the 28th, I was also lucky to be the alternate for the Marilyn Horne masterclass event. Unfortunately, I didn’t to sing, but getting to meet this incredible performer and educator isn’t a bad consolation prize. This week was definitely a lesson in patience, and how to make the most of every experience.
On the last day of “break,” I sang in a master class for the incredible Luana DeVol. My colleagues and I received very helpful advice, and got to learn quite a bit about her amazing experiences. The more master classes I’m exposed to, the better I’m learning to learn within the unique framework of this format, and I think I’m able to take away much more from each experience.
All in all, this was definitely one of the more eventful months of my life! Plans for April include the rest of the Postcard process, polishing my repertoire for my first-ever spring jury, and continuing to work on my roles for the summer: I’m covering Elena in Anya17 for Opera Parallèle in June, and singing Olga in Eugene Onegin for the Russian Opera Workshop at the Academy of Vocal Arts in Philadelphia in July. Also classes… and life, which, I’m beginning to understand, happens in conjunction with other plans.