Friday, May 10, 2013
Miraculously it is May already and the school year is drawing to a close. My final big event for the semester was a lecture for the University Forum sponsored by UNLV's College of Liberal Arts. My presentation was entitled Find Your Om: A Yoga/Meditation Approach to Stress and Success. A diverse audience asked many insightful questions after I shared scientific studies proving the positive physiological and psychological effects of meditation, as well as affirmations from successful yogis ranging from Deepak Chopra to Lebron James. Next, I look forward to my third summer trip to Tuscaloosa to direct opera scenes and teach yoga for singers at the Druid City Opera Workshop. Besides spending time with the inspiring and entertaining Dr. Paul Houghtaling, I get to spend the end of May teaching Mozart, Massenet, and Namaste.
Sunday, April 28, 2013
April has been a busy month musically. I returned to Indiana to hear my former student Ali Wregglesworth sing some of my songs (When With You Asleep & Penitent) at her senior recital at the University of Evansville. I also got the chance to present a recital with my former student, singer/pianist/composer Josh Kight. He wrote a song for me ("Les roses de Saadi") that I had the pleasure of premiering, despite its taxing tessitura! Back in Vegas at UNLV Opera Workshop's "I Feel Pretty," coloratura soprano Isabella Ivy premiered a piece I wrote based on the opening of the play Steel Magonlias: "There is no such thing as a natural beauty." The next day UNLV hosted the first Cal-Western Regional NATS Auditions, and the next morning/today I was called to step in for an ailing soprano at the Southern Nevada Musical Arts Society concert. Luckily I had sung both the Lord Nelson Mass and the Mozart Alleluja before, but it had been a while and there was no time to rehearse with the orchestra. It goes to show, always be ready, and seize the opportunity to sing!
Sunday, March 24, 2013
It's spring break! Time to cleanse, update, reboot. Yoga for Singers is now on Instagram as well as Pinterest. I'm looking forward to a trip to Sedona this week, which should include yoga, hiking, and vortexes, oh my. Then it's time to prepare for NATS, a solo recital in Evansvile, and the final opera workshop of the school year. More information soon, until then "I shall see you in my garden, and spring will come and stay."
Saturday, March 02, 2013
Another beautiful poster by talented costumer/graphic artist/soprano Daniella Toscano heralds UNLV Opera's upcoming production of The Elixir of Love. I warned my students that someone always falls in love during an Elixir and indeed it has happened yet again. Come to see the show and guess who! Donizetti's opera will always have a dear place in my heart. My first voice teacher gave me her Elixir own score when I was only 16, saying that she hoped to hear me sing Adina one day. I did go on to sing Adina, and now I am directing Adinas.
Wednesday, February 20, 2013
The life of a performer/teacher is a juggling act, but it's nice to keep all of the balls in motion. Tonight I was invited to sing the Lament of Juliet, Jorge Grossmann's "The Lark's Voice Doth Us Affray," with the UNLV Symphony Orchestra. The concert took place during my rehearsal for UNLV Opera's upcoming production of The Elixir of Love. Luckily my Assistant Director/Graduate Assistant is an incredibly experienced professional singer in her own right, so a recitative rehearsal continued while I was performing in a nearby building. Then it was lovely to return to rehearsal and stage Nemorino's and Adina's climactic arias. Elixir has always had a soft spot in my heart, and I hope my Vegas-themed concept brings new insights to Donzietti's well-loved work.
Friday, January 11, 2013
The National Opera Association convention in Portland was enlivening, thanks to lots of caffeine and lots of operatic insights. My favorite discoveries included the world premiere of a clever chamber opera entitled "How to Date a Coloratura" and the top-rated coffeehouse Barista. Best of all, the conference gave me a great idea for a new chamber opera of my own. More on that in the months/years to come. In his session, composer Kirke Mechem ("Tartuffe") said it takes 3 years to write an opera, so I better get going. It could also take 3 years to work one's way through all 68,000 square feet of Portland's Powell's Books.
Saturday, December 22, 2012
Well, we survived the Mayan apocalypse! Now it's safe to look forward to 2013. For me, it will bring my first trips to Portland, Australia, and who knows where else while sharing my musings on opera and yoga. Check out my latest Yoga for Singers YouTubevideo to help you destress over the holidays, or before an audition or performance. Forget traditional "resolutions." Find your flow in the new year, set your intentions, and follow through to achieve your goals. I am feeling peaceful after a Winter Solstice Chanting Hour last night: 60 minutes of Om by candlelight. Happy holidays to all!